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Archive for January, 1979

Europe 1978: VW Golf threatens Fiat 128 for top spot!

January 30th, 1979 3 comments

Fiat 127 advertising

* See the Top 3 best-selling models by clicking on the title! Many thanks to Flavio *

1978 marks the 6th consecutive year the Fiat 127 dominates the sales charts in Europe thanks to 409,000 units, making it the most popular Fiat ever in Europe, given as far as I know the Uno never managed to rank #1 and the Punto only did so once, in 1997. The only other candidates could be the Fiat 500 and 600 in the sixties, depending on how they fared against the Volkswagen Beetle. However this year the battle was intense: the VW Golf is only a few thousands units behind whole the Renault 5 is also very close at #3.

Full Year 1978 Top 3 models Ranking Table below.

Read more…

Categories: Europe

World 1975-1978: Toyota Corolla in the lead

January 27th, 1979 2 comments

1975 Toyota Corolla

After becoming the world’s best-seller for the first time in 1974, the Toyota Corolla keeps this title for 4 consecutive years up until 1978, while the VW Beetle continues to drop and the VW Golf, launched in 1974, climbs up the ladder. Thanks to Rene for confirming this information, if you have detailed sales figures for the period please do get in touch by commenting on this article!

Originally launched in 1966, the Toyota Corolla nameplate is already at its third generation by 1975, and is encountering exceptional success both in Japan and in export markets, notably in the USA. By 1979, Australian advertising officially promotes the Corolla as “the best-selling car in the world”.

Previous post: World 1974: Toyota Corolla takes command

Next post: World 1979: VW Golf passes Toyota Corolla to claim top spot

Categories: World

Argentina 1976-1978: First years of Renault 12 reign

January 25th, 1979 No comments

Renault 12 Argentina 1971. Picture courtesy of testdelayer.com.ar

* Many thanks to Bruno for making this post possible! *

Launched in 1971, the Renault 12 will have to wait until 1976 to grab the title of most popular vehicle in Argentina. It then holds onto its pole position for 3 consecutive years: in 1977 and 1978, on the way to top the Argentinean ranking for a total of 9 years, the last one being 1988.

Categories: Argentina

USA 1978: Chevrolet Impala/Caprice #1, Ford Fairmont arrives

January 21st, 1979 3 comments

Chevrolet Caprice

* Click on the title for the Top 10 best-selling models – Thanks to Adam for the data! *

Second year of reign for the Chevrolet Impala/Caprice, still at a very high level with 621,140 sales, down just 5%. The Oldsmobile Cutlass drops by 23% and keeps the 2nd place, but just: at 406,993 units, it is only 1,200 sales above the Ford Fairmont, the best newcomer by far in the Top 10, directly to #3 with 405,780 sales. The Fairmont even earns the title of ‘best-selling new car ever introduced’ thanks to this first year sales figure.

The Chevrolet Malibu is up 5 spots and 26% to #4 at 374,124 units, while the Chevrolet Monte Carlo is down 3% to #5 and the Ford LTD down 13% to #6. The other two newbies in the Top 10 are the Oldsmobile 88 at #9 with 273,384 sales and the Chevrolet Camaro at #10 and 260,201 units.

Previous post: USA 1977 Chevrolet Impala/Caprice takes the lead, Ford F-Series now best-selling truck

Next post: USA 1979 Chevrolet places Impala/Caprice and Chevette on podium

Full 1978 Top 10 Ranking Table below.

Read more…

Categories: USA

France 1977-1978: Renault 5 stays on top, Peugeot 104 strong

January 21st, 1979 No comments

Renault 5

No change atop the French models ranking: the Renault 5 confirms its domination: it holds 10.1% of the market in 1977 and 10% in 1978. I don’t have any detailed sales ranking for these years in France so if you do please make sure to get in touch by commenting on this post.

Peugeot 104

Other successful models over the period include the Peugeot 104 at 6.3% in 1977 and 5.9% in 1978, the Citroen 2CV at 5.2% then 4.1% and the Renault 4 at 4.7% and 4.1%.

1977 and 1978 sales figures below.

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Categories: France

Netherlands 1975-1978: Opel Kadett top of the class

January 13th, 1979 No comments

Opel Kadett

* Many thanks to Rene for making this post possible! *

* See the Top 20 best-selling models by clicking on this article’s title or ‘Read more’! *

Throughout the period the Opel Kadett is top of the class, reaching 28,393 sales for a 5.9% market share in 1975 and totalling 22,285 units over the first 6 months of 1978. The Kadett is the only element of stability in a ranking that changed drastically between 1975 and 1978.

