After a strong rebound last year, sales of large MPVs are down for three consecutive quarters, including a 19% drop in sales in Q3 with all players down by double digits except for one. Just over 100.000 units were sold in the first nine months of 2017, a decline of 17% on the same period in 2016. The Ford S-Max holds on to the segment lead despite a 25% decline in Q3, a similar decline as its sister model Ford Galaxy, which was in fourth place for the quarter but remains in 5th place year-to-date. The share of the segment for the two Fords drops from 40,2% to 39%, while the VW Group twins improve their share from 40,8% to 45,2%. Keep in mind that the Volkswagen Sharan and Seat Alhambra are by far the oldest models still on sale in the segment, having been introduced in 2010, compared to late 2015/early 2016 for the S-Max and Galaxy. The Alhambra loses 14% in Q3 and is down to third place behind its sister model Sharan which is the only nameplate to improve this quarter at +1%. Year-to-date, the Seat is still ahead of the VW but they’re close enough to make it a battle for 2nd place by the end of the year.
The biggest loser of the segment is the Renault Espace again, with a 41% decline in Q3 and a 33% loss so far this year with less than 15.000 sales in the first three quarters of the year. Its advantage over the Galaxy is large enough to hold on to 4th place of the segment it once started in the early 1980s, but it may be a different story for 2018. The SsangYong Rodius is the only model in the segment that’s still in positive territory year-to-date, but it was down by 10% in Q3 so it may not finish the year in the black. For 2018 we don’t expect any big news, as Volkswagen hasn’t revealed any plans about the future of its models, when they will be replaced, if at all.
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