European car sales analysis Full Year 2017 – brands

European-car-sales-figures-2017The European passenger car market grows by 3% in 2017, to nearly 15,5 million sales, making this the fourth consecutive year of growth in Europe, and the highest volume since 2007, before the financial crisis knocked the market on its knees. However, it is the slowest rate of growth of those four years, and we’ve had 3 months of year-over-year declines, compared to 2 in 2016 and none in 2014 and 2015. Like in the US and China, the shift away from cars and MPVs towards crossover and SUVs is evident and seemingly unstoppable. Sales of type of vehicle have increased for 9 consecutive years and their share of the market has more than doubled in just 6 years time, from 14,3% in 2011 to 29,9% in 2017, with a gain of 16,2% last year. Sales of cars (hatchbacks, sedans, station wagons, coupes and convertibles) and MPVs are down in 2017 after three years of growth, with cars losing 1,3% and down to 60,1% of the market and MPV sales down 5,3% to 10% of the market.

Among the major markets, Italy (+7,9%), Spain (+7,7%) and France (+4,7%) outperformed the market, followed by Germany (+2.7%). UK car sales (‐5,7%) declined for the first time in six years. New EU member states showed a strong performance, growing by 12,8%. Lithuania was the fastest growing market at 27,3%, followed by Hungary at +20,4% and Bulgaria at +18,5%. Besides the UK, the only losers are Ireland (-10,4%), Switzerland (-1%), Denmark (-0,5%) and Finland (-0,4%). You can find historic data of each European member state (including LCV sales) and almost any other country in the world by using the drop-down menu at the top right-hand corner of our site, under Worldwide Car Sales Data.

Midsized_MPV-segment-European-sales-2016-Renault_Scenic-Grand_ScenicLike last year, Renault-Nissan was the big winner among manufacturers, adding almost 100.000 sales, this time followed by Toyota Motor with a plus of more than 80.000 sales, and Volkswagen Group with 66.500 additional sales. The biggest loser is Honda, both in absolute and relative terms, down 11,7% for a loss of 18.500 sales. Honda lost volume 11 out of 12 months, but is still above its record low from 2015. Other losers are Ford Motor Company, also down more than 10.000 sales, and Mazda, down 5.500 sales. Mahindra & Mahindra with its SSangYong brand and Subaru are among the biggest relative losers, while Tesla Motors is the fastest growing manufacturer in Europe with a growth of 81,1%, followed by Aston Martin at +64,7% and General Motors, now a niche player after the sale of Opel, adding a third to its 2016 volume for Cadillac and Chevrolet

Looking at individual brands, Toyota is the big winner this year, consolidating its position as the best selling Asian brand in Europe. Mercedes-Benz and Peugeot also had a very successful year, both adding over 50.000 sales, while Bugatti more than doubles thanks to the replacement of the Veyron by the Chiron. Losers are Opel/Vauxhall, down by almost 50.000 sales (it was up in Q1, before the takeover by PSA), and DS and Volkswagen, both down by almost 20.000 sales. That makes DS the biggest relative loser at almost -30%, let’s hope the DS7 Crossback is able to reverse the brand’s slide.

2017 winners and losers

Manufacturer biggest volume increase Renault-Nissan 97.344 Manufacturer biggest volume lost Honda -18.553
Toyota Motor 80.747 Ford Motor Comp. -11.359
Volkswagen Group 66.585 Mazda -5.570
Manufacturer biggest % increase Tesla Motors 81,1% Manufacturer biggest % lost Honda -11,7%
Aston Martin 64,7% Mahindra & Mahindra -9,7%
General Motors 33,0% Subaru Corp. -5,1%
Brand biggest volume increase Toyota 80.080 Brand biggest volume lost Opel/Vauxhall -49.600
Mercedes-Benz 66.973 DS -19.593
Peugeot 56.559 Volkswagen -19.494
Brand biggest % increase Bugatti 128,6% Brand biggest % lost DS -29,9%
Tesla 81,1% DR Motor -12,8%
Aston Martin 64,7% Honda -11,7%


