Archive

Archive for the ‘Featured Category’ Category

STRATEGY: What future for new car sales in Iran?

July 31st, 2015 9 comments

Shiraz Mosque Iran. Picture courtesy 500px.comNasir Al-Mulk mosque in Shiraz, Iran

With Iran agreeing to curb its nuclear program in return for the end of economic sanctions, carmakers are scrambling to the starting blocks in order to best benefit from the opening of a high-potential market to competition. If you are a regular BSCB reader, you will know that the best-selling cars in Iran are for the most part decades-old designs assembled locally as the lack of true competition in the market has stifled innovation. The domestic best-sellers revolve around just a handful of ageing staples: the Saipa Pride – in essence a 1986 Kia Pride, the Peugeot 405/Pars – a mere facelift of the original Peugeot 405 launched in 1987, the Peugeot 206, Iran Khodro Samand and the new leader: the Saipa Tiba.

Tehran Iran. Picture courtesy sibf.orgTehran, Iran

We are therefore potentially on the cusp of a complete reshuffle of the Iranian car market. Freer trade with foreign countries will undoubtedly boost imports and manufacturers will make plans to build new factories in order to bypass import taxes and sell cars at more competitive prices. The prospects are looking very bright indeed for Iran. But just how much potential does the Iranian new car market hold? Car registrations ipeaked at 1.6 million in 2011 before collapsing as economic sanctions were strengthened. Domestic production also fell, by almost 1 million vehicles over the next two years – from 1.65 million in 2011 to 744.000 in 2013 – destroying more than 100,000 jobs. Since, as sanctions were partially relaxed in 2013, the market has recovered to a projected 1.2 million sales for 2015 according to IHS Automotive.

Iran Auto Production. Picture courtesy WikipediaIranian auto production (click to enlarge)

Iran’s population stands at 78.5 million – similar to Turkey or Germany – and a few indicators point to great pent-up demand in the market. The median age of vehicles on the road in Iran is over 20 years, and 55% of the population is under 30, but most haven’t had the opportunity to drive yet. With 200 vehicles per 1.000 inhabitants in 2011, Iran is, granted, well above China (113), at the same level as Thailand (206), but below other countries in the region such as Turkey (233), Saudi Arabia (336), Israel (358) or Lebanon (434). The potential is there, not just for car renewal but for new cars on the road as well. The end of the sanctions will see the market shoot up to 1.6 million sales in 2016, and we at BSCB see Iran evolve at 2 million annual registrations before the end of the decade, roughly equivalent in size to a market like France. Speaking of which, for once French manufacturers are the best placed to reap the benefit of a revival of the Iranian car market. What are the forces in place and who is most likely to win the race to Iranian market share?

Peugeot Pars Iran 2015The Peugeot 405/Pars is currently the brand’s best-seller in Iran.

Peugeot

Within hours of the announcement of the nuclear deal between Iran and Western powers, PSA Peugeot-Citroen had outlined its plan for new Iranian production to reclaim and defend the leading market position it held before sanctions were tightened four years ago – and kept unofficially since. In 2012 when General Motors took a 7% stake in PSA, Peugeot was forced to stop supplying CKD kits (complete knockdown) to Iranian factories for the Peugeot 405, Pars, 206 and 207. Overall, European and U.S. carmakers had to stop doing business in Iran during that time as economic sanctions were extended to the auto industry. However as we described in a recent Iran study (see Iran April 2015: Peugeot more than doubles production year-on-year), Peugeot’s original partner Iran Khodro managed to shift their spare parts supply to local companies and in effect sustained the production and sale of Peugeot models in Iran.

Peugeot 301 Iran 2015. Picture courtesy of Beirutnightlife.comPeugeot is planning to start producing the 301 in Iran shortly.

This way, Peugeot’s share of the Iranian market has remained extremely strong: just under 40% which is actually above its pre-2012 sanctions level. Peugeot insists the 350.000 cars produced in Iran in 2014 and sold mainly domestically are not booked in their accounts. Now, given the PSA-GM alliance has been dissolved and economic sanctions against Iran are in the process of being removed, Peugeot announced on 1 March 2015 it agreed to resume (“official”) local production of cars with Iran Khodro. Then last week PSA declared its intention to invest in full Iranian production of new models using its latest architectures and engines, for domestic sales first, then adding exports towards the near region later. Peugeot’s intentions are to use a different business model from before the sanctions: the group now wants 50:50 joint ventures and is willing to invest in new factories and hand over technology to partners in return for a greater share of the upside, says Automotive News.

This means PSA is hitting the ground running in Iran, controlling close to half of the market and benefitting from decades of presence in the country, the undeniable familiarity of the brand and sky-high consumer trust that other manufacturers will have a hard time eroding – whether French foreign minister Laurent Fabius likes it or not (see further down the Renault section). The only missing link has been the outdated technologies still on sale in Iran up until now. With plans to produce locally the 208 and 301 – which seems to have been engineered with Iran in mind, this has the potential to change fast. According to Automotive News, in the longer term Peugeot is even looking to turn Iran into a production base, exporting cars to the rest of the Middle East and Africa. Currently, Iran Khodro supplies Peugeot vehicles to Azerbaijan, Iraq, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Syria and Afghanistan, according to a report by Iranian news network Press TV.

Saipa Tiba Iran June 2015. Picture courtesy diariomotor.comThe Saipa Tiba is Iran’s new best-seller.

Domestic manufacturers

Iranian carmakers Saipa and Iran Khodro are at a crossroads in 2015. The opening of their domestic market to the competition they dread but that consumers have been aching for could either kill them or make them stronger. Their respective limited ranges are based on dated Peugeot platforms, and much of their success will be dependent on how they manage to keep these existing ties with Peugeot, putting the French carmaker in an even stronger position that we argued above. With PSA-Peugeot Citroen engaged in long-term links with both Saipa and Iran Khodro, the latter two will need to work very hard to ensure at least a partial transfer of technology to remain competitive.

Most produced cars in Iran – past 3 years (Persian year 1393 = April 2014 to March 2015):

Pos Model 1393 /92 1392 /91 1391
1 Saipa Pride 250,088 29% 194,414 -30% 276,992
2 Peugeot Pars 147,742 47% 100,419 40% 71,506
3 Peugeot 405 117,403 72% 68,123 -35% 104,314
4 Peugeot 206 104,150 160% 40,102 44% 27,819
5 Iran Khodro Samand 100,643 53% 65,775 -40% 110,479
6 Saipa Tiba 85,359 112% 40,195 83% 21,991
7 Iran Khodro Runna 25,852 -4% 27,022 71% 15,798
8 Renault Tondar 90 25,852 26% 20,454 -74% 77,416

Up until last May, the best-selling model in Iran was the Saipa Pride, a 1986 Kia Pride sedan with only slight improvements added over the past three decades. Saipa currently holds 35% of its domestic car market with just two nameplates (the Pride and Tiba) while Iran Khodro has 14% with three (Samand, Runna and Dena). However Iran Khodro is a lot stronger in the pickup segment, where it may have played its best card yet with the launch a few months back of the Peugeot 405-based Arisun. The Arisun replaces the antediluvian Bardo, a pickup variant of the 1967 Iran Khodro Paykan which itself stayed in production in Iran for almost four decades, up until 2005.

Iran Khodro Arisun. Picture courtesy clipo.irIran Khodro Arisun & Bardo. Picture courtesy oglobo.globo.comThe Peugeot 405-based IKCO Arisun finally replaces the 1967 Bardo…

A no-frills and relatively moderm 2WD pickup reminiscent of the Dacia Logan pickup still on sale in South Africa as the Nissan NP200 may be just what Iranian small businesses need and it will be interesting to see whether any other manufacturer takes the hint once the Arisun floods Iranian roads. The attachment and fondness of the Iranian population for their beloved domestic brands will be what Saipa and Iran Khodro will rely upon, and this will give them perhaps a five to seven year-respite, but if drastic improvements to their limited range are not implemented by then, look to Russia and the dwindling down market share of domestic behemoth Lada as an indication of what awaits Iranian carmakers at home.

Hyundai Santa Fe Iran 2015. Picture courtesy of motortrend.comThe Hyundai Santa Fe is the best-selling import into Iran so far in 2015.

Hyundai – Kia

Exclusive imports data published yesterday on BSCB indicate that the two Korean carmakers account for a whopping 59% of all new vehicle imports in the country over the First Quarter of 2015. The largest import player by far is Hyundai at 43% and Kia follows at 16%. Kia for its part has been assembling the Cerato locally albeit at just a couple of thousands of units annually. The Middle-Eastern region has no secrets for Hyundai, often teasing Toyota for overall domination in markets such as Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates. In Lebanon, Kia (#1) and Hyundai (#3) sandwich Toyota (#2) whereas in Syria, Hyundai (52.5%) and Kia (45.4%) obliterate the market, as it is also the case in Jordan where Hyundai leads at 39.9% share above Kia at 21.5%. Even better news: Iranian consumers are fond of larger, more profitable models such as the Santa Fe (#1 import), Elantra (#2), ix35 (#3) and Kia Sportage (#4) whereas the Picanto and i10 are less popular so far. Given their success in an extremely unfavourable context, Hyundai and Kia are welcomed in Iran with arms wide open, and we should expect some large scale announcement such as the construction of an assembly plant rather soon. That, or a further strengthening of business ties between Iran and the Gulf Cooperation Council where Hyundais Kias are partucularly successful as well.

Toyota Corolla IranIranian Toyota Corolla advertisement

Toyota

Toyota is already a volume importer in Iran, ranking third brand below the two Korean manufacturers mentioned above with 4.409 units and 13.4% share over the First Quarter of 2015. For now, the new generation Corolla and the RAV4 SUV are the best-sellers. Toyota has a stranglehold on the Middle-eastern car market thanks to its strength in the SUV segment and a tried-and-tested, reliable and reasonably-priced offering. Although Iran does not have as strong a pickup culture as most neighbouring countries, the Hilux seems like a no brainer here. There is no reason why the Japanese manufacturer should find it difficult to replicate in Iran the success that has helped the group hold the #1 spot in the Gulf Cooperation Council for the best part of the last two decades. The distribution network it has carefully built in Saudi Arabia and the GCC region is a perfect model to replicate in Iran. Granted, it will need to be implemented from the ground up, as opposed to companies already having a footprint in Iran such as Peugeot or the two main domestic manufacturers. But the considerable flow of Toyota models into the ports of the region is a very solid starting point for Iranian success. Like Hyundai, Toyota will need to work the very close business ties existing between the UAE and Iran to replicate fully its popularity fully into Iran.

