European sales 2017 Midsized car segment

Midsized_car-segment-European-sales-2017_Q3-Volkswagen_Passat-Skoda_Superb-Opel_InsigniaSales of midsized cars in Europe have returned to decline in 2017 after a sharp rebound in 2015 and stable sales in 2016. The segment which sold over 1 million units as recently as 10 years ago is now down to its second lowest volume ever, after 2014. At nearly 543.000 sales, mainstream midsized cars now account for just 3,5% of the European market, down from 4,2% in 2016 and from 6,9% in 2007. Only one nameplate in the segment has been able to add volume last year and only three saw single digit declines with the remaining players in double digit decline. Segment leader Volkswagen Passat did slightly better than the rest of the segment at -11% to increase its share to over one third of the segment. Its platform sibling Skoda Superb holds on to 2nd place which means that for the first time ever, a VW-Skoda duo finishes on top of the annual ranking in both the compact and midsized segments. VW Group increases its share of the segment to 48,8% with these two models. The Opel/Vauxhall Insignia is the only model to even come close to the dominant players, with stable sales for the year but a 62% gain in Q4 thanks to the new generation. In fact, the Insignia outsold the Superb in both the third and fourth quarter and should be able to claim second place in 2018.

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_car-segment-European-sales-2017
Photo credit: Auto Motor und Sport

The Ford Mondeo is the biggest loser in the top-5 with a 21% loss and 1 percentage point of share lost. At least it has a large enough buffer to the rest of the segment, as the Renault Talisman suffers a 43% loss in Q4 to finish its second full year in the red with a 6% decline. The Toyota Avensis, Mazda6 and Peugeot 508 all lose more than 20% of their volume, with the latter as the hardest hit but at least a replacement is expected to be revealed at the Geneva Auto Show in March. It will be a traditional sedan but with a much sleeker design, as opposed to Citroën which will replace the C5 with a crossover. The Mazda6 has just been slightly updated and the Avensis may be replaced by the US Camry as it’s just not profitable anymore to develop a Europe-only model in this class. The only winner in the segment is the Kia Optima, up 70%, helped by the addition of a station wagon version which allows it to overtake its stablemate Hyundai i40, subsequently down 25%. Combined, the two models are up 5,5% for the year, but down 14,9% in Q4, more than the overall market which dipped 10% in the last quarter.

In 2018 the new generation 508 will be the only big news in this segment. Ford will give the Mondeo a facelift to freshen the model up and so will Skoda with the Superb, while the i40 is expected not to be replaced after the current generation but it will be updated once more.

Also check out the midsized car segment in the US, which is down by even more and which is dominated by 3 Japanese players and the VW Passat is down in 9th place.

Midsized segment 2017 2016 Change
1 Volkswagen Passat 183.288 206.813 -11%
2 Skoda Superb 81.410 85.879 -5%
3 Opel/Vauxhall Insignia 72.347 73.161 -1%
4 Ford Mondeo 56.173 70.900 -21%
5 Renault Talisman 32.163 34.344 -6%
6 Toyota Avensis 25.319 34.998 -28%
7 Mazda6 23.090 29.226 -21%
8 Peugeot 508 22.842 37.104 -38%
9 Kia Optima 16.152 9.515 70%
10 Hyundai i40 15.251 20.253 -25%
11 Subaru Legacy / Outback 7.016 8.242 -15%
12 Citroën C5 4.939 9.464 -48%
13 Subaru Levorg 2.865 4.689 -39%
14 Honda Accord 16 49 -67%
15 Renault Laguna 2 134 -99%
16 Chevrolet Malibu 1 6 -83%
17 Suzuki Kizashi 1 0
Segment total 542.947 625.185 -13%

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. No it wouldn’t, I don’t see it having place in Europe, it doesn’t bring anything new to segment, just another meh Toyota in segment where most cars are bought on a lease by companies.

      1. Meh or not, it sold 650 048 units last year globally and it is second bestselling mid-sized/full-sized car in the world (after Accord) with over 19 million copies. Hom many Talismans, Lagunas, 508s, C5s and so on were sold last year, or the year before?

      2. They also sell a lot of Optimas and they used to sell loads of Honda Accord in USA but did this help them sell loads of them in Europe? I don’t see it. I mean, who will buy a non premium Japanese limousine in Europe, in a segment where most cars sold are estates? They would sell some of them but nothing significant, not worth the hassle in time of SUVs, bringing bland Japanese limousine made for USA in Europe is recipe for failure. Don’t want to be rude but you are not from Europe are you? Or you don’t know EU car culture well enough.

