After exploring the April 2015 auto brands sales, we’ll take a closer look at the most successful car models in Europe. Naturally, the Volkswagen Golf is still Europe’s best selling model, but its sales are down year-on-year for the first time in 20 months, as the new 7th generation Golf is starting to mature. An amazing performance of the Renault Clio in second place, outselling its rivals Ford Fiesta, VW Polo and Opel/Vauxhall Corsa by a large margin thanks to sales up 15,5%. This moves the Clio not far behind the Fiesta in the year-to-date ranking, giving it a shot at the #2 position by year-end, especially considering the Fiesta is starting to show its age. The Clio is in no way cannibalized by the introduction of the Captur small crossover two years ago, which continues its winning streak, improving another 20% on last year.
The Ford Focus hold on to the sixth place it already held last month, confirming the facelift is well-accepted by European car buyers. The Focus should be able to move into that same position by the end of the year, passing the Nissan Qashqai. Behind the compact Ford, the Volkswagen Passat returns to the top-10 for the first time since November 2012, while the Passat’s main rival the all-new Ford Mondeo is starting to gain traction, closing in on the Opel/Vauxhall Insignia, but still a long way from threatening the Passat, which sells almost triple its volume.
The Audi A3 is surprisingly stable, ranking in 8th position in April after three consecutive #9 finishes. The Peugeot 308 hits its best ranking of this year in 12th place, still clearly ahead of the Opel/Vauxhall Astra, and it will continue to do so until the new generation Astra hits showrooms by the end of this year. Sell-out pricing with huge discounts for the outgoing model keep the Astra alive and actually up compared to last year.
The Dacia Sandero has another blockbuster month with sales up 21%, in 15th place, its third-highest position ever and the first time to outsell the Toyota Yaris since December 2013, while the new generation Skoda Fabia almost equals its stellar performance of last month to clock its second-best month in almost 3 years, just inside the top-20.
The Fiat Panda closes in on its sibling Fiat 500, while in the red-hot small crossover segment the Peugeot 2008 (#18, +19,3%) and Opel/Vauxhall Mokka (#22, +38,8%) take their distance from the Dacia Duster (#26, +1%) and Nissan Juke (#57, -3,7%). The latter is now under threat from the Fiat 500X in #60, while the other newcomer Jeep Renegade keeps improving as well to #85.
BMW’s small cars are having a blast, with the new Mini probably boosted by the 5-door version almost doubling its sales and jumping to #29 and the BMW 2-Series improving to a record 51st place thanks to the front-wheel drive MPV version Active Tourer. However, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class (#23) maintains its position above its rival BMW 3-Series (#27), and the Mercedes-Benz GLA (#78) now clearly outsells the Mini Countryman (#101) and BMW X1 (#110), but still can’t touch the facelifted Audi Q3, which is up 19,4% in 45th place.
One segment up, the BMW X4 reaches its highest volume ever in #131 and outselling the Mercedes-Benz GLK (#137), which will soon be replaced by the all-new GLC. Meanwhile, the already 7-year-old Volvo XC60 (#57) has its second-best month ever, after last month, and the all-new Land Rover Discovery Sport (#112) is taking the fight to its sibling Range Rover Evoque (#96), with just 700 units between them.
The Subaru Legacy and Outback (#171) have been renewed and more than double their sales of last year, instantly becoming the brand’s second best-selling model, just like the all-new Suzuki Vitara in #117. The Vitara is expected to become Suzuki’s best selling model, ahead of the subcompact Swift, and considering it’s only just been introduced and already closing in quickly, that doesn’t seem like a stretch target.
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