Renault Kwid Iran 2015. Picture courtesy lefigaro.frThe Renault Kwid has already triggered interest in Iran.

Renault

Today Laurent Fabius, the first French foreign minister to visit Iran in 12 years, announced that “PSA Peugeot-Citroen, previously the market leader in Iran, could find it more difficult to return to the country than fellow French car group Renault”. Wait did the French government not increase its participation in Renault in the past few months, in effect installing Mr Fabius in a glorified PR role with Renault? Nice try Mr Fabius, but we at BSCB disagree. Fabius’ justification for this statement is that “Iranian leaders criticise Peugeot for leaving a few years ago in a way they dispute”. The fact is Renault did leave as well, and hasn’t showed any concrete signs yet of its return whereas PSA-Peugeot Citroen is already in advanced joint-venture talks with Iran Khodro as we mentioned above. Renault was a small player in Iran even before the sanctions: it held a 5.9% market share in 2012.

Renault Tondar 90. Picture courtesy WikipediaRenault Tondar 90

The main Renault production in Iran is currently the Tondar 90, a rebadged first generation Dacia Logan launched in 2007 here. In the first month of production, a spectacular 100.000 orders were received but this never materialised into sales with the Tondar 90 peaking at 77,416 during the Persian year 1391 (April 2012-March 2013). If Iran Khodro found it vital to try by all means to maintain production of Peugeot models post-2012 sanctions, it wasn’t the case for Renault Pars, a joint-venture held at 51% by Renault and 49% by Iran’s Industrial Development and Renovation Organisation, IKCO and Saipa, manufacturer of the Tondar 90 which saw its production implode to 20.000 annual units after the sanctions. Renault will need to rework its alliances with local manufacturers and update the models it wants to produce in Iran, starting with the new generation Logan and the Kwid, originally destined to India but which apparently triggered interest in Iran as well.

Lifan X60 Iran 2015. Picture courtesy of zr.ruThe Lifan X60 is assembled locally in Iran.

Chinese manufacturers

Unbeknownst to you if you aren’t a regular BSCB reader, Chinese manufacturers have stepped up their presence in Iran just as economic sanctions forced Western manufacturers to leave. Chery, Lifan, JAC, ZX Auto, Great Wall, Brilliance, FAW, Haima and Dongfeng (!) already assemble locally through partnership with domestic manufacturers such as Saipa and Pars Khodro, albeit at limited volumes. Geely was the #2 imported brand in the country in 2013 and Changan, BAIC and MG all rank within the Top 10 importers so far in 2015. These are not negligible details. No less than 9 Chinese manufacturers already have experience assembling locally, which put them at a clear advantage over import-only (for now) Toyota or Hyundai for example.

However despite this advantage, they may not the best placed to compete in Iran yet, as reliability issues have already plagued their recent implant in the country. As is often the case where Chinese manufacturers export, their presence is very fragmented across numerous brands, each handled by different distributors and assembled through various alliances with domestic manufacturers. Brilliance however has displayed strong optimism when opening their assembly lines in cooperation with Saipa last May, announcing a production of 30.000 units in the first year and 100,000 units of annual capacity. See above Brilliance promotion video for Iran (in Persian). Among Chinese importers, Geely and Changan seem to have the best chances at long-term success in Iran, but they may need to establish local assembly hubs to pretend at a significant share of the Iranian market.

Zamyad Padra Iran. Picture courtesy persiankhodro.comThe Zamyad Padra is a rebadged Tianqi Meiya TM1020F assembled locally.

Chinese manufacturers may have their best card to play with their no-frills pickups, an obvious choice for a large part of the population that won’t be able to afford even the lower-spec Toyota Hilux or Nissan Navara just yet… Up until this year, the best-selling pickup in Iran was derived from the 1967 Hillman Hunter, such designs as the 1970 Nissan Junior and 1977 Mazda B-Series are still in production and the latest domestic launch (April 2015) is essentially a pickup variant of the 1987 Peugeot 405. The ZX Auto Grand Tiger, Great Wall Wingle and Dongfeng Rich are already assembled locally and they should be joined by a flurry of new entrants in the coming years, potentially unlocking the holy grail for China.

BMW X4 Iran 2015Roughly 100 BMW X4 get imported into Iran each month.

The rest

The German manufacturers with the best immediate prospects in Iran are BMW and Mercedes, currently among the Top 10 importers in the country. For example, roughly one hundred BMW X4 already arrive in Iran each month… There is a huge untapped potential for luxury SUVs and these two manufacturers keep launching new ones, so their sales in Iran should sky-rocket in the coming years.

Paradoxically, just as the Volkswagen Group outsold Toyota to become the #1 car manufacturer in the world, not only is its absence in Iran surprising but also the fact it has no plans to enter this market in the near future. Volkswagen previously built the Gol hatchback with Iranian partner Kerman Khodro and we see the Brazilian Up fitting the busy Tehran streets best. Before the economic sanctions were implemented, Germany was Iran’s #1 business partner, so Volkswagen’s absence shouldn’t last too long.

For their part, General Motors and Ford will have to wait longer to navigate a deeper layer of American sanctions that will continue to bar Americans and their banks from Iran trade in the foreseeable future. According to Automotive News, GM declined to comment on Tuesday’s historic deal announcing the end of economic sanctions.

First Half 2015 Reports for the Top 20 markets in the world

July 9th, 2015 No comments

Mercedes C-Class UK June 2015. Picture courtesy whatcar.co.ukMercedes C-Class – the UK market evolves at all-time record heights in 2015.

See also: First Quarter 2015 updates for the Top 12 markets in the world

See also: Full Year 2014 Reports: 133 markets now available

Here you will find the direct links to the Special 1st Half 2015 Full Reports for the Top 20 markets in the world. This page is updated each time a new Report is pushed live.

World 1st Half 2015: Volkswagen outsells Toyota for the first time

China 1st Half 2015: Domestic carmakers regain ground in shy market

USA 1st Half 2015: Nissan Rogue, Chrysler 200 and Chevy Colorado game changers

Europe 1st Half 2015: Recovery now firmly in place – albeit artificial?

Japan 1st Half 2015: Mercedes impressive in market down 11%

Germany 1st Half 2015: Golf, Passat and Polo further Volkswagen domination

UK 1st Half 2015: Registrations up 7% to highest-ever half year score

India 1st Half 2015: Maruti, Hyundai and Honda impress

Brazil 1st Half 2015: Fiat Palio #1, models ranking turned upside down

France 1st Half 2015: Shaky recovery lifts market up 1 million units

Canada 1st Half 2015: Pickups lift market up to record level

Italy 1st Half 2015: SUV craze energises market up 15%

South Korea 1st Half 2015: Hyundai Porter takes control

Russia 1st Half 2015: Hyundai and Kia winners in damaged market

Mexico 1st Half 2015: Nissan surfs on record wave, Hyundai in Top 10

Australia 1st Half 2015: Mazda graduates to #2 in record market

Spain 1st Half 2015: Seat Leon ahead of Ibiza in market up 23%

Indonesia 1st Half 2015: Pickups winners in market down 18%

Iran 1st Half 2015: Coming soon

Turkey 1st Half 2015: Fiat Linea reclaims pole position

Saudi Arabia 1st Half 2015: Coming soon

Thailand 1st Half 2015: Toyota Hilux transitions, Honda HR-V makes a splash

The Top 20 markets in the world:

Pos Market H1 2015 /14 H1 2014 Pos FY14
1 China 11,850,000 1% 11,735,000 1 1
2 USA 8,523,058 4% 8,160,000 2 2
Europe 7,410,510 8% 6,833,692
3 Japan 2,676,634 -11% 3,005,806 3 3
4 Germany 1,618,949 5% 1,538,268 5 5
5 UK 1,376,889 7% 1,287,265 6 8
6 India 1,321,367 5% 1,259,109 7 6
7 Brazil 1,269,853 -20% 1,582,569 4 4
8 France 1,017,235 6% 957,696 9 9
9 Canada 933,439 3% 909,186 10 10
10 Italy 876,447 15% 762,744 12 12
11 South Korea 850,946 7% 798,237 11 11
12 Russia 782,094 -36% 1,229,931 8 7
13 Mexico 609,825 22% 500,360 15 14
14 Australia 578,427 3% 559,951 14 15
15 Spain 560,110 23% 459,479 16 17
16 Indonesia 525,479 -17% 629,393 13 13
17 Iran (e) 520,000 30% 400,000 19 18
18 Turkey 432,550 51% 286,861 22 20
19 Saudi Arabia (e) 422,000 3% 408,073 18 19
20 Thailand 369,109 -16% 440,911 17 16

Note: China, USA, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Russia, South Korea, Mexico, Australia, Indonesia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Thailand data include LCV sales, the others don’t.

Categories: Featured Category, World

Discover the Top 1000 best-selling cars in the world

June 23rd, 2015 4 comments

Toyota Corolla World 2014. Picture courtesy of u-car.com.twToyota Corolla World 2014 GenI-XIAbove: the Toyota Corolla is the best-selling car in the world in 2014.
Below:1st gen Corolla with the three 11th gen Corolla variants (Japan/NA/World)

* See the Top 1116 best-selling cars in the world by clicking on the title *

The much awaited worldwide models ranking is finally here, and it is exclusive to BestSellingCarsBlog. For the first time we have added notes for each car so it is crystal clear what variants are included in the worldwide sales figures, as often a car can be sold under various names and/or brands depending on the region of the world. Hopefully this makes it easier to gauge what really are the best-selling cars in the world in 2014. Both in 2012 and 2013 we witnessed a cutthroat battle for world supremacy between the Toyota Corolla and the Ford Focus. This year the situation is drastically different, and the Toyota Corolla marks one full decade in the worldwide #1 spot. On one hand, Focus sales are softening in all 3 large sales poles: in the U.S (-6%), China (-3%) and Europe (-1%), and took a hit in Brazil and Russia, resulting in a 8% worldwide drop to 1.026 million units. On the other hand, the two-pronged launch of the 11th generation Corolla in China (Corolla/Levin) has boosted worldwide sales of the nameplate 8% to 1.352 million units, now completely out of reach of the Focus, and that is even when excluding the Japanese Corolla (110.931).

