US car sales analysis 2018 Q1 – Small Sports segment

Segment sales collapse by over 40%, will the next Hyundai Veloster be able to lift it?

Sales in the US Small Sports segment collapsed by 40.2% to 8,724 in the first quarter of 2018, by far the largest decline from among all segments. What’s more, this follows the 36.9% sales decline the segment experienced in 2017 – could it be the advent of trendy crossovers is pulling all the money away from this segment? It will be interesting how much of a take-up the new Hyundai Veloster will have – given its prominent position, its success may singlehandedly arrest the segment’s decline.


  • The scale of the segments’ sales collapse is such, that the 40% plus sales declines of the segment-leading Hyundai Veloster and Mazda MX-5 Miata are merely slightly worse than average; at least the Veloster is about to be replaced – Mazda should be much more worried about the sales decline of the still-fresh MX-5
  • The recently-facelifted Toyota 86 (née Scion FR-S) and Buick Cascada, sitting in third and fourth place, respectively, both lost a little over 30% of sales

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

  • By the standards of the segment the 12% decline in the sales of the recently-facelifted Subaru BRZ looks like a minor success, as does the 24% decline in sales of the Fiat 124 Spider
  • Q1’18 marked the last sales of the failed slow and un-sporty hybrid Honda CR-Z

Note: clicking on the model names in legend turns the display for that model on/off; data is displayed from 1990 onwards, but starts earlier – access previous years using slider on bottom