The midsized SUV segment remains stable, growing just 1% in 2013, which still compares favorably to an overall-market decline of 2%.
No surprises for the top two spots, as the Nissan Qashqai and Volkswagen Tiguan remain firmly in place.
The Qashqai is due to be replaced this year, and will undoubtedly hold on to the top spot again, possibly topping 200.000 annual sales for the fifth consecutive year.
Behind the Tiguan, the Kia Sportage has leapfrogged its cousin Hyundai ix35, but the biggest increase comes from the Mazda CX-5, almost doubling its 2012 sales and moving from #11 to 7th place.
The Mitsubishi Outlander has also shown great gains, thanks to sales of the PHEV Plug-In Hybrid version, which sold over 8.000 units in The Netherlands, where government incentives on EV’s and Plug-in hybrids have had a huge effect on the sales charts. The Outlander PHEV will become available for the rest of Europe this year, so it may give the otherwise totally uninspiring SUV another boost for 2014.
The Outlander will easily surpass its smaller sibling ASX, which has seen sales halve since 2011. That model’s twins Citroën C4 Aircross and Peugeot 4008 are selling at a much lower pace than the original, but at least increased sales slightly in 2013.
The Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V and Subaru Forester have taken advantage of their new generation this year, up 32%, 28% and 14% respectively. The Honda CR-V was even the overall best selling car in Estonia in 2013.
The Skoda Yeti has been facelifted for 2014 and may regain some of the sales lost this year, but I’m not sure it will be able to keep the Mazda CX-5 off its back. New for 2013 was the Suzuki S-Cross, which has sold almost 9.000 units in four months on the market, meaning it has its sights set on a top 10 position for 2014.
The same can be said for the new Nissan X-Trail, which will show a totally different design than the outgoing model. It will no longer be a body-on-frame SUV, but a unibody crossover, taking styling cues from its smaller sibling Qashqai. As a result, it should be able to become a worthy competitor to the RAV4, CR-V and Outlander.
The new generation Jeep Cherokee has done the same thing as the X-Trail: switching from a truck-chassis to a car-chassis, with softer and more rounded styling. It will be introduced in Europe this year, after it has launched successfully in North America.
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