VW Golf World 2014The VW Golf is the 4th best-selling nameplate in the world in 2014.

Below the Hyundai Elantra regular at the highest level and graduating to the worldwide podium this year at #3 (+2%), thanks to the Mk7 generation now on sale in every corner of the globe the VW Golf is up 3 spots on 2013 to #4 with sales up 18% to 922.800, knocking the Ford F-Series down to #5 (-1%). Helped by its success in Russia and a number of emerging markets, the Hyundai Accent delivers an excellent performance this year: up 10 ranks and 27% on last year to #6 with just above 800.000 worldwide deliveries, above the Toyota Camry (-4%).

Wuling Hongguang World 2014The Wuling Hongguang is #8 worldwide in 2014 – almost solely thanks to China.

But the award of the most spectacular progression in the entire worldwide Top 30 this year goes to the Wuling Hongguang, the best-selling vehicle in the #1 market in the world, China, and up 15 spots to 8th place overall thanks to sales up 40% to 763.526 including a handful of rebadged Chevrolet Envoy sold in India and South America. Adding up a multitude of various nameplates under which it is sold, the Renault Logan breaks into the worldwide Top 10 this year thanks to sales up 7% to 760.385 units. Other great gainers in the Top 20 include the Nissan Sentra (+16%), Toyota RAV4 and Ford Kuga (both at +15%).

Hyundai Grand i10 India 2014. Picture courtesy of motorbeam.comHyundai i10 worldwide sales are up 77% in 2014 with a boost from India.

If we extend the scope to the Top 100, the most impressive nameplates worldwide going down the ladder include the Ram Pickup (+21%), Honda Fit (+20%), VW Lavida (+22% thanks to the arrival of the Gran Lavida hatchback), Nissan X-Trail (+68% with the new generation’s success in China and most parts of the world), Hyundai i10 (+77% with the arrival of the Grand i10 and Xcent sedan in India), Mazda3 (+25%), Haval H6 (+45%), the Audi A3 up a splendid 53% thanks to the addition of the sedan variant and its launch in China and the U.S., Peugeot 308 up 23%, Opel Mokka up 59%, Ford Ecosport up 34%, Chevrolet Onix up 95% thanks to the addition of the Prisma and the Jeep Cherokee up 481%.

Peugeot 2008 Renault Captur World July 2013. Picture courtesy of LargusThe Peugeot 2008 outsells the Renault Captur worldwide in 2014.

Outside the Top 100, notice the Skoda Rapid up 136% to #111, the Peugeot 2008 up 175% to #112, Renault Captur up 107% to #116, Toyota Noah up 150% to #121 thanks to its and its twin the Voxy’s facelifts and the addition of the Esquire, the Honda N-WGN up 13-fold to #167 for its first full year, the emerging markets version of the Toyota Yaris up to #168, Honda Vezel up to #193, BMW 4 Series up to #205 and the Mercedes S-Class doubling its sales year-on-year to #237.

See also:

Full Year 2014 Reports: 133 markets now available

World Full Year 2014: Discover the #1 models in 177 countries

World: 1960-2014 Historical Data now available

Previous year: World Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 1000 best-selling models

Two years ago: World Full Year 2012: Discover the Top 1000 best-selling models

Full Year 2014 Top 1116 worldwide best-sellers vs. Full Year 2013 figures below.

The rest of this content is for 1 Year members only.
Log In Register
Categories: Featured Category, World

STRATEGY: Where is China headed?

May 28th, 2015 3 comments

Prepare for bloodPrepare for blood…

Discover the Top 8 trends currently affecting the Chinese market below.

China’s new vehicle market growth is smoothing out. The perception out there is that the entire market is slowing down, whereas only its growth is for now – a big difference. Some analysts say this is the beginning of the end, I say the Chinese new vehicle market remains the most dynamic and the fastest evolving in the world and will continue to be so for many years to come. Even if its growth did stop forever, we would still be left with a 25 million annual units Chinese market in our hands vs. 17 million for the U.S. and 15 million for Europe currently – including commercials.

But the growth hasn’t stopped and Chinese sales trends are evolving faster than ever, with segments like microvans rapidly losing ground while others like MPVs and SUVs outperforming the market 6-fold… A record 75 new nameplates have kick-started local production in the past year and new factories are opening on a monthly basis. General Motors for example is investing $14 billion to add 5 million annual units of production capacity by 2018 through five additional assembly plants here. A more timid growth with ever more competitors in the market: prepare for blood and aggressive price wars. Where is China headed in the next 15 years? We will explore the Top 8 trends currently at play in the Chinese new vehicle market in order to decipher its mid-term evolution.

Kashgari farmer Jonway UFO A380Kashgar, Western China: the region has the greatest sales potential.

1. All eyes on the lower Tier cities prize

China grew 14% in 2013 to 22 million units, becoming the first ever new vehicle market above 20m annual units, another 7% in 2014 to 23.5 million and should improve by 5% in 2015 to just under 25 million deliveries. Analysts diverge in their view of the mid-term future for China. I remain highly optimistic, and it would appear Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn agrees: “From time to time we have slowdowns, but fundamentally I’m still very optimistic on the fact that the long-term trend in China is up and carmakers should be prepared for that,” he said recently, pointing to the country’s low car ownership level compared with other major markets. If the big eastern cities along the coast like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou are starting to peak out due to saturated ownership and stringent new registration restrictions put in place to curb pollution, there is still an enormous reservoir of growth lying in lower Tier cities.

Total vehicle sales – Big 3:

2000 2015 (p) 2030 (e)
China 1.8m 24.7m 40.2m
U.S. 17.8m 16.9m 18.5m
Europe 18.5m 15.8m 16.8m

(p): projection (e): BSCB estimate

Before we go into any further regional detail, it’s worth establishing where the long term potential for Chinese sales stands. Last year, American car buyers bought 52 new vehicles per 1.000 residents in a saturated market. It seems difficult for any mature market to significantly outpace that rate in the short to mid-term. China stood at 17 new vehicles per thousand in 2014, and were it to reach the same buying rate as the U.S., it would push its total new vehicle market to a mind-blowing 70 million annual units. A level it will probably never hit, but progressively lifting the buying rate to 30 new vehicles per thousand in the next 15 years is a totally reasonable if a little conservative prospect. That would place China just over 40 million annual new vehicle sales by 2030, way above the U.S. and European markets combined – themselves for the most part stagnating over the period.

Geely Vision China 2015. Picture courtesy 91aiche.comThe Geely Vision is a hit in lower Tier cities.

As I detailed in my article STRATEGY: China light-vehicle market to reach 30 million units by 2020, a large part of China’s future growth will come from both the less developed regions of the country located in the hinterland and lower Tier cities that are now starting to benefit from denser dealership networks. By 2020, Western China’s share of total sales is expected to rise to 26%, up from 18% in 2011. In the meantime, the coastal region’s market share will drop from 60% to 43%, according to predictions from IHS Automotive. Up until now, the bulk of the Chinese car market has resided up until now in Tier 1 and 2 cities – the largest and most developed ones. As a result, there are now 128 vehicles per 1,000 residents in Tier 1 cities. This ratio falls to 54 in Tier 3 cities and 28 in Tier 4 cities, and these cities are now starting to have a significant impact on national auto sales as we will detail in the SUV section of this article. Note these Tier 3 and 4 cities are not all located in the hinterland, they are sometimes very close to Tier 1 and 2 cities, so the growth regions are not completely geographical but mostly demographic.

In less populated areas, car buyers tastes are skewed more strongly towards Chinese manufacturers. If last year the prospects for domestic carmakers seemed cloudy, they have managed a complete turnaround thanks to a flurry of new affordable SUVs, and whereas it seemed like hinterland Chinese buyers would inexorably follow their eastern counterparts’ taste shift towards foreign brands, this is now less certain. The race for the lower-Tier cities first time car buyers is now wide open and competition will gradually intensify over the next two decades to woo rural populations getting a new access to car ownership. There are an estimated 100+ Chinese vehicle brands in activity today, when including truck and new energy manufacturers serving only limited parts of the country. This number will plunge rapidly to reach about 25 to 30 by 2030, and we will witness numerous price wars that will progressively shed the industry of the less-efficient manufacturers.

In this context, who will trigger and benefit from future Chinese growth?

24. Brilliance V3Brilliance V3 at Auto Shanghai 2015

2. Domestic brands on the brink of breakthrough

After a tough five years that saw their share market at home recede to roughly one-third of overall sales, Chinese manufacturers have seen their importance in their domestic market take a turn for the better in the past 12 months, rising to 43.1% of Chinese sales over the first 3 months of 2015, up 4.2 percentage points from a year earlier. As evidenced by my coverage of domestic carmakers at Auto Shanghai 2015, Chinese carmakers are constantly reinventing themselves with various degrees of dynamism, making the Chinese market the fastest-evolving in the world. However their progress is taking a different route than the one the government was hoping for two decades ago.

Starting in the eighties with Volkswagen, the barrier to entry for foreign carmakers in the Chinese market is a requirement to form joint-ventures with local partners in order to gain the right to manufacture locally, in essence the right to ‘unlock China’. By doing this, the Chinese government was hoping for a technology transfer towards local brands. It didn’t happen. In fact, the domestic brands faring the best at the moment are ones that are for the most part privately owned and not embroiled in partnerships with foreign carmakers.

Geely GC9 China April 2015Geely GC9

Thanks to a new focus on strong branding and streamlined lineups, a few domestic actors are now enjoying surging sales at home. Great Wall spun off the Haval SUV brand to tremendous success in July 2013 and has seen its SUV lineup sales soar 71% year-on-year in April to 63.921 units. The Haval H6 is now among the three overall best-selling vehicles in the country. In January 2014 Geely got rid of the Emgrand, Gleagle and Englon brands to market its vehicles exclusively under its namesake brand and, going hand-in-hand with an extremely impressive quality overhaul that is finally showing the benefits of its 2010 purchase of Swedish manufacturer Volvo, has managed to push domestic sales 45% in April to 38.648. The EC7 sedan remains the best-seller of its kind among domestic nameplates with 75.189 deliveries so far in 2015.

