US car sales analysis 2020-Q1 – Minicars

In an overall US car market down 13% in the first quarter of 2020, the minicar segment holds up surprisingly well with a 6% drop in deliveries. However, this is not a homogenous performance across the segment, as the Chevrolet Spark showed a very strong 46% growth rate to reach its highest Q1 volume since 2014, when its previous generation was still fresh.

The other three players in this segment see their sales decline at more than double the overall market decline, which leads to a whopping 54% share of the segment for the Spark, selling more than all of its rivals combined. The Mitsubishi Mirage is down by slightly more than a quarter, the Mini Cooper is down by nearly 40% and the Fiat 500 loses almost 60% of its already low sales volume, meaning only 327 units of the Italian hatchback were sold in Q1. And with Q2 sales expected to take a big hit from the shelter in place orders due to the COVID-19 virus and subsequent closure of car sales activity in many states, as well as an even lower oil price leading to cheaper fuel, minicars in the US are facing an even more uphill battle than ever before.

US minicar sales 2020-Q1

Minicar segment 2020 2019 Change Share
1 Chevrolet Spark 9.352 6.423 46% 54,0%
2 Mitsubishi Mirage 4.646 6.242 -26% 26,8%
3 Mini Cooper 2.980 4.870 -39% 17,2%
4 Fiat 500 327 778 -58% 1,9%
Segment total 17.305 18.313 -6%

Source: Manufacturers.