US car sales analysis 2018- Small Pickup segment

Segment grows by more 15% even before Ford Ranger and Jeep Gladiator swell sales in 2019

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Sales in the US Small Pickup segment rose by 15.9% to 524,231 in 2018, the first time sales have climbed over half a million vehicles in almost two decades, and not far off the record the segment set in 1999, when 543,438 were sold. What’s more, with the Ford Ranger and the long-awaited Jeep Gladiator pickup finally arriving in the coming months, and Nissan finally suggesting it will replace the geriatric Frontier in the coming year, all signs are pointing to the segment establishing a new sales record in the coming year or two.

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 recently-revised Toyota Tacoma remained the undisputed segment leader, with 24% growth allowing it to open up the lead to the second-placed Chevrolet Colorado, which saw its sales grow by a not-too-shabby 19% in 2018
  • Nissan Frontier easily held onto third spot, and even saw its sales go up a tidy 7%, despite quickly approaching the age when it will start attracting interest from archeologists (sorry, could not help myself)
  • GMC Canyon once again saw its sales grow more slowly than for Chevrolet Colorado, which meant that for the first time in a while it was outsold by its twin 1-to-4
  • Still, the wooden spoon in the segment has to go to Honda Ridgeline, which saw sales decline in only the second full year in the market – this means that the second generation model’s sales peak in 2017 (under 35,000) is only 2/3rds of what the first generation managed (over 50,000 in 2006), suggesting that if anything Honda went the wrong way by softening the look and image of the second-generation model

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