Another example is Chery, deleting the Rely and Riich brands in September 2012 to concentrate on its namesake brand for passenger cars and Karry for commercial vehicles. However they have disappointingly spawned two sub-brands – Tiggo and Arrizo – since. Baby steps, as habits die hard in China. Even though it is evolving at dangerously breakneck speed, ChangAn is another success story, placing three models among the 10 best-selling domestic vehicles so far this year: the Eado sedan (70.231), CS35 SUV (62.110) and CS75 SUV (56.116). Led by Great Wall’s Haval, Geely and BYD, all relatively unscathed by joint-ventures with foreign actors and – most significantly – all privately owned, Chinese manufacturers have never been as close to world standards as now. And their improvements are set to continue at the same rate, shaping into a true threat for carmakers the world around by 2020.

4. VW Santana Karakul LakeVW Santana on the Karakoram Highway, Western China.

3. Foreign manufacturers caught in a race to luxury

In a context where some domestic carmakers are finally finding their way to profitable sales volumes, clearer brand identities and ever-improving quality coupled with aggressive pricing, foreign manufacturers may see their time under the sun reduce drastically over the next decade. Their capacity to compete with domestic actors relies on almost instant reactivity to fast-moving trends, as demonstrated in their sales behaviour in 2015. The SUV explosion has caught both Volkswagen and Toyota by surprise, resulting in significant market share loss this year. Hyundai and Kia are safe with their ix25 and KX3 tapping right into the small SUV craze and becoming instant blockbusters. Nissan is following at a distance.

If this article had been published 6 months ago, Volkswagen would have been best positioned to benefit from the future growth expected in China’s less developed areas. However their failure to launch a small SUV lineup is worrying, at a time where Tier 3 and 4 cities are lapping up bargain-priced JAC, ChangAn and Zotye fares. Granted, Volkswagen is still and by far the most popular/aspirational brand in China. During the first half of 2014 when sedan sales growth was still around 15%, the market share lost by Chinese manufacturers in the compact segment was almost exactly matched by market share gains at Volkswagen while Japanese, U.S. and Korean makers were flat. So Volkswagen is the best armed to compete with domestic brands in the sedan segment, but also the most vulnerable when and if Chinese carmakers reclaim lost ground in that area.

Hyundai Mistra China 2014. Picture courtesy of auto.sohu.comHyundai Mistra

Two years ago, Volkswagen launched its New Santana with a starting price of 84.900 yuan ($13.700), only slightly more than the Geely EC7’s 69.800 yuan. Automotive News China quotes Zhang Lei, a 35-year-old office worker in Beijing who bought a New Santana last year: “People say German cars are of good quality, so why not buy a German car if it’s not expensive?” However since then Geely launched the new Vision at 52.900 yuan ($8.500), cutting the Santana by almost 40% and displaying some interior elements of a higher quality than a Santana. As a result, Volkswagen has launched a price war in recent months to keep its lower-end lineup competitive in the face of vastly improved domestic entries, at the risk of significantly eroding its profits in the region. Volkswagen is now caught between lowering their prices to better compete with domestic carmakers and maintaining its premium reputation.

Brand loyalty is low in China and more than 90 million car owners will replace their first vehicle in the next few years. Cut-throat competition is a new element in the market and Korean Hyundai and Kia could see a much larger increase of their Chinese sales than Toyota and Volkswagen over the next decade. Not just because of a better reactivity to changing trends: Toyota and Volkswagen with undoubtedly launch affordable small SUVs to keep a foot in the market – albeit a couple of years late. Two more political and attitudinal elements may come into play. Firstly, Nippon manufacturers aren’t immune to future bursts of anti-Japanese sentiment, like the one that severely handicapped them a couple of years ago. 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the end of WW2 and the rest of the year will be another sensitive period for them. Secondly, having launched in China less than a decade ago, Korean carmakers Hyundai and Kia are free of any poor quality perceptions dating from the nineties that are still plaguing them in some other countries and can grow unabated in the next decade.

Mercedes GLA China April 2015. Picture courtesy wolfexp.netMercedes started local GLA production and is best placed for explosive growth in China.

The Chinese luxury segment has already become the largest in the world and its influence will further increase over the next two decades, lifting Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz to a likely continuous string of worldwide sales records. The Top 3 German luxury carmakers, already ultra-dominant in the Chinese luxury aisle, are poised to continue improving their Chinese sales drastically, with Mercedes displaying the highest potential for explosive growth. In 2014, Audi sold 579.000 cars in China (+18%), with BMW at 456.000 (+17%) and Mercedes at 282.000 (+29%). Growth was cut in 2015 but should resume in the coming years. It is a realistic prospect to see Mercedes leapfrog both Audi and BMW to become China’s #1 luxury brand by 2025, simply because the Stuttgart manufacturer has completely refocused its attention onto the Chinese market, now front and centre in its worldwide operations as its impressive display at Auto Shanghai hinted at. Our forecast for 2015: Audi at 606.000 sales (+5%), BMW at 478.000 (+5%) and Mercedes at 335.000 (+18%).

Audi started manufacturing cars in China as early as 1991 while both BMW and Mercedes have been doing so for just a decade, earning the 3 German carmakers a credibility in the luxury segment that will be near-impossible to erode in the next decade or so. At this stage only Infiniti, Volvo and Cadillac are also manufacturing locally to avoid China’s 25% import tariff, but their sales remain modest: Volvo sold under 80.000 vehicles in 2014 (47% locally produced) while Cadillac delivered under 70.000 (57%) and Infiniti just 30.000 (8%). Acura recently announced it will start building locally soon, leaving the odd one out, Lexus, with no plans for local manufacturing despite a decade-long presence in the country and 75.000 sales in 2014. Lincoln for its part is enjoying a fast and furious all-imported start with 3 of its Top 10 dealers globally by sales now located in China only 12 months after landing in the country.

Haval-H1-China-November-2014.-Picture-courtesy-of-auto.qq_.com_The Haval H1 is one of dozens of new Chinese SUVs launched in the past 12 months.

4. The entire market is now ditching sedans for SUVs…

Disposable income is on a steep rise for the majority of Chinese and their car purchase patterns are changing accordingly, with urban and rural buyers each displaying widely different tastes than they were just two years ago. Last October, sedan sales dropped 1% from a year earlier for the first time in 7 years, marking the start of a shaky period for this once-thriving segment in China. In urban areas, more than one-third of buyers now opt for an SUV when the time comes to replace their first vehicle vs. 25% for China overall. After soaring by 36% in 2014 to 4.1 million units, SUV sales are accelerating further this year with a 49% year-on-year surge over the first 4 months of 2015 to 1.79 million units, hinting at an annual rate of over 6 million sales…

China – Top 10 SUVs and sedans 2015 year-to-date:

Pos SUV model 2015 /14 Sedan model 2015 /14
1 Haval H6 118,516 26% VW Lavida 170,168 -12%
2 VW Tiguan 88,609 1% VW Santana 114,479 7%
3 JAC Refine S3 66,295 new VW Jetta 107,680 7%
4 ChangAn CS35 62,110 71% Ford Focus 99,675 -26%
5 ChangAn CS75 56,116 new Hyundai Elantra 96,713 30%
6 Haval H2 56,074 new VW Sagitar 96,173 -6%
7 BAIC Huansu S3 49,738 new Nissan Sylphy 89,995 -8%
8 Ford Kuga 42,593 -3% Hyundai Verna 84,821 14%
9 Nissan X-Trail 41,942 182% VW Passat 84,275 -15%
10 Zotye T600 39,307 302% Chevrolet Cruze 80,170 -6%

Seven of the Top 10 best-selling SUVs in China so far in 2015 are Chinese, four are all-new and only one (the Ford Kuga) sees its sales decline year-on-year. Reversely, the Top 10 best-selling sedans in the country are all foreign but 6 out of 10 are in decline, including the #1 seller – the VW Lavida (-12%) – with the Ford Focus losing the most ground at -26%. In what may be the most interesting reversal of fortunes in the past few years, thanks to a flurry of affordable models all launched in the past 24 months, domestic manufacturers are now dominating the SUV segment with a record 56% share, evolving at double the sales level compared to a year ago.

ChangAn CS75 China July 2014. Picture courtesy of auto.sohu.comThe ChangAn CS75 has found 109.000 buyers since launching exactly a year ago.

According to LMC Automotive, SUV buyers are mostly residents of Tier 3 and Tier 4 cities, traditionally more fond of Chinese car brands because of more affordable prices and less dense foreign manufacturers dealer networks. When their sedan sales got bogged down by higher-status Volkswagen, Chevrolet and Kia, domestic carmakers found salvation in designing attractive-looking SUVs with prices contained below 100.000 yuan (US$16.000). These Chinese vehicles only are Sports Utility Vehicles by name, in no way true four-wheel drives capable of stepping out of urban areas, but they are high enough on the road for Chinese customers in Tier 3 and Tier 4 cities. Mission accomplished.

Wuling Hongguang China September 2014. Picture courtesy of cheshi.com2The Wuling Hongguang has transformed the Chinese car market forever.

5. … while rural buyers switch from microvans to MPVs

If urban dwellers are abandoning their entry-level sedans to lap up an increasing variety of Chinese-branded SUVs, their newly prosperous rural counterparts are also moving upwards, ditching microvans for low-cost MPVs. In 2014, the MPV segment was the fastest-growing in the country with sales surging 47% to 1.91 million units just as microvan were losing 17% to 1.33 million deliveries. In 2015, MPVs are up by a further 28% so far and should end the year just under 2.5 million units. The good news for Chinese manufacturers is that 85% of all MPVs sales go to domestic brands, being a segment mostly popular in rural areas.

Price comparison – Wuling MPVs and microvans:

Model Cat April sales Price range (yuan) Price range (US$)
Wuling Journey MPV 4,011 66.000 – 77.000 10.600 – 12.400
Wuling Hongguang MPV 53,086 44.800 – 69.800 7.200 – 11.250
Wuling Hongguang V Micro 25,506 42.800 – 51.800 6.900 – 8.300
Wuling Rongguang Micro 17,475 41.800 – 46.800 6.700 – 7.500
Wuling Sunshine Micro 21,005 29.800 – 46.000 4.800 – 7.400

Wuling Sunshine microvan – Hongguang MPV sales comparison:

Model 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015(e)
Wuling Sunshine 699,037 754,961 731,749 523,841 455,718 308,668 269,000
Wuling Hongguang 0 5,000 177,000 316,217 530,050 750,019 660,000

(e): BSCB estimate

The sole instigator of this momentous sales trend is the Wuling Hongguang, originally introduced in September 2010 and at first classified as a light commercial vehicle – it was then considered as a larger microvan. The Hongguang didn’t appear inside the Top 5 LCV best-sellers until February 2012 (24.694 sales – see China LCV February 2012: Wuling Hongguang’s entrance) but topped the overall Chinese charts for the first time in January 2013 and the following month was selling almost 30.000 more units than any other nameplate in the country. It went on to be the best-selling vehicle in the country in both 2013 and 2014, with its monthly sales record standing at an out-of-this-world 81.153 units in January 2014.