Simca 1100

In 1975 the Simca 1100 takes the 2nd spot with 23,561 sales and 4.9%, followed by the VW Golf at 19,576 units and 4.1%, the Toyota Corolla with 17,934 sales and 3.7% and the Citroen 2CV/Dyane at 15,738 units and 3.3%. Notice also the Datsun Cherry at #11, the Mini at #12, the Datsun 120Y at #15 and the local DAF 44/46 at #16 with 8,251 sales and 1.7%.

Peugeot 504

In 1978 the Ford Taunus ranks 2nd with 18,799 sales, ahead of the Opel Ascona at 14,586 units, the VW Golf at 12,654 sales and the Peugeot 504 at 11,019 units. The Citroen GS lodges a brilliant 6th place with 9,859 sales while the Mazda 323 is the best-selling Japanese model at #7 and 9,693 units.

Full Year 1975 Top 20 and 6 months 1978 Top 10 Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: Netherlands

Italy 1977-1978: Fiat 127 still on top, Fiat Ritmo lands

January 9th, 1979 4 comments

Fiat 127 Sport Italy 1978Fiat 127 Sport

* See the Top 20 brands and most produced models by clicking on the title! *

Not much official models sales data available for this period in Italy, only that the Fiat 127 continues to lead the sales charts thanks to 237,600 sales, ahead of the Fiat 126 at 174,000 and the Fiat 128 at 93,000. However thanks to the UNRAE team, brands sales and models production data is available.

Alfa Romeo Alfasud L Italy 1977Alfa Romeo Alfasud

Notice the Fiat 131 up to #2 most produced in 1978 with 204,962 units, the Fiat Ritmo landing directly at #5 with 108,411 units and the Alfa Romeo Alfasud above 100,000 units that same year. Brand-wise, thanks to the success of the Renault 5, Renault stays very strong at 8% share in 1976, 1977 and 1978, peaking at 97,004 sales in 1978 which was at the time the highest annual volume ever for any foreign brand in Italy.

Previous post: Italy 1976: Renault 5 breaks into Top 5

Next post: Italy 1979: Fiat 127 and 126 dominate

Full Year 1977 and 1978 Top 20 brands and most produced models below.

Italy 1977 – most produced models:

Pos Model Production % 1976
1 Fiat 127 333,795 23.2% 1
2 Fiat 128 237,491 16.5% 2
3 Fiat 126 205,152 14.2% 4
4 Fiat 131 166,871 11.6% 3
5 Alfa Romeo Alfasud 98,293 6.8% 5
6 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 73,573 5.1% 7
7 Fiat 132 72,678 5.0% 9
8 Autobianchi A112 69,974 4.9% 6
9 Lancia Beta 56,463 3.9% 8
10 Innocenti Mini 38,120 2.6% n/a
11 Fiat X1/9 18,450 1.3% 11
12 Fiat 124 14,008 1.0% 12
13 Alfa Romeo Giulia 11,688 0.8% 10
14 Lancia Coupe 8,469 0.6% n/a
15 Alfa Romeo Giulietta 7,390 0.5% n/a
16 Alfa Romeo 1300 7,281 0.5% n/a
17 Fiat 900 6,243 0.4% 18
18 Lancia Gamma 4,012 0.3% 19
19 Alfa Romeo 2000 3,566 0.2% 15
20 Autobianchi Bianchina 2,730 0.2% 13

Italy 1977 – brands:

Pos Brand Sales % 1976
1 Fiat 594,429 48.8% 1
2 Renault 97,004 8.0% 2
3 Alfa Romeo 80,304 6.6% 3
4 Ford 70,591 5.8% 8
5 Citroen 66,014 5.4% 5
6 Autobianchi 54,635 4.5% 6
7 Simca 52,714 4.3% 4
8 Opel 40,379 3.3% 7
9 VW 38,251 3.1% 9
10 Lancia 25,601 2.1% 10
11 Peugeot 24,921 2.0% 11
12 Nuova Innocenti 20,824 1.7% 12
13 BMW 15,761 1.3% 13
14 Mercedes 11,869 1.0% 14
15 Volvo 3,273 0.3% 16
16 Audi 3,197 0.3% 15
17 Austin 2,887 0.2% n/a
18 Skoda 2,578 0.2% 17
19 Zaz 2,035 0.2% n/a
20 Vauxhall-Bedford 1,875 0.2% 20

Italy 1978 – most produced models:

