The large SUV segment in Europe has rebounded strong from its record low in 2013, with sales almost back up to 2012 levels and the first year-over-year increase since 2006. This year sales should consolidate before improving further in 2016 thanks to the introduction of new and redesigned models.
The Hyundai Santa Fe increases its hold on the segment now that its limited supply has somewhat been relieved. The Santa Fe now holds a share of almost 35% of the segment, which should drop slightly this year as the model awaits its facelift at the end of 2015. The new generation Sorento will reach showrooms in the second quarter and may help increase the combined share of Hyundai-Kia even beyond the current 59% of the segment’s sales.
The Toyota Land Cruiser grows slower than the segment, despite the facelift of the Prado version, and the model was outsold by the Mitsubishi Pajero (named Montero in Spain and Shogun in the UK) in the third and fourth quarters, although the difference between the two models was only 7 units in Q4.
The SsangYong Rexton is still the fastest growing model of the segment, as the South-Korean SUV brand in Indian ownership continues to make inroads in Europe by adding dealerships and making its return to the market known to potential buyers. The other truly Indian SUV, the Mahindra XUV500 is surprisingly stable.
While the Nissan Pathfinder won’t be replaced in Europe, the brand will launch an all-new Murano in the last quarter of 2015, keeping its polarizing design. And 2015 will also bring an all-new model to the segment, the only model from a non-Asian manufacturer, as Ford gets ready to launch its US-built Edge for the first time in Europe, in line with its One Ford strategy. In the US, Ford’s home market, the Edge sells about as many units as the Santa Fe and Sorento do. In Europe, I expect it to remain a niche player, as the Koreans have well-known nameplates that have sold more than 350.000 units and more than 250.000 units respectively in the last 15 years, while the Edge is completely unknown in Europe. But it could lay a strong foundation for the next generation Edge to tackle the large SUV segment.
Large SUV segment
Hyundai Santa Fe
Toyota Land Cruiser
Click on any model to see its annual sales from 1997-2013 and monthly sales in 2012, 2013 and 2014, or use the dropdown menu in the top right of this site. Sources: Manufacturers, ANDC, JATO Dynamics.
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