The midsized car segment in the US is not as badly in dire straits as in Europe (-19%), but a 7% decline is still more than the overall car market and decreases its share of the market from 13% to 12.3%. However, when looking at just the sedan (non-SUV) market, the midsized segment actually outperforms its peers and improves its share from 42.2% to 44.3%. The Toyota Camry gains share thanks to a 2% loss in 2019, and thanks to the Honda Accord’s 8% decline, the Camry now has an almost 70,000 sales advantage over its nearest rival. The Nissan Altima sees stable sales in 2019 thanks to the new generation, and the same reason helps the Subaru Outback to a 1% gain, which adds one percentage point of share to both nameplates. When combining sales of the Outback and its sedan cousin Legacy, Subaru holds the #3 spot in this segment. Very impressive for what used to be a niche brand. The Ford Fusion is down just 4% and therefore outperforms the segment. Considering this still translates to 166,000 sales which make it Ford’s fourth best selling model in the US, it still baffles me that the brand is walking away from this segment in a few years’ time. The Chevrolet Malibu loses share with a 9% decline but it too remains above 130,000 sales, while the Kia Optima and Hyundai Sonata both drop below that mark. Especially the Sonata is taking a big hit with a 17% decline, something its strikingly designed new generation should make up for in 2020. The Tesla Model 3 gains one position to take 6th place and is the biggest winner in the top-15 with its 14% gain.
Biggest loser in the top-20 is the permanently underperforming Mazda6, with a mere 21,500 sales. At least it manages to move past the Volkswagen Passat, which drops below 1% share of the segment and is quickly becoming irrelevant. The arrival of the VW Arteon can’t exactly be blamed for the Passat’s downfall, as the coupe-like sedan finds fewer than 2,500 US buyers. The Honda Clarity loses almost half of its sales, but manages to still outsell the Buick Regal, down 27% as it is also destined for the chopping block.
In the luxury part of the segment, which makes up about 25.2% of the overall midsized car class, the Model 3 has obliterated the competition, as 3 out of 10 luxury midsized sedans sold in the US are Tesla’s EV. The BMW 3-Series together with the 4-Series is down 13% to hold on to its overall segment top-10 position, while the Lexus ES it the only other major luxury sedan to gain sales in 2019, allowing it to pass the Audi A4/A5 and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, both down by about 18%. The biggest loser among luxury players is the Infiniti Q50/Q60 duo at -29%, but they still manage to outsell the Acura TLX. Thanks to the new generation, sales of the Volvo 60-Series surge 70% and the Swedish brand leapfrogs the Lexus IS/RC and the Lincoln MKZ. The Genesis G70 scores fewer than 12,000 sales in its first full year of sales, just behind its sibling model Kia Stinger, as apparantly there’s still a glass ceiling for Korean luxury sedans. The Alfa Romeo Giulia and Jaguar XE both lose about a quarter of their already abysmal sales and especially the latter has lost relevance in the US.
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