Fiat-Tipo-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeVolkswagen Group remains the dominant player in Europe, with a share of 23,7% of the market. Thanks to its take-over of Opel/Vauxhall, PSA has now become the second largest manufacturer in Europe with a share of 15,9%, just ahead of Renault-Nissan (now including Mitsubishi) at 14,8% market share. BMW AG and Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles both move up one spot to #4 and #5 respectively, leapfrogging Ford Motor Company which is the only manufacturer in the top-10 to lose volume. Daimler AG passes the 1 million mark in 7th place, distancing Hyundai-Kia which also sets a new volume record. Geely has expanded its portfolio with its purchase of the Lotus brand and remains in 10th place, while Suzuki is the big winner in the top-15, passing Tata Motors and Mazda.

2017 manufacturer ranking

Group 2017 2016 change 2017 share 2016 rank
1 Volkswagen Group 3.677.539 3.610.954 1,8% 23,7% 1
2 PSA-Opel 2.464.559 2.452.234 0,5% 15,9% 2
3 Renault-Nissan 2.285.409 2.188.065 4,4% 14,8% 3
4 BMW AG 1.039.878 1.026.931 1,3% 6,7% 5
5 Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles 1.038.283 989.504 4,9% 6,7% 6
6 Ford Motor Comp. 1.030.076 1.041.435 -1,1% 6,7% 4
7 Daimler AG 1.006.443 945.723 6,4% 6,5% 7
8 Hyundai-Kia 972.592 929.331 4,7% 6,3% 8
9 Toyota Motor 720.566 639.819 12,6% 4,7% 9
10 Geely 302.263 289.820 4,3% 2,0% 10
11 Suzuki 240.875 198.511 21,3% 1,6% 13
12 Tata Motors 236.533 233.916 1,1% 1,5% 11
13 Mazda 227.784 233.354 -2,4% 1,5% 12
14 Honda 140.430 158.983 -11,7% 0,9% 14
15 Subaru Corp. 35.297 37.189 -5,1% 0,2% 15
16 Tesla Motors 27.986 15.451 81,1% 0,2% 17
17 Mahindra & Mahindra 17.651 19.552 -9,7% 0,1% 16
18 SAIC MG 4.068 4.194 -3,0% 18
19 General Motors 3.350 2.519 33,0% 19
20 Aston Martin 2.484 1.508 64,7% 20


Mercedes_Benz-GLC-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeIn the brands ranking, market leader Volkswagen loses half a percentage point of share and drops below 11% for the first time since 2010. Renault consolidates its #2 spot as its two main rivals both lose volume. Ford is now more than 100.000 sales behind but should make a strong comeback in 2018 on the new Fiesta, even though most of the rest of its line-up is aging. Opel/Vauxhall loses 0,6 percentage points of share and is under threat from its newfound stablemate Peugeot, which gains 0,7 percentage points of share to go from a deficit of 125.000 sales last year to less than 17.000 in 2017. Mercedes-Benz extends its position as Europe’s best selling luxury brand, gaining 2,1 percentage points of share to set new volume and market share records for the brand, distancing Audi and BMW which are separated by just 102 sales, the closest finish between the two brands ever. For BMW this also marks a new volume record, although its market share is down on last year. Audi has now outsold BMW for 9 consecutive years. Fiat and Skoda complete the top-10, while Toyota is closing in quickly. Citroën passes Nissan to take the #12 spot and Dacia leapfrogs Kia to outsell the Korean brand for the third time ever, after 2010 and 2014. Needless to say both Dacia and Kia also sets new volume and market share records, each of them now up to 3% of the European passenger car market. They’re closing in on Hyundai, which passes the 500.000 mark for the first time ever.

