Sales of compact crossovers in Europe maintain their explosive growth rate, jumping 29% in Q2 and 33% in the first half, to 720.194 units. This is 8,6% of the total European market, almost 2 percentage points up from the 6,7% in the first half of 2016. The Nissan Qashqai holds on to its top spot for the first half, but sales were up only 2% in the second quarter as it was outsold by the Volkswagen Tiguan by 300 sales. It seems like the Qashqai will keep its crown of the segment for yet another year, extending its streak to 11 years as the compact crossover champion. The all-new Peugeot 3008 SUV storms up the charts to third place, up from #6 in the first quarter, proving it is an instant hit for the French brand. It’s unlikely to be able to challenge the two top players in this segment, considering it was still at only 75% of their volume in the second quarter, but nonetheless an impressive performance for a newcomer to the segment. It also manages to outsell the two South-Korean models which have been around for a few generations now and have built up quite some recognition and a customer base over the years.
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
It seems however that the increased competition is hurting the Hyundai Tucson and the Kia Sportage this year. The Tucson is down 2% in Q2 and up just 6% for the half, meaning it loses almost 3 percentage points of share compared to last year. The Sportage does even worse, losing 16% in the quarter for a 9% loss in the half, down 4,5 percentage points of share as the duo goes from 28,1% to just 20,9% of the segment. Fair enough, the Sportage may feel some internal competition from the slightly smaller, but hybrid Kia Niro. Meanwhile, the Ford Kuga continues its steady improvement. It has grown its sales for 4 years in a row and 2017 is sure to make that 5, with a 23% gain in the first half, moving it ahead of the Sportage and the Renault Kadjar, and within spitting distance of the Tucson. The Kadjar has been unable to copy the success of the Qashqai and is down 14% in Q2, less than 100 sales behind the Sportage. Now that the Megane and Scenic have ended their supply issues, the Kadjar may feel some internal competition, as well as from the larger Koleos.
The Seat Ateca consolidates its 8th place, taking 5,7% of the segment, which is above the brand’s own projections of about 5%. The new generation Mazda CX-5 still needs to gain some traction, as the model is down 9% in Q2. The MG GS is finally starting to get noticed by its UK audience, but remains a wallflower with just over 100 monthly sales in Q2. The new generation Jeep Compass has just arrived in showrooms but customer deliveries haven’t gotten off the ground yet. We welcome the Opel/Vauxhall Grandland X wiht the first few demo models before sales officially start in September.
A lot of news can be expected again in the upcoming 12 months, promising another year of growth for the segment: Subaru will renew the XV, the Citroën C5 Aircross will make it into showrooms this year too, if not 2018. Mitsubishi will launch a third crossover to fit between the ASX and Outlander: the Eclipse Cross. Ford will do the same, adding a model between the EcoSport and Kuga, although also not likely before 2018.
In the midsized crossover segment, Nissan is the leader too, although the X-Trail edged out a win in Q2 by just 100 sales, ahead of the Toyota RAV4. For the first half, the X-Trail is up 22% with a margin of 2.200 sales to the RAV4, which is up 11%. But a couple of newcomers are storming up the charts, most notably the Skoda Kodiaq, which was already the #2 in both April and June. The Kodiaq has climbed onto the segment podium for the first half and is squarely aiming for a top spot in the second half of the year, although it may be too little too late to grab the full year title. The #4 in the second quarter was the Peugeot 5008, climbing to 6th place for the half, and it hasn’t even shown its full potential yet. It outsold the Mitsubishi Outlander and Honda CR-V in Q2 and will challenge them for the segment 4th place by the end of the year.
The Outlander was down 15% in the second quarter and lost 12% in the half, but that means it has gotten closer to the CR-V, which was down even worse at -28% in Q2 and -22% in the half, as the new generation has already been released in North America and other parts of the world, but there’s no sign of it yet in Europe. The Subaru Forester has become a stable and trustworthy seller for the brand that has very little to cheer about in Europe, as the market is just an afterthought for Subaru, which makes most of its money in the US. We welcome the new generation Renault Koleos this quarter, and it too should be able to make itself noticed in the top-6 within the next few months, considering it already easily outsold the Forester in June while it was still in start-up mode.
Later this year we’ll welcome the 7-seater Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace and another Seat crossover that’s based on that Allspace and the Kodiaq. Nissan will give the X-Trail the same facelift it already gave the Rogue in the US. As mentioned, no word yet on when we can expect the new CR-V.
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