US car sales analysis 2018 Q2 – Premium Full-size SUV segment

Sales of Lincoln Navigator surge even further, as segment slides back into the red

Sales in the US Premium Full-size SUV segment fell by 3.1% to 60,612 in the first half of 2018, as the segment’s rate of decline accelerated to 4.5% in the second quarter of the year. With the new Lincoln Navigator being the only new model still ramping up sales, and only the new Mercedes-Benz G-Class set to go on sale before the end of the year, the segment is likely to shrink further in 2018.


  • Infiniti QX80 could not maintain the good growth that drove it to first place in the standings in Q1’18, seeing its sales fall by 27% in the second quarter and falling down to fifth in the overall rankings
  • Just as it was denied the top spot by the QX80 in Q1’18, the fast-declining Mercedes-Benz GLS was unable to hold onto the segment lead in Q2’18, this time finishing behind the aging Cadillac Escalade (whose sales combined with that of the long-wheelbase Cadillac Escalade ESV make it the undisputed segment leader)

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

  • The new Lincoln Navigator continued its surge, more than doubling sales in the second quarter, enough for the model to advance ahead of the Infiniti QX80 in the standings, and ending up just behind the facelifted Range Rover
  • While sales of the Lexus LX bounced back in the second quarter, those of the outgoing Mercedes-Benz G-Class fell by more than 25%
  • After seeing its sales by 22% in Q1’18 Bentley Bentayga was back in the black, with the Q2’18
  • returned to recovered well to see its sales rise by 22%

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