Jeep_Compass-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeSeat has its best year since 2004 and falls just short of the 400.000 sales mark, Suzuki leapfrogs Mazda and Mini to enter the top-20 in its best year since 2009. Mini by the way also sets a new volume record for the third year in a row and equals its market share record of last year. Both Jaguar and Land Rover improve on their volume records but lose a bit of market share as they grow slower than the overall market. This is the sixth consecutive year of record sales for Land Rover. Jaguar, together with Porsche and Lancia, is passed by Alfa Romeo which has a nice recovery but is still below its sales of 2012 and before. After passing the 100.000 sales mark in 2016, Jeep sharpens its record for the third straight year, passing Smart while maintaining its share at 0,7%. Porsche improves its volume record for the fourth consecutive year, while Lexus closes in on DS thanks to a small gain to sharpen its European sales record to nearly 45.000 units. Tesla passes SSangYong and naturally improves its sales record thanks to booming sales. If Model 3 deliveries start in 2018, the brand is set to continue this exponential growth rate.

Alpine-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeMaserati improves its annual sales record for the fourth year running and nearly hits five digits with sales up 9-fold since 2012, helped by the Levante SUV. Similarly, Bentley sales are boosted by the Bentayga, breaking the brand’s 2007 record of 3.759 sales. Aston Martin is up to its fifth highest volume after the 2005-2008 period, thanks to the DB11. With the new Vantage in showrooms, the British brand is aiming for a new record in 2018. Lamborghini crosses the 1.000 European sales mark for the very first time, more than doubling its volume in 4 years. With the new Urus ready to be rolled out, the Italian brand isn’t done with its growth curve. Cadillac has the highest sales in Europe since 2010 when it ended sales of the Saab-based entry-level BLS. Finally, we welcome the return of Alpine in the European sales ranking, with 7 registrations of pre-production models of the Alpine A110.