Baojun 730 China September 2014. Picture courtesy of auto.sina.com.cn230.000 Baojun 730 have hit Chinese roads in just 9 months.

As I detailed in my article China April 2015: Wuling Hongguang V takes control, the leap from microvan to MPV is very significant, representing a 50% price hike even though the rates remain minuscule by Western standards: the Hongguang starts at 42.800 yuan (US$7.200) vs. 29.800 ($4.800) for the Wuling Sunshine, the all-categories best-seller in China until 2012. Who purchases microvans? Traditionally, families, small companies and taxi operators in rural areas and small towns to carry goods and/or passengers. While both the Sunshine and the Hongguang can carry five to eight people, with per capita disposable income in rural China leaping 12% to 8.900 yuan last year, rural buyers are snapping up Hongguangs like hot dumplings simply because they can now afford to.

What the Chinese market is experiencing right now with the Wuling Hongguang is similar to European car buyers suddenly switching from purchasing 600.000 annual VW Golf to as many annual VW Passat in a matter of three years, or American consumers completely ditching the Toyota Camry to replace it with 450.000 annual Toyota 4 Runner.

It took a lot longer for other domestic manufacturers to cotton on to the Hongguang success and what it meant for the microvan category (death) than it did for them to understand the SUV craze. In fact, SAIC-GM-Wuling is reinventing the category once again with the launch of the slightly more upmarket and extraordinarily successful Baojun 730, clocking an incredible 230.000 deliveries in its first 9 months on sale. Sales of Hongguang clones (Chana Honor, Dongfeng Fengguang and BAIC Weiwang M20), although dynamic, are still far below. The future of the MPV segment may be further upmarket: Wuling launched the much larger Journey a few months ago, and Brilliance unveiled the Huasong MPV-exclusive brand at Auto Shanghai 2015 to compete with Buick’s GL8. Expect Wuling to regularly revive the category to maintain its supremacy.

Dongfeng Rich 2015. Picture courtesy chinaautoweb.com2015 Dongfeng Rich

6. Pickup trucks: the largest untapped segment

Now that the SUV and MPV segments are truly taking off, mimicking many light vehicle markets around the world, the last frontier is the pick-up sector, currently plagued by outdated legislations but home of the greatest sales potential of all in China. Pending a legislative adjustment, we foresee Chinese pickup sales will reach 10% of overall sales by 2030 – or 4 million annual vehicles vs. just 1.9% and 200.000 now. Pickups are where Chinese manufacturers perform their best on the world stage, as demonstrated by their relative success in export markets. So what isn’t working at the moment?

In 2003, the Chinese government introduced the Road Traffic Safety Law which was giving free rein to city administrations on allowing pickups to drive on their streets. Most cities chose to classify pickups as commercial vehicles and banned them from entering. Yes you have read that right. Pickup trucks are not allowed within most Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai. But it doesn’t stop there: Automotive News China reports that to ease congestion during holidays, Chinese traffic regulators let sedan drivers use highways toll free whereas pickup drivers must pay. This may have made sense a decade ago when pickup trucks were the only vehicles of such size on the road along with medium and heavy trucks. But it is no longer true now that large SUVs have invaded China’s four corners. Besides, under existing regulations, microvans – also used in rural and suburban areas to carry people and goods – are considered passenger vehicles, and therefore allowed into cities…

GAC Gonow GP150GAC Gonow GP 150 at Auto Shanghai 2015

This restrictive legislation has had a devastating effect on the Chinese pickup market. Roughly 435.000 new pickups were sold in China in 2014, or just 1.9% of the total vehicle market and with sales down 4% year-on-year their market share is also decreasing. Yet market leader Great Wall still sells 10,000 pickups each month in China on average. It is still a very dynamic segment despite the restrictions, with at least 16 Chinese manufacturers currently offering a pickup lineup. I spotted the all-new 2015 Dongfeng Rich in Mohe in far north China, while GAC Gonow unveiled a rather good-looking GP150 pickup at Auto Shanghai and Great Wall launched a new variant of its Wingle pickup late last year.

Paradoxically given the gagging they suffer at home, pickups are the one single segment where Chinese manufacturers can already compete with foreign automakers in mature export markets such as Italy, the UK, South Africa and Australia where the Great Wall Wingle ranked among the Top 50 best-selling nameplates in 2012. The same cannot be said yet about sedans, SUVs and MPVs. Understandably given the current restrictions, global automakers haven’t bothered venturing into the Chinese pickup market just yet. Only Isuzu and Nissan currently sell quickly facelifted versions of antediluvian models, but the potential for pickup sales in China is enormous, both for commercial and private uses.

Ford F-150 Raptor Kashgar ChinaFord F-150 Raptor in Kashgar, Western China

With Chinese car buyers progressively americanising their tastes, it is no real surprise to see at least one Ford F-150 Raptor and Toyota Tundra in each northern Chinese city I visited this year, big or small. Despite astronomical prices and driving restrictions, Chinese customers are still privately importing these monsters. The demand for pickup trucks is almost screaming at you when visiting the country. It is apparent in the commercial segment where a recent transfer from microvans to mini pickups can be seen – keep in mind the latter are considered passenger vehicles and therefore are able to grow sales freely. Result: the Wuling Mini Truck has topped the LCV sales charts a couple of times in the past 6 months.

But part of the SUVsation of the world car market also means a large part of pickup trucks are now purchased and used in the same way as SUVs, not just for commercial hauling. As Automotive News China points out, if municipal restrictions on pickups are abolished, farmers could drive their pickups to go shopping in cities, a much more chest-beating experience than in a microvan or low-cost MPV. Likewise, well-off inhabitants of coastal cities could tow boats or stow surfboards with their pickups. We believe it’s a matter of when rather than if, and once pickups can be driven freely across the country, expect a gold rush in the same vein as the one we are currently witnessing for SUVs and MPVs. Pickup sales are bound to grow exponentially from that moment on.

Used car market in China. Picture courtesy of 51auto.comThe notion of used car is a new concept in China.

7. Prepare for a used car explosion

Last March, China’s largest search engine Baidu – dominating a market where Google is banned – joined a U.S. private equity firm and hedge fund to invest $170 million in China’s largest used car auction website Uxin. It is the latest round of funding raised by Uxin to expand a new trading platform designed to allow auto retailers to sell used cars directly to individuals. Last year, China’s used car market generated $58 billion, a 26% growth from a year earlier while volumes are up 16% at 6.05 million units vs. +7% for the new vehicle market. Up until very recently, the very concept of a used car was a rather alien notion in China given how recent the uptake of cars in the country is. Moreover, in China there is a strong cultural preference for new items, rather than those tarnished by previous ownership. Without regulations, skepticism over the quality of used vehicles could be justified, reports Autotalk NZ. But this is all changing as the Chinese used car market matures.

China – New and used vehicle sales evolution:

2000 2015 2030 (e)
New vehicles 1.8m 24.7m 40.2m
Used vehicles 0.2m 7.0m 41.5m

(e): BSCB estimate

At the moment, one used vehicle is sold for every four new ones in China, a diametrically opposite situation as the one observed in mature markets such as the U.S. and Europe (three to four used cars for every new one). But at the current rate, the number of used cars changing hands annually in China will even up with new ones by 2030. Sedans still account for the majority of used cars currently sold in the country (57%) above buses (16%), trucks (14%), light commercials (9%) and SUV (3%), reflecting the dominant structure of the market during the past decade. This too will change, when SUVs and MPVs currently sold as new will start hitting the used car market in five years time.

Nowadays, used car sales are still a largely unregulated area, with a whopping 95% of used car transactions made privately and escaping sales taxes. Large manufacturers are however slowly looking to enter the used market by reselling their own products second-hand complete with quality guarantees: Peugeot already has 700 certification centres around the country while Nissan, Audi and Volvo are following. Stringent new anti-pollution laws limiting the number of new registrations in the main big cities have also helped fuel increasing used car sales: they already are licensed and therefore unrestricted – a clear oversight by governments as these used cars typically pollute more than new ones and should instead be replaced, the way Europe has done with numerous scrappage schemes.

DENZA wird in einem deutsch-chinesischen Gemeinschaftsunternehmen von Daimler und BYD in Shenzhen gefertigt. / DENZA is manufactured by a Sino-German joint venture of Daimler and BYD in Shenzhen.Denza EV

8. The electric vehicle question mark

I have said it and will say it again, the current success – or lack thereof – of new energy vehicles has nothing to do with consumers’ increased environmental consciousness and everything to do with government policies. Cue Japan, California and Norway, offering the most generous incentives for new energy vehicles and consequently displaying the highest hybrid and EV sales ratios in the world. China has a well-documented tradition of imposing stringent government mandates onto the car market (joint-ventures with local partners, pollution-curbing new registration limitations…) and could lead the world in terms of electric vehicle adoption, if it decides to. With significant air pollution problems plaguing most large cities and limited oil resources, the Chinese government considers the uptake of electric cars a priority. But is it doing enough to encourage new energy vehicle sales? Carlos Ghosn said “not really” at this year’s Shanghai Auto Show.

Chinese EV sales are quadrupling so far in 2015 compared to last year but at 26.581 units in 3 months they still only represent a minuscule 0.4% of the overall market. The BYD Qin hybrid sedan has been the best-selling new energy vehicle in China ever since its launch in December 2013, totalling 2.625 sales in April. This is to be compared with an estimated 200-300 monthly sales average for the Tesla Model S in China and roughly 1.500 in the U.S. Still, the question mark remains as to whether EVs will truly have an impact on the overall Chinese market in the short to mid-term. It all depends on the Chinese government. Chinese punters will buy electric if they are mandated to: a recent visit to Kashgar in Western China showed all scooters in circulation in town to be electric.

Tesla Model S ChinaTesla has been struggling in China so far.

Among the various Chinese government mandates in place to encourage sales of new energy vehicles:

– All EVs are excluded from the new registration plate quota applied in China’s eight largest cities.

