European sales 2018 midsized MPV segment

Midsized_MPV-segment-European-sales-2018-Renault_Scenic-Volkswagen_Touran-Citroen_C4_SpacetourerThe midsized MPV segment in Europe has declined for the third consecutive year and 2018 shows the biggest loss yet with a loss of 20% on the previous year to over 600.000 sales, the lowest annual sales since 1999, not long after the Renault Megane Scenic jumpstarted this segment in 1997. Sales of midsized MPVs peaked in 2006 and 2007 at nearly 1,5 million sales in Europe, but are now down 60% from that level and falling quickly, with a loss of 42% just in Q4 of 2018. The segment is down one percentage point to just 3,9% of the overall European car market. Like in all MPV segments, brands are replacing their MPVs by crossovers which are more popular. Only one nameplate in the top-10 managed to improve its sales, two others saw single digit declines while the remaining seven players suffered double digit declines on 2017. In this harsh environment, the Renault Scenic takes the annual lead for the first time since the launch of its fourth generation in 2016 and improves its share of the segment thanks to a decline of “just” 15%. 2016 and 2017 leader Volkswagen Touran stabilizes its share but is down into second place, just ahead of the best seller in 2015 and 2014 Citroën C4 Picasso (now baptized C4 Spacetourer). However, as both the Scenic and the C4 Spacetourer are available in 2 versions, a normal 5-seater and a three-row Grand version, we should also combine the Volkswagen Golf Sportsvan with the Touran for an honest comparison. And then VW is still in the lead, despite a 33% loss for the Sportsvan, which is unlikely to be continued for much longer after the regular Golf is renewed later this year.

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_MPV-segment-European-sales-2017
Photo credit: Meinauto.de

Our two luxury brand players complete the top-5, with the BMW 2-series Active/Gran Tourer down 20% as even the plug-in hybrid version can’t make up for lost interest in the model, despite a facelift. The Mercedes-Benz B-Class manages to stay relatively stable at just -6% despite being in its final year of the second generation. It will be replaced in 2019. The Ford C-Max won’t be renewed at all and has started its demise, while the Opel/Vauxhall Zafira nameplate will continue to live on, but no longer as a midsized MPV: the name will be used for Opel/Vauxhall’s version of PSA-Toyota’s passenger van (Traveller/Spacetourer/Proace Verso). The Dacia Lodgy once again outclasses the segment and improves its share, for the fourth year in a row. The budget MPV now holds 5% of the segment and was on schedule to break its annual sales record until the new WLTP standards kicked in and sales in the last four months of 2018 averaged just half of the average in the first eight months. The Kia Carens also improves its share thanks to sales up by 1% but it too suffered from a WLTP setback, with sales declining dramatically in the last four months after peaking in August thanks to pre-registration of thousands of non-compliant but unsold versions, almost all of them in Spain where the Carens was the overall best selling car in the August freak month. The big winner in among midsized MPVs is the BMW i3 with a gain of 15% as 2018 was again a good year for electric cars.

For 2019 we welcome the new B-Class including a 7-seater version and that will probably be all the big product news in this chart. Citroën may kill of the 5-seater C4 Spacetourer as the C5 Aircross crossover can cater to those customers but isn’t available as a 7-seater. The C-Max and Carens are probably in its last year, and so is the Zafira in its current guise as mentioned above. Nor are there any concrete plans for replacements of the Toyota Prius+ and the Lodgy, so expect sales of the segment to continue to slide in the next few years.

Midsized MPV segment 2018 2017 Change
1 Renault (Grand) Scenic 90.680 106.415 -15%
2 Volkswagen Touran 85.471 108.553 -21%
3 Citroën C4 (Grand) Picasso 74.864 99.254 -25%
4 BMW 2-series Active/Gran Tourer 68.367 85.255 -20%
5 Mercedes-Benz B-Class 61.022 64.683 -6%
6 Ford (Grand) C-Max 53.937 68.019 -21%
7 Volkswagen Sportsvan 53.532 80.127 -33%
8 Opel/Vauxhall Zafira 29.514 47.895 -38%
9 Dacia Lodgy 29.338 29.819 -2%
10 BMW i3 24.252 21.010 15%
11 Kia Carens 19.382 19.192 1%
12 Toyota Prius+ 9.760 7.379 32%
13 Toyota Verso 6.633 25.249 -74%
14 Mazda5 5 1 400%
15 Seat Altea 2 3 -33%
Segment total 582.507 741.844 -21%

Click on any model to see its annual sales from 1997-2018 and monthly sales from 2015 to 2018, 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. Good job from Renault. The Scenic is one of few comfortable and practical MPVs with a dynamic design.
    .
    So now there is a statement in the article about certain sales numbers which should be combined? It’s about VW… This is getting funny!
    .
    Mercedes B class stable numbers are probably because of the Dutch government buying thousands of them for the national police, replacing the Touran (and other VW models) after VW was caught cheating. Other companies didn’t have a chance even before the order was going to be assigned.

    1. Losange, you seem to have some resentment for VW, were you affected by them too?

      I think Bart just made a fair point, as BMW, Citroën and Renault joined their 5 and 7 seats versions under the same nameplate while VW hasn’t, even though the Touran and Sportvan are basically the same car.

      Same goes for the premium mid-sized models, with Audi (A4/A5) and BMW (3/4 séries) having 2 models and Mercedes having only the C-klass.

      For disclosure, I own a Dacia which I love and a Renault which I can’t wait to get rid of, and in the past I owned a Skoda and a Peugeot, both of which I loved too. Bart, you should ask your readers what they drive and their opinion

      1. Not at all. It’s just fascinating to see journalists/bloggers presenting VW Group related content in the most positive way compared with content about other companies. I’m not saying CSB, and in this case Bart, are unreliable, of course not, but if you read enough automotive news, you know there is at least some kind of bias when they, especially European media, write about VW Group.
        .
        In this case, Bart emphasises VW actually leading the midsized MPV segment whereas he didn’t say anything at all about the combined success of the Peugeot 3008 and 5008. Instead, he stated “VW Tiguan is the best selling SUV”. Although it’s unintentional, it’s definitely misleading which I don’t like as a loyal reader.

  2. Where Bart at least makes the distinction between quasi similar siblings, the blog Focus2Move messes up dearly.
    In the Global top 10 the Nissan Roque + XTrail should be added. Why? B/c all versions of f.i. the Corolla, Polo, Tiguan are added. Not in Nissan’s case. Not the case with the Duster or Sandero from Dacia + Renault.

    Anyway, more important matters.

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