2017 brands ranking

Brand 2017 2016 change 2017 share 2016 share 2016 rank
1 Volkswagen 1.685.053 1.704.547 -1,1% 10,9% 11,4% 1
2 Renault 1.133.277 1.094.374 3,6% 7,3% 7,3% 2
3 Ford 1.030.074 1.041.431 -1,1% 6,7% 6,9% 3
4 Opel/Vauxhall 935.169 984.769 -5,0% 6,0% 6,6% 4
5 Peugeot 917.486 860.927 6,6% 5,9% 5,7% 5
6 Mercedes-Benz 906.385 839.412 8,0% 5,9% 5,6% 6
7 Audi 823.689 827.532 -0,5% 5,3% 5,5% 7
8 BMW 823.587 816.888 0,8% 5,3% 5,4% 8
9 Fiat 769.670 740.622 3,9% 5,0% 4,9% 9
10 Skoda 693.702 654.562 6,0% 4,5% 4,4% 10
11 Toyota 675.620 595.540 13,4% 4,4% 4,0% 11
12 Citroën 566.041 541.082 4,6% 3,7% 3,6% 13
13 Nissan 560.415 547.344 2,4% 3,6% 3,6% 12
14 Hyundai 512.834 498.386 2,9% 3,3% 3,3% 14
15 Dacia 460.891 412.284 11,8% 3,0% 2,7% 16
16 Kia 459.758 430.945 6,7% 3,0% 2,9% 15
17 Seat 397.299 348.138 14,1% 2,6% 2,3% 17
18 Volvo 301.240 289.309 4,1% 1,9% 1,9% 18
19 Suzuki 240.875 198.511 21,3% 1,6% 1,3% 21
20 Mazda 227.784 233.354 -2,4% 1,5% 1,6% 19
21 Mini 215.549 209.230 3,0% 1,4% 1,4% 20
22 Land Rover 167.943 166.777 0,7% 1,1% 1,1% 22
23 Honda 140.430 158.983 -11,7% 0,9% 1,1% 23
24 Mitsubishi 112.994 116.208 -2,8% 0,7% 0,8% 24
25 Jeep 107.569 103.897 3,5% 0,7% 0,7% 26
26 Smart 100.058 106.311 -5,9% 0,6% 0,7% 25
27 Alfa Romeo 86.805 66.155 31,2% 0,6% 0,4% 30
28 Porsche 72.834 69.714 4,5% 0,5% 0,5% 27
29 Jaguar 68.590 67.134 2,2% 0,4% 0,4% 28
30 Lancia-Chrysler 60.705 67.104 -9,5% 0,4% 0,4% 29
31 DS 45.863 65.456 -29,9% 0,3% 0,4% 31
32 Lexus 44.944 44.278 1,5% 0,3% 0,3% 32
33 Subaru 35.297 37.189 -5,1% 0,2% 0,2% 33
34 Tesla 27.986 15.451 81,1% 0,2% 0,1% 35
35 SSangYong 17.221 19.082 -9,8% 0,1% 0,1% 34
36 Infiniti 12.571 13.775 -8,7% 0,1% 0,1% 36
37 Maserati 9.668 7.904 22,3% 0,1% 0,1% 37
38 Lada 5.260 4.080 28,9% 0,0% 0,0% 39
39 SAIC MG 4.068 4.194 -3,0% 0,0% 0,0% 38
40 Bentley 3.912 3.595 8,8% 0,0% 0,0% 40
41 Aston Martin 2.484 1.508 64,7% 0,0% 0,0% 43
42 Ferrari 2.430 2.701 -10,0% 0,0% 0,0% 41
43 Chevrolet 2.398 1.686 42,2% 0,0% 0,0% 42
44 Lamborghini 1.005 941 6,8% 0,0% 0,0% 44
45 Cadillac 916 761 20,4% 0,0% 0,0% 47
46 Lotus 783 874 -10,4% 0,0% 0,0% 45
47 Rolls Royce 742 813 -8,7% 0,0% 0,0% 46
48 Dodge 737 620 18,9% 0,0% 0,0% 48
49 Mahindra 430 470 -8,5% 0,0% 0,0% 50
50 DR 415 476 -12,8% 0,0% 0,0% 49
51 Geely 240 73 228,8% 0,0% 0,0% 52
52 Bugatti 16 7 128,6% 0,0% 0,0% 53
53 Alpine 7 0 New 0,0% 0,0%
54 Great Wall 3 125 -97,6% 0,0% 0,0% 51

European car sales statistics are from the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom. They exclude vehicles registered as commercial vehicles. Source: ANDC, JATO Dynamics

Credits top image: ANWB megatest subcompact cars

  1. OK, Honda Europe is obviously dead, why Honda keeps this agony at all?
    On the other hand nobody wants to buy a Frech Opel and this is pretty normal. French and Italian cars are mainly bought on their local markets, nobody buys them because of reliability or high quality! For me Opel’s condition was expected and will get worse and worse, be sure.
    FCA started January with huge loss in USA and the only market they depend on is Italy, but for how long?

    1. The decline of Opel sales has nothing to do with the purchase of PSA, at least partly yes but not in the sense that you believe

      Firstly there is the decline of the UK market an important market for Opel which is very present but it is mainly due to the policy of PSA which prefers the profitability to the volumes.

      Opel is the specialist in unprofitable sales and fake sales there are plenty of articles that treat the subject, why do you think they have lost money over the last 18 years?
      With PSA they will sell less but it will reflect real sales unlike previous years and they will earn money by 2020 is barely two years after PSA buyout what GM has never managed to do in 18 years.

      1. We will live and see, but I believe in 10 years Opel will disappear like many other brands did up to now.

      2. So many costumers are saying, “I’m not buying an Opel again after PSA takeover”.

      3. You are completely right. Opel has suffered way too long under the GM belt. PSA (i.e. Tavares) gave them a bright future.