– Subsidies of up to 55,000 yuan (about $9,000) per EV vehicle, elimination of a 10% sales tax on some EVs.

– Subsidies for the construction of battery charging stations in various cities proportioned to the EV and plug-in hybrid sales in these cities. The aim is to install 140.000 charging stations this year vs. just 20.000 in place last year. The government’s plan calls for covering 16,000 kilometers (10,000 miles) of highways with fast-charger stations every 50 kilometers (31 miles) by 2020.

– All manufacturers selling in China need to display a fleetwide average consumption of 5L/100km (47 mpg) by 2020.

– Foreign automakers are required to develop EVs with their Chinese joint venture partners. This has prompted Toyota, traditionally EV-weary, to launch one EV vehicle with each Chinese partner later this year. Toyota however conceded to Automotive News that these are purely compliance vehicles and their focus will remain on hybrid technology.

Most manufacturers had at least one EV model to show at Auto Shanghai, but these looked more like compliance vehicles than genuine best-sellers. Elmar Degenhart, CEO of supplier giant Continental AG told Automotive News China “We are convinced that China will turn into the biggest market for electrification technologies. With the support of the government and regulation, the speed in that direction is developing quite rapidly.” The ball is in your camp President Xi Jinping.

– – –

Historical Data available for 104 markets

March 18th, 2015 3 comments

The Wartburg 353 was among the best-sellers in East Germany in the sixties.

Best Selling Cars Blog now covers detailed Historical Data for 104 markets.

Highlights include France since 1894Germany for each year since 1946UK for each year since 1965, Australia since 1946Sweden since 1950Brazil since 1954 and Norway and Italy since 1956. The next batch of updates will include complete USA data all the way up to the 1920s, complete France data since 1950, and much more.

Below you will find direct links for you to explore all Historical Data available for the countries listed.

IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER:

Algeria since 2004

Argentina since 1965

Australia since 1946

Austria since 1977

Bahrain since 2005

Belarus since 1970

Belgium since 1989

Bosnia & Herzegovina since 2008

Botswana since 1985

Brazil since 1954

Brunei since 2011

The VW Beetle was #1 in Germany from 1946 to 1973.

Bulgaria since 1980

California (USA) since 2011

Canada since 1984

Chile since 2004

China since 1980

Colombia since 1990

Croatia since 2003

Cyprus since 2005

Czechoslovakia 1969-1993

Czech Republic since 1993

The Renault 4CV was #1 in France from 1949 to 1955

Denmark since 1992

Dominican Republic since 2005

Ecuador since 2006

Egypt since 2005

England (UK) since 2013

Estonia since 1970

Europe since 1972

Europe (Central & Eastern) since 2002

Finland since 1971

France since 1894

The Moskvitsh Elite was #6 in Finland in 1971

Germany since 1946

Greece since 1932

Gulf Cooperation Council since 2005

Hong Kong (China) since 2010

Hungary since 1998

Iceland since 2001

India since 1950

Indonesia since 1976

Ireland since 1974

The Hindustan Ambassador is likely to have been #1 in India from 1950 to 1984

Iran since 1967

Israel since 2005

Italy since 1956

Japan since 1969

Kazakhstan since 1970

Kenya since 1997

Kuwait since 2005

Latvia since 1970

Liechtenstein since 2011

Lithuania since 1970

Luxembourg since 1994

The Ford Model T was #1 in the US (and the world) potentially from 1910 to 1926

Macedonia (Rep of) since 2007

Malawi since 2013

Malaysia since 2000

Mauritius since 2011

Mexico since 2003

Moldova since 1970

Monaco since 2011

Morocco since 2004

Netherlands since 1982

New Caledonia (France) since 2003

The Saab 96 was #2 in Sweden from 1966 to 1970

New Zealand since 1973

Northern Ireland (UK) since 2011

Norway since 1956

Oman since 2005

Pakistan since 1995

Panama since 2010

Paraguay since 2011

Peru since 2005

Philippines since 1995

Poland since 1992

Portugal since 1989

The Lada 2101-3 was #1 car in USSR in the seventies

Puerto Rico (USA) since 1990

Qatar since 2005

Romania since 1969

Russia/USSR since 1970

Saudi Arabia since 2005

Scotland (UK) since 2008

Serbia since 2007

Singapore since 2006

Slovakia since 1993

Slovenia since 2003

The Chevrolet Chevette was the last Passenger Car to dominate the US ranking – in 1981.

South Africa since 1973

South Korea since 1997

Spain since 1973 

Sweden since 1950

Switzerland since 1970

Taiwan since 2005

Tanzania since 2009

Thailand since 2004

Tunisia since 2010

Turkey since 1993

The Austin Mini ranked within the UK Top 10 up until 1981

Uganda since 2013

UK since 1965

Ukraine since 1970

United Arab Emirates since 2005

Uruguay since 2010

USA since 1908

Venezuela since 1997

Vietnam since 2003

Wales (UK) since 2013

World since 1960

Zimbabwe since 1958

Categories: Featured Category, World

Full Year 2014 Reports: 133 markets now available

January 13th, 2015 No comments

2. Ford F-250 GallupThe Ford F-Series lodges its 33rd consecutive winning year in the US in 2014.

See First Quarter 2015 updates for the Top 12 markets in the world here

This article is the portal to all Full Year 2014 Reports, you can find below all updates already live. This list is updated as new Reports get published, so make sure you check in often!

World updates:

World Full Year 2014: Toyota still #1, BMW leads luxury sales

World Full Year 2014: Total sales data now available for 144 countries

Big 3 world markets:

China Full Year 2014: Growth cools to 7% to record 23.5 million sales

USA Full Year 2014: Podium 100% pickup trucks for the first time in 11 years

USA Full Year 2014: Exclusive rankings State by State now available

California (USA) Full Year 2014: Now with detailed data available

Europe Full Year 2014: Sales up for the first time in 7 years, Octavia and A3 in Top 10

Europe Full Year 2014: Discover the Top 360 All-models and All-brands

All other markets available in alphabetical order:

Algeria Full Year 2014: Dacia Logan stays #1 in market down 20%

American Samoa (USA) Full Year 2014: Ford F-Series and Toyota Tacoma on top

Angola Full Year 2014: Suzuki and Hyundai on top

Argentina Full Year 2014: VW Gol new leader in market down 29%

Australia Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla holds onto top spot

Australia Full Year 2014: Discover the best-sellers State by State

Austria Full Year 2014: VW Golf leads, Hyundai i20 on podium

Bahrain Full Year 2014: Toyota Land Cruiser edges Prado out

Belarus Full Year 2014: VW Polo and Renault Sandero on top

Belgium Full Year 2014: VW Golf, BMW 3 Series and Renault Clio lead

Bolivia Full Year 2014: Suzuki Grand Vitara likely leader

Bosnia & Herzegovina Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia #1, Opel Astra above VW Golf

Botswana Full Year 2014: Hilux, Ranger and Land Cruiser Pickups on top

Brazil Full Year 2014: Fiat Palio ends 19 years of VW Gol reign

Brunei Full Year 2014: Toyota Vios and Mitsubishi Mirage on top

Bulgaria Full Year 2014: Dacia Dokker tops again, Skoda Octavia #2

Canada Full Year 2014: Ford F-Series and Ram Pickup break records

Chile Full Year 2014: Chevrolet leads in market down 11%

Colombia Full Year 2014: Chevrolet and Renault tops in record market

Costa Rica Full Year 2014: Toyota market leader

Croatia Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia back in charge

Cyprus Full Year 2014: Nissan Qashqai snaps last minute top spot

Czech Republic Full Year 2014: Skoda Rapid #2 in record market

Denmark Full Year 2014: VW Up leads in 4th straight record year

Ecuador Full Year 2014: Chevrolet Sail and D-Max on top

El Salvador Full Year 2013-2014: Toyota Hilux most popular

England (UK) Full Year 2014: Audi A3 even higher than in UK

Egypt Full Year 2014: Chevrolet TFR edges out Hyundai Verna

Estonia Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia outsells Honda CR-V to #1

Ethiopia Full Year 2014: Toyota Avanza and Hilux popular

Fiji Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux and Hyundai Elantra most popular

Finland Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia overtakes VW Golf to pole position

France Full Year 2014: Renault Captur on podium

Georgia Full Year 2014: Photo Report and analysis

Germany Full Year 2014: VW Golf celebrates 39 years in top spot, Audi A3 shines

Germany Private Sales Full Year 2014: Mercedes C-Class up to #4

Ghana Full Year 2014: Nissan outsells Toyota at 30% share

Greece Full Year 2014: Toyota Yaris resists Opel Corsa assault

Guatemala Full Year 2014: Pickup trucks gain momentum

Haiti Full Year 2014: Daihatsu Terios best-selling SUV

Hong Kong (China) Full Year 2014: Toyota monopolises podium with Hiace, Noah & Crown

Hungary Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia #1, Opel Mokka at world best

India Full Year 2014: Datsun Go underwhelms in market back up

Indonesia Full Year 2014: Toyota Avanza resists Honda Mobilio assault

Iraq Full Year 2014: First ever official data shows Toyota Hilux #1

Iran Full Year 1393 (2014/2015): Peugeot Pars/405 topple Saipa Pride

Ireland Full Year 2014: VW Golf leads, Toyota Corolla up to #5

Israel Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla takes the lead

Italy Full Year 2014: Podium 100% Fiat for the 2nd time in 15 years

Japan Full Year 2014: Kei cars surge, Daihatsu Tanto outsells Toyota Aqua

Japan Full Year 2014: Now with exclusive Top 189 All-local models

Jordan Full Year 2014: Hyundai Elantra best-seller

Kazakhstan Full Year 2014: Lada Granta catches up on Priora

Kenya Full Year 2014: Toyota Land Cruiser 70 king of the savannah

Kiribati Full Year 2014: Toyota Hiace holds 55% market share

Kuwait Full Year 2014: Toyota Prado dominates Hilux and Camry

Laos Full Year 2014: Chery QQ best-seller, Chinese above 30% share

Latvia Full Year 2014: Skoda Yeti and Nissan Qashqai take the lead

Lebanon Full Year 2014: Kia Picanto most popular

Lesotho Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux and Etios on top

Liechtenstein Full Year 2014: Seat Alhambra leaps up to 2nd place

Lithuania Full Year 2014: Fiat 500 shoots up to 11.2% share

Luxembourg Full Year 2014: VW Golf and Audi A3 on top

Madagascar Full Year 2014: Toyota edges past Nissan, Hawtai lands

Malawi Full Year 2014: Toyota above 50%, Hilux on top

Malaysia Full Year 2014: Perodua leads in record year

Martinique (France) Full Year 2014: Peugeot leads, Dacia on podium

Mauritius Full Year 2014: Toyota holds Nissan and Kia off

Mexico Full Year 2014: Chevrolet Aveo leads, VW Vento shines, Hyundai lands

Moldova Full Year 2014: Dacia Logan leads, Hyundai Santa Fe lands at #5

Monaco (brands) Full Year 2014: Mercedes #1, Porsche remains third

Monaco (models) Full Year 2014: Mini leads, Porsche 911 on podium

Montenegro Full Year 2014: Dacia Sandero the favourite

Morocco Full Year 2014: Dacia monopolises Top 4!

