European sales 2016 Q1-Q3 Premium Midsized segment

Midsized_Premium_car-segment-European-sales-2016_Q2-Mercedes_Benz_C_Class-Audi_A4-BMW_3_seriesThe premium midsized car segment improves 7% in the first three quarters of 2016, almost in line with the overall market at +7,5%, and better than the mainstream midsized car segment at +5%. As in most premium car segments, the German brands dominate, with almost 86% of cars sold in this class having a German badge, but at least that figure is falling (last year it was over 87%) thanks to increased competition from Jaguar and Alfa Romeo, even if the latter is still gearing up. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class is stable on last year, which means it loses share of the segment, but it holds on to the lead of the segment, outselling its closest rival the redesigned Audi A4 by 3.000 units in Q3. The BMW 3-Series is left behind in a distant third place, even though it grows 3% on last year. Keeping in mind the C-Class doesn’t split sales of its coupe and convertible models the way its rivals do with the A5 and 4-Series, it’s safe to conclude the A4 is the leader when it comes to sedan and station wagon sales.

Note: clicking on the model name opens the sales data page for that model; clicking year in the legend turns the display for that year on/off

Midsized_Premium_car-sales-Europe-2016-Alfa_Romeo_Giulia-Jaguar_XELooking at total brand volume, Audi is also the leader, just 250 units ahead of BMW, both in the 163.000 range, while Mercedes-Benz is third with less than 135.000 sales. Volvo is the best non-German again with its S60 and V60, even though the duo was outsold by the Audi A5, which is in sell-out mode before the new generation hits showrooms later this year. The Jaguar XE is already losing momentum, down in each of the last four months when compared to last year, just after its introduction. Perhaps this will stimulate Jaguar in its decision to launch a station wagon version of the XE after all. The Alfa Romeo Giulia is slowly starting to gain traction, entering the segment top-8 in Q3 and selling within 200 units of the XE in both August and October. Automotive News (with data supplied by JATO) has looked at pure sedan sales in continental Europe, as the Giulia hadn’t started sales in the UK before September, and in this ranking the Giulia was the #4 in September, not far behind the A4:

September midsize premium sedan sales in Continental Europe with % change:

  1. Mercedes-Benz C-Class 4.300 -16%
  2. BMW 3-Series 3.033 +11%
  3. Audi A4 2.091 +55%
  4. Alfa Romeo Giulia 1.718 New
  5. Jaguar XE 845 -26%
  6. Volvo S60 503 -19%
  7. Lexus IS 340 +28%
  8. Infiniti Q50 209 +32%

Alfa Romeo is working on a station wagon version of the Giulia as well, to boost sales of the nameplate in Europe. The DS5 and Volkswagen CC will be passed by the Italian player by year-end as the former is quickly losing ground and the latter is being phased out to make room for the Arteon. The Japanese entries are stuck at the bottom of the segment, with the Lexus IS still selling at double the rate of the Infiniti Q50 and the RC coupe version has found its stride at 500 sales per quarter.

Also check out the premium midsized car segment in the US, which is in a big recession as sales plummet 17% and all existing models lose volume, with just two in single digits, all others lose double digits and the leading BMW duo is the biggest loser of the segment.

Premium midsized car segment 2016 Q3 2015 Q3 Change
1 Mercedes-Benz C-Class 134.720 135.122 0%
2 Audi A4 / S4 / RS4 128.645 99.777 29%
3 BMW 3-series 109.809 106.440 3%
4 BMW 4-series 53.545 56.708 -6%
5 Volvo S60/V60 36.565 37.624 -3%
6 Audi A5 / S5 / RS5 35.025 36.044 -3%
7 Jaguar XE 19.781 9.912 100%
8 DS5 7.434 8.783 -15%
9 Volkswagen CC 5.427 8.425 -36%
10 Alfa Romeo Giulia 5.106 0 New
11 Lexus IS 5.026 5.953 -16%
12 Infiniti Q50 2.237 2.308 -3%
13 Lexus RC 1.519 372 308%
  Segment total 544.839 507.468 7%

Click on any model to see its annual sales from 1997-2016 and monthly sales from 2012 to 2016, or use the dropdown menu in the top right of this site.

Car sales statistics are from the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland.

Sources: Manufacturers, ANDC, JATO Dynamics.

  1. As I had predicted Alfa Giulia is a fail, in a few years Alfa will become like Lancia they will only sell cars in Italy.

    1. Hi Forza,
      keep in mind the Giulia is still in start-up mode. It hasn’t yet been available in the UK and is not yet available as a station wagon. As you can see in the table for continental European sedan sales, it was actually not that far behind the Audi A4 in September, and selling at double the rate of the XE.
      I’d wait a little bit longer before drawing any conclusions on failure or success.
      But maybe I’m just prejudiced because I want them to succeed and keep making great looking and awesomely driving cars….

    2. No, Alfa deserves a better future. The new attempt is well established, with top platform, engines, interior, set-up and of course exterior. The decline of Mito sales will not show the real impact of Giulia, but nevertheless the sales will be very impressive in Europe. Stelvio will be a real hit, especially in US. Keep in mind that the prices are high which in relation with the sales number until now, further reveal how good a car it is. Don’t forget the very good reviews and the awards that the are gaining (like the one of the Top Gear). Your prediction is with “high risk”!

  2. The new Alfa can only be evaluated after the Stelvio and the Alfa wagon are introduced in Europe. with only one model in the market and introduction in May 06 The Giulia is doing well………….

  3. I can’t see here Mondeo, Passat, Superb, japanese Avensis, Mazda 6, Accord. Nowone can tell me that these cars are less “premium” midsized cars.

    1. @Goran Of course they are not premium. Cars you mentioned are mainstream brands and you can find them on different list. What’s premium about Superb for example? it’s even budget 🙂

      1. Superb use same engines, same platform, a lot common with A4. It’s even bigger, more comfortable, and not a lot cheaper (model Laurent & Klement can be even more expencive, even 65.000 €). Same commets are aboit Passat. What about japanese offer?

  4. Honda, Toyota, Nissan all have premium brands separated. Mazda has good quality but… small range of options, engines etc. So this is not premium either in my opinion.

    Superb has good technology but it doesnt make it premium.

    Have a nice weekend

  5. The Superb and the Passat are built on the MQB platform, the A4 is on the MLB. So the A4 and Superb are quite different.

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