US sales analysis 2018 Q2 – Mid-sized segment

New Camry and Accord sales fall, while revised Mazda6 and Honda Clarity perform well at the bottom of the standings 

Sales in the US Mid-sized segment fell by 12.4% to 872,876 in the first half of 2018, with the rate of decline being very close to 12% in both quarters in 2018 so far. Such a performance will be disappointing to those who thought that new, more assertive models such as Toyota Camry and Honda Accord could breathe life into the declining segment. Instead, both models saw their sales fall in the second quarter of 2018, suggesting that not even the imminent arrival of the new Nissan Altima and Subaru Outback will be enough to lift the segment’s fortunes in 2018.


  • Toyota Camry and Honda Accord, the two “hot” new models in the segment both lost sales in the second quarter of 2018 – for the Toyota it was a downturn after a promising performance in Q4’17 and Q1’18, while for the Honda it was a continuation of the disappointing performance of the new model, which has regularly recorded double-digit sales decline compared to the previous generation model
  • In fact, the performance of the new Accord has been comparable to that of the outgoing Nissan Altima, although only time will tell whether the incoming new model will manage to record significantly higher sales volumes
  • By comparison, the moderate single-digit growth that the soon-to-be-replaced Subaru Outback has been recording so far this year makes it by far the best performing model in the segment, allowing it to stay comfortably ahead of the Ford Fusion, which it overtook in the standings in Q1’18

Note: clicking on the model name opens the sales data page for that model; clicking year in the legend turns the display for that year on/off

  • After a relatively good start to the year, when the facelifted version recorded a moderate 2% sales decline, Chevrolet Malibu recorded a much worse 15% sales decline in the second quarter of the year
  • By comparison, sales of the perennial losers, Hyundai SonataKia Optima and VW Passat came out of free-fall, though all three still saw their sales decline by low double-digits in Q2’18
  • Towards the bottom of the standings were a few bright spots in the segment: sales of the revised Mazda6 were up 44% in the second quarter of the year, enough to make up for the losses the model sustained in the first quarter, while those of the new Honda Clarity (hybrid, battery and fuel cell, combined) were high enough to put the model ahead of the steady-if-unspectacular sales of the new Buick Regal

Note: clicking on the model names in legend turns the display for that model on/off; data is displayed from 1990 onwards, but starts in 1973 – access previous years using slider on bottom