Myanmar Full Year 2014: Suzuki Super Carry and Toyota Hiace estimated best-sellers

Namibia Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux #1 in market up 32%

Netherlands Full Year 2014: VW Golf #1 for third time ever

New Caledonia (France) Full Year 2014: Ford Ranger cements lead

New Zealand Full Year 2014: Ford Ranger ends 32 years of Toyota Hilux as #1 ute

Nigeria Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla and Hyundai Accent on top

Northern Ireland (UK) Full Year 2014: Renault Captur in Top 10

Norway Full Year 2014: Tesla Model S doubles sales to land in Top 5

Oman Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux resists Land Cruiser Pick-up assault

Pakistan Full Year 2014: New generation keeps Toyota Corolla #1

Panama Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux leads, Yaris shoots up to #2

Papua New Guinea 2014: Toyota Land Cruiser 70 reigns

Paraguay Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux stays #1, Hyundai i10 on podium

Peru Full Year 2014: Toyota Yaris stays on top in market down 8%

Philippines Full Year 2014: Toyota leads in record market up 27%

Poland Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia reclaims top spot

Portugal Full Year 2014: Renault Clio resists VW Golf is market up 35%

Puerto Rico (USA) Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla leads, Mitsubishi Mirage #3

Réunion (France) Full Year 2014: Peugeot and its 208 dominate

Qatar Full Year 2014: Toyota Land Cruiser leads, Nissan Patrol up 81%

Quebec (Canada) Full Year 2014: Honda Civic reclaims #1 spot off Hyundai Elantra

Republic of Macedonia Full Year 2014: VW Golf resists Skoda Rapid attack

Romania Full Year 2014: Dacia Logan celebrates one decade on top

Russia Full Year 2014: Lada Granta survives foreign push

Russia Full Year 2014: Now with the Top 434 All-models ranking

Samoa Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux and Hiace dominate

San Marino Full Year 2014: Volkswagen reclaims #1 spot off Audi

Saudi Arabia Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux #1, Yaris in Top 5

Scotland (UK) Full Year 2014: Ford Fiesta ends 6-year Vauxhall Corsa domination

Serbia Full Year 2014: Skoda Fabia overtakes Fiat 500L

Singapore Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla new best-seller

Slovakia Full Year 2014: Skoda Octavia holds off Fabia and Rapid for #1

Slovenia Full Year 2014: Renault Clio leads, Captur up to #5

Solomon Islands Full Year 2014: Toyota and Isuzu in the lead

South Africa Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux #1, Ford Ranger and Toyota Corolla shine

South Korea Full Year 2014: Hyundai Sonata reclaims leadership

Spain Full Year 2014: First ever year of reign for the Seat Leon

Swaziland Full Year 2014: Isuzu KB frankly outsells Toyota Hilux for #1

Sweden Full Year 2014: Volvo V70 celebrates 18 consecutive years on top

Switzerland Full Year 2014: VW Golf and Skoda Octavia ultra-dominant

Syria Full Year 2014: Hyundai Elantra tops market in crisis

Tahiti (France) Full Year 2014: Ford Ranger and Dacia Duster edge past Toyota Hilux

Taiwan Full Year 2014: Toyota Corolla leads, Luxgen shines

Tanzania Full Year 2014: Pickups and Toyota Hilux rule

Thailand Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux leads, Yaris on podium

Tonga Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux holds just under 40% of tiny market

Tunisia Full Year 2014: Citroen #1 for the first time, Symbol best-seller

Turkey Full Year 2014: Renault Fluence edges Fiat Linea out

Uganda Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux and Land Cruiser lead

UK Full Year 2014: Market up 9% to highest level in a decade

UK Full Year 2014: Now with Top 365 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

UK Full Year 2014: Now with Pickup data

Ukraine Full Year 2014: Toyota and Geely on top, market down 54%

United Arab Emirates Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux overtakes Prado

Uruguay Full Year 2014: Chevrolet #1, Suzuki Celerio best-seller

Vanuatu Full Year 2014: Toyota holds 82.1% market share

Venezuela Full Year 2014: ZNA Rich leaps up to #1 in market down 76%

Vietnam Full Year 2014: Toyota Vios best-seller for the first time

Wales (UK) Full Year 2014: Ford Kuga leaps up to 5th place

Yemen Full Year 2014: Hilux leads in Toyota-ruled market

Zimbabwe Full Year 2014: Isuzu KB should be the favourite

See last year’s Full Year 2013 Reports for 108 markets here

Categories: Featured Category, World

Follow all my USA Coast to Coast 2014 Photo Reports here

September 20th, 2014 No comments

STRATEGY: Understanding the Indian car market

April 7th, 2014 13 comments

Datsun Go India March 2014. Picture courtesy of What Car? IndiaThe Datsun Go starts at US$5,340. Only in India is such low pricing possible at the moment.

Staying in India for a couple of days has enabled me to get a much better understanding of the Indian new car market and its dynamics which have very unique characteristics. In fact, not only is India very different from any other new car market in the world, but its logic pre-empts that of many future developing markets, at the centre of which most of Africa. With the main notion to remember being ‘bottom-up innovation’ to achieve even lower selling prices, understanding India is essential in today’s worldwide automotive scene.

1. Why India matters

Ever wondered why so many India-exclusive new cars were unveiled at the Delhi Auto Show in February compared to the relative small size of its new car market (2.5 million units in 2013 vs. 20.9 million for China)? That’s because on top of the enormous growth potential, making and selling cars in India requires a very different set of skills. And the manufacturers that are getting good at it are taking a decisive advantage into succeeding in tomorrow’s developing markets, because they will know how to make cars so cheap they can sell at a profit even in Africa – which is, believe it or not, the new China (a much more detailed analysis of this last point will be published soon).

To be successful in India, cars need a price tag so much lower than in most other markets, that new thinking is needed. An Indian trademarked way of innovating that is adapted to local conditions, constraints and revenue levels. The ‘old ‘way of creating low-cost was to engineer down from more sophisticated products by cutting cost through tried-and-tested platforms and economies of scale. The new way is to engineer up from scratch a product that is game-changingly cheaper with a mix of bare bones elements and latest tech features. Example: the $100 laptop. This process has been dubbed ‘frugal engineering‘ (achieving more with fewer resources) by Carlos Ghosn, or ‘bottom-up innovation’.

Datsun Go What Car March 2014bNo radio and CD player in the Datsun Go

2. Bottom-up innovation at play

Indian manufacturer Tata was the first to bring bottom-up innovation to the car industry with the Nano, ‘the cheapest car in the world’ at US$1,700 when unveiled in 2009. The Nano turned a lot of carmaking conventions on their heads. It uses a modular design that theoretically enables a knowledgeable mechanic to assemble the car in a suitable workshop. It also includes numerous lighter components, from simple door handles and bulbs to the transmission and engine parts, enabling a more energy efficient engine. The Nano is one of the shortest four-passenger cars on the market, yet it allows for ample interior space. The fact that the Nano didn’t succeed doesn’t question this trend, as we’ll see below.

These ‘ultra-low cost’ cars can end up being more user-friendly, if sophisticated. One case in point that stroke me: the new Datsun Go does not have a radio or CD player (even optional), only an aux-in port and USB charging point, which means you can only listen to music stored on a portable device. On one hand I can hear you say “no radio? blasphemy!” After all, even Tata kept it optional on the Nano. On the other hand, most cars manufactured over 5 years ago don’t have these functionalities (even premium ones!), making listening to your favourite music without burning it on a CD impossible. See what I mean? All in all, for the target market, the Go driving experience as far as music is concerned is potentially more user-friendly for a fraction of the cost.

But just how low are car prices in India?

Renault Duster India March 2014What Car India says the Renault Duster ‘doesn’t feel premium enough’ for the price. Wait what?

3. Low cost is premium is low cost

Car prices are on a drastically different scale in India:  they are not just a little cheaper, but in a different ball game altogether.

This strategy analysis continues below.

The rest of this content is for members only.
Log In Register

Full Year 2013 Reports: 108 markets now available!

March 31st, 2014 13 comments

Toyota Corolla World 2013The Toyota Corolla is the best-selling model in the world in 2013.

This article is the portal to all Full Year 2013 Reports, you can find below all updates already live. This list will be updated as new Reports get published. Enjoy!

World updates:

World Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla or Ford Focus #1? BestSellingCarsBlog has spoken

World Full Year 2013: Discover the #1 models in 160 countries

World Full Year 2013: Now with Top 25 best-selling brands

World Full Year 2013: Now with Top 20 biggest manufacturers

World Full Year 2013: Total sales now available for 143 countries

World Full Year 2013 – The 20 biggest cars markets: China, Indonesia, Australia and Argentina beat records

Big 3 worldwide markets:

China Full Year 2013: Wuling Hongguang and VW Lavida on top

China Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 10 best-selling LCVs

China Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 30 best-selling vehicles (PC+LCV)

USA Full Year 2013: Ford F-Series at best since 2006 in market up 8%

Europe Full Year 2013: VW Golf leads, Renault Clio on podium for first time in 7 years

Europe Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 353 best-selling models!

All markets in alphabetical order:

Algeria Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan #1 for first time, Peugeot 301 lands at world-best #2

Angola Full Year 2013: Hyundai i10 most popular

Argentina Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Classic #1, Renault Clio Mio on podium in record year

Australia Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla finally tops record market

Austria Full Year 2013: VW Golf, Polo & Tiguan on top, Hyundai #2 brand

Bahrain Full Year 2013: Toyota Prado dislodges Land Cruiser

Belarus Full Year 2013: VW Polo new best-seller, 2 Renaults on podium

Belgium (brands) Full Year 2013: Volkswagen resists Renault assault

Belgium (models) Full Year 2013: VW Golf and Renault Scenic on top

Belgium (lease cars) Full Year 2013: BMW 3 Series in pole position

Bolivia Full Year 2013: Chinese carmakers hold world-best 26% share!