      3. I’m from Europe, I just don’t like small hatchbacks, which BTW are everywhere. I mean, I have never understood why people here, in Europe, like small cars? My first car was a Ford Sierra sedan, many years ago, it was not too big, but a perfect size for my understandings. After that I bought a Rover 45 – huge mistake, that car had soooo many problems. After that I had an Alfa Romeo 146, not a big car, but still bigger than what most of my friends used to have – Clios, Golfs, 206s and I never got why people want to be in a small unconfortable car. I bought an Opel Vectra C, its a big car for European standarts and its very comfortable, but its poor GM quality made me crazy. My wife used to have a Honda Jazz – too small for my understandings and extremely uncomfortable car, but it was the strongest car I have ever seen. This little Honda didn’t break even once during the 12 years period she had it. Great car it was. Now I tried to import a Camry for me and a Highlander for my wife, but with shipping costs and all the taxes, when these cars arrive in Europe they cost way more than they cost brand new in USA or Canada, even Russian version of Camry (Toyota Aurion) is expensive to be imported. The obvious question would be, why not buy an European car in this size, well because I have only bad examples around me. My brother bought a brand new Seat last year, top trim level, everything which Seat offered was in that car and it started to make troubles exactly 6 months after he bought it. My father in law used to have a Citroen Picasso and it looked like a perfect family car, if it wasn’t breaking so much during the years.
        So, I used drive small cars (never class mini or class A, only from class B up), but I have never understood, why here people love them so much? I makes no sence. And please do not tell me that lack of space is the problem. If you can park an Audi Q7, Mercedes GL or Volvo XC90 in Rome, Paris, London or Berlin, you can park them everywhere in Europe and people still have these cars and park them, right!
        What what’s so cool of small hatchbacks like Golf, Focus, Clio or the starngest and most unpractical of all Fiat 500 and all of its variations????

      4. Funny to mention that, I never understood the love of big cars. I don’t see reason for them unless you are either old and all that is important to you is comfort or you need loads of space because of big family, but impractical 4 door sedan is not your first choice if you have 3 kids. Why I love small cars, first, way better to drive in town and country roads, way more involving then big barge to drive, and I do classify Laguna we have as a big car.Second; So much more practical, we got a stove in a VW UP, try that in 4 door car, It won’t fit, and it doesn’t matter if the car is 1,5 m longer then Up. We got huge glass door in Laguna because of hatch, we were able to bring many things home on our own just because we have hatchbacks. Third; you feel more involved in driving because you are not so isolated. Fourth; you can get a new smaller car with modern tech instead of old abused dated barge for the same price. If I get a chance to buy a new Clio/Polo/Fiesta or used BMW 5 series/A6/ E class, couple of years old I will always take the new, smaller car.
        As far as I’m concerned, if you like driving smaller car is way better, drove back to back Lexus IS and Lexus GS. Liked IS, hated GS, I hated RX even more but that is all another story.

        But ok , that was all faf why you like big cars and I don’t, but I still don’t know why would Toyota need to bring Camry over here, if something as good to drive as Giulia don’t mix up segment I can’t see why a mediocre fwd Toyota with trunk would? I quite like that cars for america stay there, don’t see reason why we would want them.

      5. Blaz, I have to agree with Jonny about the big car confort. My parents have a 2000 E-class saloon with 250K without a single mechanical problem and is amazingly confortable. Last year we prefered to take it on our holidays because my baby daughter doesn’t really like the (comparable) stiff suspension of my 2010 Megane hatch which has been a constant nightmare engine wise, with problems on the Egr valve, dpf clogged and multiples engine warnings, and it has only done 110K… On a day to day basis, the hatch is confortable enough, is economical, easier to drive and park. But for long distance cruising, nothing beats the big saloon/break

      6. And I also think that Toyota, and also Honda, should bring their big sedans to Europe. I mean, would it be too difficult for them to meet European legislation? Or even adopting a diesel variant or implementing a LPG version of one of their petrol engines currently in their line-up? I remember the Subaru Legacy used to have a LPG version which sold reasonably well… I think the more choices we have the better, not everyone loves silver, some might like green, others love red, a few want blue and white should definitely be a choice (see what I did here?! )

      7. VJAM, egr and dpf probems has nothing to do with the segment, it happens in all the brands, a 2000 Mercedes lacks a lot of modern tecnhologies so it’s normal that is more reliable than a modern vehicle, but if you get a more modern Mercedes, probably you won’t be so lucky because modern cars are a lot more complex than the old ones.

        I also agree that Honda and Toyota should bring their D segment cars to Europe, but without a wagon version their sales would be very low. They would need to develop a wagon version.

      8. Blaž Potočnik, this segment has very specific characteristics in Europe. This is the segment of passenger cars that depends more on sales to business fleets which usually have low profit margins. So, there are two options, to sell a lot for business fleets or to sell more for private buyers with higher profit margins. Toyota is not strong in Europe in business sales, so they should try to sell the Camry for private buyers with good profit margins like the Mazda 6 ou the Talisman, but they would need to develop a wagon version. Cars like the Insígnia may sell well but with low or even no profit at all, so the sales numbers in this segment are not very reliable.

