Sales of large sedans in the US have been declining for 6 years now and volume is down to less than half the volume of 2013. Large sedans now comprise just 2.4% of total new car sales in the United States. King of the large car hill is the Dodge Charger , the only single model in the segment that has been able to buck this trend and improve its sales in 2019, and doing so by double digits while all the other models lost volume by double digits. As a result of its 21% gain, the Charger now holds a 38.9% share of the mainstream large car segment (23.2% including luxury large sedans), up from 26.7% in 2018. At 96.935 deliveries, 2019 is the Charger’s second best sales year since 2009, just 1,400 sales below 2013. Nearest mainstream rivals are the Chevrolet Impala and Nissan Maxima, down by 20% and 17% respectively, and both combined sell about 80,000 units, still far off the Charger’s tally. For both models, this is their lowest volume year since their nameplates were launched.
Surprisingly, the Charger’s platform sibling Chrysler 300 is less fortunate, being the biggest loser in the top-5 with a 37% decline in sales to drop below 30,000 deliveries, which also makes this the 300’s slowest year since its launch in 2003. The Toyota Avalon is down 17% to just 27,700 sales, its lowest volume since 2009 and barely more than Avalon sales in China in just the fourth quarter. The Ford Taurus has already been killed off with sales down by almost two thirds to just 13,350 sales, of which 3,400 were fleet deliveries of the Police Interceptor version. The Kia Cadenza seems to be cannibalized by the Stinger sports sedan and has lost its relevance in the US market.
In the luxury part of the segment, which makes up about 40.3% of the overall large car class, we see the Mercedes-Benz E-Class taking the overall #3 spot with the BMW 5-Series not far behind, also ahead of the Nissan Maxima and both pass the Chrysler 300. The Audi A6 is the big winner of the overall segment with a 69% growth thanks to the new generation, allowing it to leapfrog the Tesla Model S which is down by 45% now that the smaller and more affordable Model 3 has arrived. The Germans now dominate the top-3 among luxury brands again, as other American nameplates are struggling as well with the Cadillac XTS and Buick LaCrosse planned for end of production in 2020 and the Cadillac CTS and Lincoln Continental both down by double digits to below 7,000 annual sales. That allows the Genesis G80 to move ahead of the latter two models despite a 7% drop in deliveries.
The Audi A7 is boosted by the new generation with sales up 29% to still its third-slowest year. The Volvo 90-Series takes a big hit with sales down 58% to just over 4,000 units, as the Swedish brand is much stronger in crossovers and SUVs than with its sedans and station wagons. The Jaguar XF has officially flopped with the second generation, having been outsold even by the larger and much older XJ in seven of the last nine months and even almost for the entire year. The BMW 6-Series GT hatchback is not a success in the US (surprise, surprise!), but still outsells the Acura RLX.
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