Bosnia & Herzegovina Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia king

Brazil Full Year 2013: VW Gol distant leader, Chevrolet Onix edges Hyundai HB20 out by 13 units

Minas Gerais (Brazil) Full Year 2014: Fiat Uno in the lead

Brunei Full Year 2013: Toyota and Kia on top again

Bulgaria Full Year 2013: Dacia Dokker surprise leader

Canada Full Year 2013: Ford F-Series breaks all-time record in strongest market in 10 years

Chile Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Sail confirms top spot

China Full Year 2013: Wuling Hongguang and VW Lavida on top

China Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 10 best-selling LCVs

China Full Year 2013: Discover the Top 30 best-selling vehicles (PC+LCV)

Colombia Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Sail takes the lead

Croatia Full Year 2013: VW Golf new leader

Cyprus Full Year 2013: Ford Fiesta keeps lead in market down 32%

Czech Republic Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia leads, Skoda Rapid lands at #3

Denmark Full Year 2013: VW Up confirms supremacy in record-breaking year

Ecuador Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Sail leads, Kia Rio Stylus lands

Egypt Full Year 2013: Geely Emgrand 7 jumps onto podium!

England (UK) Full Year 2013: Ford Fiesta leads, BMW 1 Series up to #8

Estonia Full Year 2013: Honda CR-V snaps up top spot

Europe Full Year 2013: VW Golf leads, Renault Clio on podium for first time in 7 years

Finland Full Year 2013: VW Golf back in charge

France Full Year 2013: Renault Clio IV new leader, Captur and 2008 superstars

France LCV Full Year 2013: Renault Kangoo and Master on top

Germany Full Year 2013: Golf marks 38 years at #1, Audi A3 and Skoda Octavia reach new heights

Germany Private Sales Full Year 2013: VW monopolises podium, Mercedes A-Class up 67%

Greece Full Year 2013: Toyota Yaris reclaims lead

Guadeloupe (France) Full Year 2013: Renault overtakes Peugeot for #1 spot

Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux down, Corolla and Prado up

Hong Kong (China) Full Year 2013: Toyota Hiace dominates

Hungary Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia reclaims top spot

Iceland Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia back in pole position

India Full Year 2013: Maruti Alto #1, Swift, DZire and Wagon R break records

Indonesia Full Year 2013: Toyota Avanza tops new record market

Iran 2013-2014: Discover the Top 90 best-selling imports

Iran Full Year 1392: Now with Top 20 most produced models!

Ireland Full Year 2013: VW Golf best-seller for the first time!

Israel Full Year 2013: Kia Picanto leads ranking for the first time

Italy Full Year 2013: Fiat Panda leads, Fiat 500L lands at #5, Top 5 All-Italian for 1st time in 30 years

Ivory Coast Full Year 2013: Hyundai ix35 triumphs

Japan Full Year 2013: Toyota Aqua celebrates first year in pole position

Japan Full Year 2013: Now available with Top 165 All-local models ranking!

Japan Kei cars Full Year 2013: Honda N-BOX takes control

Japan Imports Full Year 2013: VW Golf #1, BMW 3 Series up 69% to 2nd place

Kazakhstan Full Year 2013: Lada Priora tops world’s fastest-growing market

Kenya Full Year 2013: Toyota and Mitsubishi dominate

Kuwait Full Year 2013: Toyota Prado leads, up to record 10.3% market share

Latvia Full Year 2013: VW Golf and Ford Focus on top

Lithuania Full Year 2013: Fiat 500 remains best-seller, or is it?

Luxembourg Full Year 2013: 3 premium Germans in Top 10

FYR of Macedonia Full Year 2013: VW Golf and Ford Fiesta win

Malawi Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux official leader with 22% share

Malaysia Full Year 2013: Perodua tops, Nissan and Honda jump

Mexico Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Aveo and VW Clasico on top

Mexico Full Year 2013: Now with All-models ranking for the first time

Moldova Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan and Duster on top

Monaco (brands) Full Year 2013: Audi and Mercedes reign supreme

Monaco (models) Full Year 2013: Audi A4 passes Mini to rank #1

Morocco Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan, Dokker and Sandero in Top 4

Mozambique Full Year 2013: Only 13% of imported cars are new

Netherlands Full Year 2013: VW Up snaps up biggest market so far

Netherlands (lease cars) Full Year 2013: Renault Megane Estate #1

New Caledonia (France) Full Year 2013: Ford Ranger and Toyota Hilux dominate

New Zealand Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla marks 6 years at #1 in strongest market since 1984

Nigeria Full Year 2013: Toyota at 37% share, Kia up 27%, Chinese hold 12% of market

Northern Ireland (UK) Full Year 2013: Ford Fiesta leads, VW Golf on podium

Norway Full Year 2013: VW Golf leads, Nissan Leaf on podium in eventful year

Oman Full Year 2013: Toyota Land Cruiser PU/HT at world-best #2

Pakistan Full Year 2013: Suzuki Mehran catches up to Toyota Corolla

Panama Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux and Hyundai Accent on top

Paraguay Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux and Kia Rio dominate

Peru Full Year 2013: New gen pushes Toyota Yaris above Hilux

Philippines Full Year 2013: Toyota and Mitsubishi top record market

Poland Full Year 2013: Skoda Fabia edges past Octavia for the first time in 5 years

Portugal Full Year 2013: Renault Clio takes the lead for the first time in 5 years

Puerto Rico (USA) Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla takes the lead

Qatar Full Year 2013: Toyota Land Cruiser and Lexus LX shine

Reunion (France) Full Year 2013: Peugeot most popular

Romania Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan and Duster dominate

Russia Full Year 2013: Lada Granta celebrates first year at #1

San Marino Full Year 2013: Audi edges past Volkswagen to rank #1

Saudi Arabia Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla catches up on Hilux

Scotland (UK) Full Year 2013: Close call for the Vauxhall Corsa

Senegal Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux leads, Lifan in Top 10

Serbia Full Year 2013: Locally produced Fiat 500L grabs top spot

Singapore Full Year 2013: Mercedes leads for the first time

Slovakia Full Year 2013: Podium 100% Skoda

Slovenia Full Year 2013: Renault Clio up 36%, Kia Cee’d on podium

South Africa Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux takes the lead, Etios up to #4

South Korea Full Year 2013: Hyundai Avante’s slim win over Kia Morning

Spain Full Year 2013: Seat Ibiza marks 10 years in the lead

Sweden Full Year 2013: Volvo V70 #1 again, V40 lands at #5, still lukewarm

Switzerland Full Year 2013: VW Golf leads, BMW 3 Series up 53% to #4

Taiwan Full Year 2013: Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V storm into Top 5

Thailand (Pick-ups) Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux #1, Ford Ranger up 43%

Turkey Full Year 2013: Fiat Linea #1 again, Renault Symbol up 70% to #2

Tunisia Full Year 2013: Renault Symbol #1, Peugeot 301 lands at #5

Uganda Full Year 2013: Toyota reigns supreme at 45% share

UK Full Year 2013: Ford Fiesta marks 10 years at #1, BMW places two models in Top 10 for 1st time

Ukraine Full Year 2013: ZAZ Sens new leader, Geely CK up to #3

Ukraine (brands) Full Year 2013: Hyundai #1, Geely up 36% to #3

United Arab Emirates Full Year 2013: Toyota Prado edges Hilux out

Uruguay (brands) Full Year 2013: One in 4 new cars is Chinese!

Uruguay Full Year 2013: Now with Top 10 best-selling models

USA Full Year 2013: Ford F-Series at best since 2006 in market up 8%

Venezuela Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Aveo and Mitsubishi Lancer on top

Vietnam Full Year 2013: Toyota monopolises Top 5, Fortuner holds onto top spot

Wales (UK) Full Year 2013: Ford Fiesta and Suzuki Alto over-perform

Categories: Featured Category, World

best selling cars blog Video Introduction

June 25th, 2012 66 comments


Check out my new BestSellingCarsBlog Introduction video, it goes through the main functionalities of the site and tells you a little bit about why and how I created BestSellingCarsBlog. A huge thank you to my friend David Curry and Con Filippidis for producing this video.

— There is also the ‘written’ version of the video below —

Bonjour and welcome to BestSellingCarsBlog!

I’m Matt, originally from France and now based in Sydney, Australia. Studying and analysing car sales figures around the world is something I have done meticulously for the last 25 years. I founded BestSellingCarsBlog in October 2010 in order to set up one destination that houses as much car sales data as possible, currently the tally stands at 177 countries and territories. This blog features almost all the sales data I have managed to get my hands on during my “car-data-nerd” life. If you want to share more data or need more info, contact me at matt@bestsellingcarsblog.com

BestSellingCarsBlog is only one part of what I do in the automotive sector, I am also available for short-term projects or ongoing consultancy, typically in the following areas:

–       Radio and TV commentary

–       In-depth analysis of any of the countries covered by the blog

–       Industry forecasting

–       Communication and sponsorship strategy

–       Digital marketing strategy

Also, if you need some additional information, sales-related editorial for your website or magazine, or a point of view about the car sales situation in any specific country on the planet, you can contact me at matt@bestsellingcarsblog.com

Some of my past and current work aside from BestSellingCarsBlog can be seen below.

I have been writing a weekly column called ‘Best Selling Cars Around The Globe’ on the US website The Truth About Cars since February 2011. You can check out the list of all my articles here: Matt’s articles for The Truth About Cars.

 

In November 2012 I have started collaborating with L’Automobile Magazine, the best-selling car magazine in French language, starting with an article about the Chinese carmakers present in New Caledonia. Check out www.automobile-magazine.fr.

Starting in November 2012 as well, BestSellingCarsBlog now collaborates with Auto India, India’s oldest and best-selling car magazine, featuring sales figures in the “India’s best-sellers” section of the magazine.

 

I was recently interviewed by Alex Helmick from World Radio Switzerland about the evolution of the new car market there. You can listen to the September 2012 interview here and the October 2012 interview here and the January 2013 interview here.

Categories: Featured Category