        Still many Europeans are conservative. It takes time for them accepting non-German companies helping struggling German companies, because it doesn’t agree with their Teutonic state of mind.

    2. Not really. You should read about new approach of PSA CEO to Opel. They decided to drastically cut discounts on Opel models in order to improve the income. Next step would be to change existing models to common platforms and technology.

      So this is planned strategy, as Opel was selling high but with minimal margins.

      1. Martin don’t cry dude the Renault or the PSA will take Mercedes or BMW after a few years.

      2. And? Let them. Not brands I’m buying. I can still choose between VW, Audi, Skoda, Seat, Cupra, Volvo, Kia, Hyundai and other brands.

    3. Bottom 10 worst cars (source: UK car reliability index):

      1. BMW M5
      2. Maserati GranTurismo
      3. BMW M6
      4. Mercedes-Benz CL
      5. Nissan GT-R
      6. Aston Martin DB9
      7. Mercedes-Benz GL
      8. Bentley Continental GT
      9. Mercedes-Benz R-Class
      10. Citroen C6

      1 Italian car, 1 French car, 1 Japanese car, 2 British cars, 5 German cars.

      See, I only need one example to show your statement is 100% biased.

  2. Wandering how Renault will be doing this year, lineup which was all new in last few years will start to age now, Clio and Capture are at the end of life cycle. I predict fall in sales but question is, will Ford be ale to catch up? Don’t know for other countries but I have not seen a single new Fiesta on road, not even one. It is also loosing loads of volume against Renault with Ecosport, which is a flop and don’t see it becoming any more successful after facelift. Pretty much, Ford will be 2nd if UK saves it, nothing else will. Opel will climb back in 6 years I guess. After they put all cars on common platform with PSA they are set, but they need to find their niche in market next to Peugeot and Citroen.

    I hope Fiat does something with the Punto this year, need to be in front of Skoda. Great hopes for Dacia, will see what new Duster can do, unlike most cars with new model you get more equipment for same pride as before, it seems to me it is what people want. How on earth did Honda manage to loose so much volume with new Civic is beyond me, why we still don’t have new CR-V is also beyond me.
    Interested to see what Alfa does if they go this year without new cars.
    Mercedes Benz is killing it, and it will continue the streak with new A class and FL C-Class. BMW will struggle a bit because 1 and 3 series will be coming next year or end of this year.
    Peugeot will be hammering it for the first half of this year too, until novelty wears off from 3008 and 5008. If the 508 will be able to be pulling power after that, we shall see.
    As for koreans, don’t see anything interesting happening, Santa Fe is a bit to expensive to be big volume, except Cee’d may help Kia climb a bit this year.

  3. @Losange
    You say Europeans are conservative and you are completely right. Actually Western European markets are the most conservative markets on this planet. People there buy local brands, not because they are any good, but because they are chauvinists. For example – Fiat’s line up is super old, except the new Tippo and the new 124, which is actually Mazda, everything else is super old, but Italians still buy them. Same situation with Lancia. Why on Earth they buy these cars, because they are local.
    If you compare durability, reliability, quality and speed of depreciation among for example Fiat, Alfa, Lancia, Peugeot, Citroen, Renault, Toyota, Honda and Subaru, you will see that there is absolutely no conscious reason to buy any of these Italian or French models over any of these 3 Japanese brands, but Europeans do.
    If you are a customer and you have to make such a big purchase like a new car, if you are thinking consciously, you will want the most for your money, right? You will want to buy a car, which is tough, which is very reliable, which has high quality, which will be durable for a long time and since you don’t want to lose money, you want a car, which has very high resale value, right?
    It’s not a secret for nobody all over the world, that Toyota, Honda and Subaru are extremely reliable, very tough and they have wonderful resale value. Better say, these three Japanese brands are complete opposite to Italian, French and some German brands, if we still count Opel for German and also Seat for example.
    If Europeans were not extreme patriots, they would never spend their money for a local manufacturer instead to get the most for their money by buying one of these three Japanese brands, but they are and that’s why very soon Honda, for example, will have to decide if they will stay or they will leave most of the markets in Western Europe!