    2. I think if there’s no wagon and diesel version, it has no chance, and even witht those body and engine types it wouldn’t sell better, than the Mondeo and the Insignia.

  1. 2017 was the first full year for both (sedan grandtour) Talisman versions, so -6% and -43%(!!!)in Q4 is a real disaster for still new car on the market

  2. Sad to see Talisman doing so bad, it looks so good, compared to something as boring as Superb is really beautiful car but they missed the bus with it, new engines are coming this year, including 2.0 Dci.

    As for 508, it is not classic sedan, it will be liftback/hatchback as was Laguna and it will have frameless doors.

    1. Where can you find such information about 2.0 dci coming soon for the 2018 model of Talisman?

      But if you post a link your comment might not show up.

      1. Heard it on French forums last year, also seen news from Czech Renault specialist website. Also 1.6 Dci is beeing replaced by 1.7 Dci with 120 and 150 HP( same thing as is 1.3 to 1.2 tce, same updated block). Will try to fins link and part it into two pieces. Also facelift is due next year.

    2. Well, this entire segment is doing terrible… It’s not just the Talisman.
      However, the Talisman is “safe” since it sells quite well in South Korea as the Samsung SM6.

      Maybe this segment will ressuscitate with the Japan-EU free-trade agreement. Toyota and Honda will be able to import the Camry and Accord to Europe so that might save this segment but I wouldn’t hold out any hopes.

      1. It is selling incredibly well in the Middle East( UAE), together with Koleos. Not going that well in Korea though, that is true.

    3. Blaž Potočnik, thanks for the information. I found the website and read the news.

      Very interesting info – 2.0dci with 200 hp, not even Koleos has it. Finally Renault realises it cannot only has weak engines, many people in my country complain about the 1.6 or lower engines – they want 2.0dci/tce or more. Also there are a lot of R-Link complaints, but that will get better with time. Main issue, I think, is the lack of up to date maps.

      As for 1.7dci – offered in 120hp? 1.6dci was 130. So – 1,5dci = 110hp, 1.7 – 120hp, 1.7 – 150, 2.0dci 160hp and 200. 1.6dci might be dropped, but probably they won’t offer such a choice anyways.

      It would be great if they release the facelift in 2018. It is already 2018 and there is still NO 2018 model on sale, not in the pricelists either. It is still the 2017 specification.

      1. I think Renault always does that, MY17 came in March or April. 1.6 Dci will “morph” into 1.7 Dci. I think after great Clio launch Renault had great chance to ride on it’s success but it failed because of lack of engine choices and also some quality problems( feels like early 2000s all over again). As for R-Link, this version in Megane/Talisman is the last version, Clio V will inaugurate Symbioz style screen setup and it will run new SW and will be shared with Nissan. I’m kind of afraid, after what I’m hearing about Clio that it will run down Megane in terms of kit and features.

      2. Blaz, Renault nowdays is one of the most reliable European car brands, check out the British reliability index or the Swedish Länsförsäkringars maskinskaderapport, for example 😉

  3. @CSB……love the website and the adjustments. Do you guys have the possibility of giving the ‘enter’ button a meaningful life on this website? 😉 When I hit ‘enter’ and leaving lines open I don’t see it in my reply. The option of editing would be nice as well. This would enhance the website’s readability.

    D segment suffers a lot. Passat is lucky for having its privilege as a ‘popular’ corporate car, otherwise the gap between #1 and the others wouldn’t be this artificial. Wake up EU! Mondeo can’t replicate the stable performance of family member Focus. Probably people know the car is much older than on paper. Talisman can’t do better than 5th place and -6% is better than the performance of the entire segment. Kia deserves its spot showing a healthy rise due to the Optima station wagon.

      1. Thanks for the feedback, guys. I agree and we’ll look into it, but so far it doesn’t seem possible with the current version of our comment software.

  4. Renault what did you do to the 300k/ year car laguna. Shame that generation 3 was such not special from day one, it looked just like a 1998 primera + gen. 2 laguna. Launcing facilifted version as original would have made laguna see lot more owners with a design matched that times audi and launching renault sm7 as 2011 model.

    1. As an ex-owner of Laguna 2 Phase 1 and current owner of Laguna 3 Phase II i have something to say here. As the L2 was a quality disaster Renault has tried to cut off the new technologies to stabilise quality, which they actually managed to do quite well. However design was bland and rear was hated by a lot of people, but when you see it you knew it’s the Laguna. Renault largerly improved the front in Phase 2, but did nothing to the rear. I would imagine how the Laguna 3 would have sold if it had the L3 Coupe rear…

  5. Talisman numbers are normal taking into account that this car don’t have a 2.0cc diesel engine and RHD version (it’s not present in UK and Ireland). In this segment Renault is looking for profit and not for volume, Talisman probably is more profitable than Insignia, and this year will receive a lot more new engines and features, it’s a great vehicle.

    Also the South Korean Talisman, Samsung SM6, sells very well and also in Middle East.

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