World September 2013 Roundup: Tesla S sets Norway on fire
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Yes it’s that time of the month when we go through the highlights of the last one before diving into the new one (month, that is). First onto a bit of overview of the main markets worldwide: China jumps further away from the rest of the other markets, up a whopping 21% this month while the USA is shockingly down 4% year-on-year, Japan up a fantastic 12%, Brazil reassuringly back up 6%, Germany down 1% and India down 3%. For its part Europe as a whole is up 6%: is this the end of hell for the continent? The next few months will tell.
Let’s get straight into it: the biggest news of the month (of the year?) happened in Norway: the Model S did what no electric car ever managed before in the world: finish a month in pole position in any country. Selling an incredible 616 units for a 5.1% market share vs. 561 and 4.6% for the VW Golf, the Model S is the first model to beat the VW Golf in a Norwegian monthly ranking so far in 2013 and only the 5th car to have done so in the last 4 years after the Volvo V70, VW Passat, Toyota Avensis and Ford Focus… With notoriety comes criticism and Tesla has had to endure the repercussions of a couple of its models setting fire after an accident in the last month.
Secondly, let’s highlight the stellar month of BMW in the UK: the 1 Series smashes its monthly volume record at 10,084 sales and 2.5% share, up 44% on its previous best of 7,001 reached last March. It ranks 6th for the 2nd month running and the third time ever, its best ranking in the UK. It is the strongest volume hit by a BMW since the 10,317 the 3 Series sold back in March 2008. BMW also delivers an outstanding month in Portugal, ranking #2 brand with 9.1% share, with Mercedes #4 at 8.3% and both manufacturers ahead of Volkswagen at #5 and 6.8%! The 3 Series is #2 and the 1 Series #6 there this month.
I have elected the Skoda Octavia to be the #3 worldwide highlight in September, simply because it did fantastically well in Germany, reaching a record 5th place, it hit its highest share in 18 months at home in the Czech Republic at 14.7% and also led the overall market in Poland and Finland. If we focus a little bit more on the Octavia’s German performance, let’s just remember that for over 5 years, the nameplate’s best monthly ranking in Germany was #12 (hit in February 2007), before the Octavia broke into the German Top 10 for the first time exactly one year ago in September 2012 at #9 and reached that position again last March. So its entrance inside the German Top 5 is indeed a huge achievement.
The number 4 worldwide highlight this month happened in India, where Hyundai has another winner with the Grand i10. It is already up to 24 spots on August to #6 best-seller this month thanks to 8,411 sales and 4.1% share for only its second appearance in the Indian ranking! The Grand i10 is manufactured in Chennai and is in fact a new generation i10 with a stretched wheelbase tailored specifically to Indian tastes. Another proof that Hyundai’s strategy of ‘acting like a local’ in most markets it operates in is paying off.
Fifth but not least, the Ford Escosport confirms its South American success in other parts of the world, gaining one further spot in India to #9, is up to #13 in South Africa for only its 2nd month in market.
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Here is the full last 6 months’ worth of World roundups:
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