Pos Model Production % 1977
1 Fiat 127 361,286 23.9% 1
2 Fiat 131 204,962 13.6% 4
3 Fiat 126 167,535 11.1% 3
4 Fiat 128 135,012 8.9% 2
5 Fiat Ritmo 108,411 7.2%  -
6 Alfa Romeo Alfasud 105,953 7.0% 5
7 Fiat 132 93,389 6.2% 7
8 Autobianchi A112 89,436 5.9% 8
9 Alfa Romeo Giulietta 58,066 3.8% 15
10 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 51,504 3.4% 6
11 Lancia Beta 42,800 2.8% 9
12 Innocenti Mini 40,719 2.7% 10
13 Fiat X1/9 19,240 1.3% 11
14 Fiat 124 16,079 1.1% 12
15 Lancia Gamma 6,399 0.4% 18
16 Fiat 900 4,448 0.3% 17
17 Lancia Coupe 3,263 0.2% 14
18 Fiat Campagnola 2,844 0.2% 21

Italy 1978 brands:

Pos Brand Sales % 1977
1 Fiat 549,914 46.0% 1
2 Renault 96,043 8.0% 2
3 Alfa Romeo 87,037 7.3% 3
4 Citroen 65,014 5.4% 5
5 Ford 64,064 5.4% 4
6 Autobianchi 61,767 5.2% 6
7 Opel 48,983 4.1% 8
8 Simca 47,462 4.0% 7
9 VW 41,613 3.5% 9
10 Nuova Innocenti 27,984 2.3% 12
11 Peugeot 24,010 2.0% 11
12 Lancia 22,000 1.8% 10
13 BMW 17,930 1.5% 13
14 Mercedes 9,951 0.8% 14
15 Volvo 4,049 0.3% 15
16 Austin 3,101 0.3% 17
17 Seat 3,010 0.3% 21
18 Audi 3,005 0.3% 16
19 Skoda 2,744 0.2% 18
20 Vauxhall-Bedford 2,430 0.2% 20

Source: ANFIA, many thanks to the UNRAE team for opening up your archives!

Categories: Italy

Norway 1977-1978: Volvo 240 and Ford Granada most popular

January 3rd, 1979 No comments

Volvo 244

* See the Top 10 best-selling models by clicking on the title! Many thanks to Rene *

Only two years after passing the 100,000 annual registrations milestone, Norwegian car sales reach 145,247 units in 1977, 14% better than in 1976. However 1978 sees the worst sales setback since World War II: down 46% to 77,821 units, bringing the market back to 1970 levels. In this context the Volvo 240 is undisturbed and continues to dominate the models ranking with 10,226 sales and 7% share in ’77 then 6,927 and 8.9% in ’78.

Ford Granada

There is a newcomer on the podium over the period: the Ford Granada establishes itself as a solid competitor for the Volvo 240, selling 8,853 units for a 6.1% market share in ’77 then 6,096 and 7.8% in ’78. The Ford Taunus holds a strong third position both years, reaching 5.7% share in ’77 and 5.4% in ’78.

Mazda 323

The Saab 99 ranks at a brilliant 4th place in 1977, the highest position ever reached by a Saab model in Norway, while the Toyota Corolla weakens over the period: down to #5 in ’77 and outside the Top 10 in ’78. It is replaced at the helm of Japanese models by the Mazda 323, breaking into the Norwegian Top 10 for the first time in 1978 at #8 with 2,165 sales and 2.8%.

Notice the VW Polo leading the brand’s sales at #10 in ’77 but outside the Top 10 the following year, making 1978 the first year since the creation of the Volkswagen brand ever that no model ranks within the Norwegian Top 10.

Previous post: Norway 1975-1976: Volvo 240 #1, Toyota Corolla on podium!

Next post: Norway 1980-1989: VW Golf and Ford Sierra dominate

Full Year 1977 and 1978 Top 10 Ranking Tables below.

Read more…

Categories: Norway

Sweden 1978: Volvo 240, Saab 99 and Volvo 340 on top

January 1st, 1979 No comments

Volvo 245

* See ‘Read more’ for the Top 20 best-selling models!  Many thanks to Torbjörn for the data *

In 1978 just over 200,000 new cars were purchased in Sweden (200,874 exactly). The Volvo 240 leads the models ranking by a large margin with 37,564 sales for a massive 18.7% market share. The Saab 99 is in 2nd place at 18,613 units and 9.3%, followed by the Volvo 340 with 9,873 sales and 4.9%.

Saab 99

The VW Golf is the best-selling foreign model at #4 and 4.2%, ahead of the Ford Granada (3.8%) and Opel Rekord (3.4%). The Saab 95/96 ranks 9th with 2.8% of the Swedish market. Notice the arrival of the Saab 900 at #16 with 3,264 sales.

Full Year 1978 Top 20 Ranking Table below.

Read more…

Categories: Sweden