The midsize segment in Europe as a whole saw a sharp decline of 22% in 2013, as a result of a clear shift towards premium models in this segment. In fact, if we would combine the premium midsize with this segment, BMW 3-series, Audi A4 and Mercedes-Benz C-class would hold the 1st, 3rd and 4th place of the combined segment respectively. However, the premium midsized models have not been spared in 2013, as their segment declined as well, although slower than their non-premium rivals, at -8%.
Only one midsized car has been able to sell more units in 2013 than in 2012, the Mazda6 has its new generation to thank for that. All other models show double digit declines, leaving the segment ranking relatively stable. No changes at the top, where the Volkswagen Passat is still by far the leader, selling more than twice as many cars as the number two of the segment, just like the Golf does in the compact segment.
The smallest declines in the top 5 are from models that have been facelifted in 2013, the Skoda Superb and the Opel/Vauxhall Insignia. The latter is most popular in the UK, as almost 37% of all Insignia’s are sold with a Vauxhall badge.
Again, the French are among the biggest losers, with the Peugeot 508, Citroën C5 and Renault Laguna all down more than 30%. Only the Citroën DS5 managed to do better than the segment average, possibly thanks to the Hybrid4 diesel-hybrid option, which helps it in countries with incentives for green cars. For example in The Netherlands, where the DS5 is sold almost 6,5 as many times as the its C5 sibling.
The Hyundai i40 was still in positive territories after 9 months, but has gone down quickly in the last quarter, as the model ages quickly, just like its cousin Kia Optima. The Koreans may be successful with minicars and crossovers, they still have a long way to go in the midsize segment.
New models are expected in 2014 for the Volkswagen Passat and the long-awaited Ford Mondeo, which has already been on sale as the Fusion in the United States for over a year. A few other models will be updated this year, most notably the Peugeot 508 and the Citroëns C5 and DS5. These three models will also get new, more fuel efficient engines, which should help them regain some ground in 2014 or at least stabilize the decline.
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