The midsized car segment in the US outperforms the other car segments in the first quarter of 2020, but sales are still sinking faster than the overall market at -16%. The segment loses 0.6 percentage points of share and now makes up 12.1% of the US car market.
The traditional leader Toyota Camry outperforms the segment and the overall market with a 6% decline, helping it improve its share of the segment to 18.3%. Its nearest rivals are in a fierce battle in which the Nissan Altima has struck a first blow to the Honda Accord. Thanks to the new generation now fully available, the Altima is down just 8% and outsells the Accord by just over 200 units as the latter sees its deliveries drop by 27%. The Ford Fusion loses 11% and stays just ahead of the Chevrolet Malibu, the only nameplate in the top-9 to improve year-over-year. That allows the Malibu to leapfrog the Subaru Outback which is down 22% despite its recent redesign. Its sibling model Legacy is also down 20% in 13th place overall. The two South-Korean models Kia Optima and Hyundai Sonata are both down by double digits, but while the Sonata has already been renewed recently, it falls behind its stablemate which is due for a redesign soon. Biggest loser among mainstream midsized models is the Mazda6 at -35%.
The luxury part of the segment makes up about 20.6% of the overall midsized car class, down from just over 25% in 2019. The Tesla Model 3 holds on to its top spot and still sells over double its nearest rival, but with an estimated 3% decline in deliveries the electric sedan appears to have reached its peak. It will be interesting to see how it holds up when the Model Y starts production. The BMW 3-Series shows a 29% gain compared to the first quarter of last year, when it was in changeover mode to the new generation. As a result, the 3-Series leapfrogs the Lexus ES for second place, while the Mercedes-Benz C-Class loses more than half of its volume and falls behind both. And this is even including the coupe and convertible versions of the C-Class, which are split off into separate models by its rivals. The Infiniti Q50 and Acura TLX are both down harder than the segment but manage to stay just ahead of the Audi A5 which is down by just 3%. That means the A5 outsells its sibling model A4 as the latter loses almost a third of its sales. It’s now just ahead of the Volvo 60-Series and Lincoln MKZ. Biggest loser in the segment are the Jaguar XE at -71% and the BMW 4-Series at -70%, barely managing to stay ahead of the Genesis G70. We welcome the Cadillac CT4 to the ranking, with its first 41 dealer registrations in March.
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