The midsized SUV segment in the United States continues to outperform the overall car market with sales up 37% in the first half of 2021. A total of just over 1.6 million units were sold so far this year, giving these family haulers a share of 19.4% of total car sales in the US, up from 18.2% in the first half of 2020 and up from 17.3% in all of 2020. In the top-20 best sellers, only one nameplate is down on last year while all others are gaining by double digits.
The Ford Explorer loses its segment leadership due to chip shortages which have affected Ford more than other brands. The Explorer drops from first place after Q1 to third place after Q2, leapfrogged by the Toyota Highlander and the Jeep Wrangler. The Highlander is the best performer in the top-15 with sales up 83%. The Jeep Grand Cherokee is due for a redesign including the long awaited first-ever three row version, but sales are still up 12% on lst year. The Chevrolet Traverse and Honda Pilot as well as the Hyundai Santa Fe outperform the segment, but the Toyota 4Runner is falling behind with sales up just 22%. The Kia Sorento jumps 5 places from #15 in Q1 to a top-10 place after the first half, including its larger sibling Kia Telluride which is still one of the best performing models year-over-year. The Volkswagen Atlas keeps gaining market share as well and jumps past the Hyundai Palisade and Ford Edge, the latter of which is the only loser in the top-20 at -22%, also due to chip shortages.
The Dodge Durango keeps going strong despite its advanced age, but the Toyota Venza is closing in quickly, already in an overall 18th place. We see 10% declines for both the Subaru Ascent and Nissan Murano, allowing the Honda Passport, Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport and Buick Enclave to close in. The Nissan Pathfinder is one of the biggest losers of the class at -50% as the new generation is just arriving in showrooms. Newcomer Ford Bronco registers its first 801 units and will undoubtedly storm the charts as soon as deliveries start in earnest.
The luxury part of the segment makes up 20% of total midsized crossover sales, up from 18.3% in the first half of 2020, with sales improving 50% in the first six months of 2021. The Lexus RX remains ultra dominant, even claiming an overall #9 spot. And with sales up 54%, its gains share of the class. Thanks to sales more than doubling, the Acura MDX maintains the #2 spot among luxury models which it reclaimed in Q1, followed by the Mercedes-Benz GLE and BMW X5. The Volvo XC90 follows at a distance, ahead of the Audi Q7 and Lexus GX. The Cadillac XT6 leapfrogs its main rival Lincoln Aviator, while the Genesis GV80 outsells the Range Rover Sport in Q2. The Audi Q8 moves ahead of the and Rover Defender and Tesla Model X, which is down an estimated 31%. Due to the imminent model changeover, the Infiniti QX60 is down 65% and the biggest loser of the class. The Land Rover Discovery is affected by the success of the Defender.
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