    1. The point I was trying to make is that people aren’t conservative buyers (local brand favouritism is universal), but conservative thinkers. Just like you, because you still think Italian and French cars are less reliable and so on compared with other cars. That’s why I used the UK reliability index as an example which shows you’re wrong. According to this index the BMW 3 series (score: 212) is less reliable than the last generation Renault Laguna (90) with the average reliability of all cars being 100. In addition, Citroen C1, Citroen C3, Peugeot 107, Peugeot 206, Renault Megane, Renault Scenic, Fiat Punto and Fiat Panda are, amongst other French/Italian cars, part of the top 100 most reliable cars.

      All brands have to deal with quality/reliability problems. Just google a car brand plus problems and you’ll find enough proof. Or did you forget the electronics/engine problems of German brands in recent years? Not to mention the recent scandals.

      People, especially dependent media, aren’t aware of the bias they’re using when comparing/judging things.

      1. 1/ I don’t know whether the reports pertain to customers satisfaction (their demands and expectations were met) or the reports pertain to real numbers of repairs for particular brands. That is the difference, of course.
        2/ Regarding patriotic sales in Europe, I can see that there are countries where the neighbour buys just the make of the car that his o her neighbour had bought several months before. For instance in Slovakia Seat is not common make, but in Germany it was sold 1:2 compared to Skoda which prevails in Slovakia. skoda is a fleet car in Slovakia.
        3/ Opel is no future, I think. I declined buying Opel Crossland X due to its Peugeot three cylinder engine. After reading about Astra K problems, I dismissed Opel Astra – you can see its horrible results for 2017 at this webpage.
        4/ I helped bro keep Seat Company growth by buying Seat Leon which had nice sales even in 2017 despite originating in 2014 or so.

    2. I don’t know, some of us like nice cars and don’t want something that looks dreadfully dull on one hand or over the top on the other. I really am not seeing this unreliability with 10 year old Laguna, 3,5 year old Clio and 5,5 year old VW Up that are at home. Had a Punto before also, ran without problems. Relatives have RAV4 same age and millage as our Laguna and they spet significantly more on repairs then we did.
      You are calling people conservative while talking myths about unreliability of French and Italian cars. Sure, Fiat and Lancia don’t have such a great lineup now but I can think of many reasons why I would take Renault or Peugeot over Honda or Toyota.

      1. Thank you for proving my point. Personal experience often differs from what (mostly German orientated) car media and enthusiasts say.

        Take the talks about speed of depreciation for example. It’s a myth. The only reason why German cars sometimes have a higher price compared with non-German cars is because A) German brands depend more on corporate sales and are therefore ‘more popular’, B) leasing companies (often owned by themselves) try to sell them when they get a new fleet with above average pricing. It’s all artificial which leads to a vicious circle in the heads of people.

        And as for your last sentence, oh definitely, although I do like the new Civic sedan and C-HR. Still think it’s a pity their larger mainstream cars (Accord, Camry) aren’t available anymore in Europe.

  4. And no-one mentions Suzuki.
    First to mass market with a light hybrid.
    Ignis sells more than 40,000, and must be a serious threat to the aging Panda.
    And new Swift waiting in the wings.
    Could start to steal some of Toyota’s old clothes.

    1. Great for Suzuki and much needed as well, but I really don’t understand why people buy the Ignis. Once people look beyond its questionable retro design (gimmick imo) I expect a sales drop, because at the end of the day it’s a very cheap car. Even for this segment the finishing is subpar, the isolation is bad and the ride is terrible. Pricing is therefore way too high. I’d even prefer a Ford Ka+.

      Just like the Seat Ibiza, the new Swift has trouble getting into gear. Maybe Suzuki has to deal with the Opel Corsa effect?

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