Ireland August 2017: Peugeot 3008 and Skoda Kodiaq impress

The Peugeot 3008 is up to #5 in Ireland in August. 

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After the bi-annual July surge due to new license plates, the Irish new car market falls back down 21% year-on-year to 5.754 units in August, pulling the year-to-date total down 10% to 124.711. In spite of sales tumbling down 38% year-on-year, Volkswagen remains the best-selling manufacturer at 10.4% share, only 9 units above Toyota (-25%) at 10.3%. Ford (-6%) and Skoda (-4%) resist much better while Peugeot, surging up 52%, is the only manufacturer in positive in the Top 15. Nissan (-29%), Seat (-42%), Hyundai (-44%) and BMW (-65%) suffer particularly harsh declines. Subaru (+40%), Mini (+79%) and Citroen (+181%) are among the rare gainers in the market this month.

The Skoda Kodiaq breaks into the Irish Top 10 for its 4th month in market.

Model-wise, it’s a photo-finish for August, with the Skoda Octavia (-28%) taking the lead for just one unit ahead of the VW Golf (-39%) and five ahead of the Hyundai Tucson (-40%). The VW Tiguan is up 5 spots on July but down 26% year-on-year to #4 while the Peugeot 3008 is up 10-fold on August 2016 and 14 ranks on last month to a stunning fifth place with 2.4% share. For its fourth month in market, the Skoda Kodiaq brilliantly breaks into the Irish Top 10 at #8 with 2.3% share. Year-to-date, the Hyundai Tucson remains sovereign despite a 33$ drop, distancing the VW Golf (-13%), Nissan Qashqai (-8%), Skoda Octavia (-16%) and Ford Focus (-21%).

Previous post: Photo Report: Driving through Western Ireland and the Connemara

Previous month: Ireland July 2017: VW Golf leads, Megane and Tiguan impress

One year ago: Ireland August 2016: VW & Golf lead, Hyundai and Seat shine

Full August 2017 Top 33 All-brands and Top 210 All-models below.

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Photo Report: Driving through Western Ireland and the Connemara

Irish green Renault Kadjar + Fluence near the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland – August 2017

I was lucky enough to be able to drive through part of the western coast of Ireland for five days in mid-August, and as is always the case when actually finding oneself in the actual country, I learnt details that don’t blatantly appear in the monthly sales charts – the objective of such explorations. During that quick week, we drove from Dublin to Galway, Clifden, Letterfrack, the Conemarra National Park, Westport then further south to the Cliffs of Moher and the Aran Islands, then back to Dublin. All-in-all, we had perhaps 1.5 day of sun, the rest being drenched in typical Irish rain… Not to worry, the car parc was still there to be observed in detail.

Kaitlin, our rental Peugeot 208 in Clifden, Ireland – August 2017   Our Ireland itinerary

Our vehicle for this Irish adventure was a rental Irish red Peugeot 208, with its odo indicating 22.435 miles at pickup – impossible for the life of me to return this to kilometres – and 23.137 at drop-off, or 702 miles / 1.130 km in five days. After Ivanhoe the Haval H8 and Joey the Toyota Hilux, our 208 was baptised Kaitlin, a name we tried to pick in accordance to our surroundings. Kaitlin was easy to drive – I had anticipated a bit of headache due to the right-hand drive manual nature of the car, but all went well. Nothing amazing, nothing horrendous, but the car distinctly lacked oomph when accelerating. A pushy experience all-in-all.

2 x Hyundai Tucson in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017

There were a lot of sales peculiarities I had been wanting to verify in Ireland, the main one being the sudden as much as implacable success of the Hyundai Tucson, #1 in the country in 2016 and so far in 2017. If in Dublin its domination was far from obvious, as soon as we hit the countryside it was a proper avalanche of Tucson that unfolded on the tiny roads and city streets. Seeing two or even three Tucsons parked next to each other was a frequent occurrence. However I noticed a lot of Tucsons with “Europcar” stickers on the back window, prompting me to wonder whether this smashing success has in fact a lot to do with rentals. Hyundai Ireland hasn’t responded to my inquiry on the matter. My estimation is around 1/3 of Tucsons I saw were rentals.

Nissan Qashqai in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017

Another nameplate I could spot at every street corner in Ireland is the Nissan Qashqai. Although it never ranked #1 here in the annual sales charts – #3 in 2012, #2 in 2013, #2 in 2014 and #3 in 2015 – when travelling to this part of Ireland it does look like this is the car that has dominated the Irish sales charts for the past five years. The Ford Focus, #1 from 2001 to 2012 except in 2010, is certainly present but not to the extent its domination would have let us to believe. The VW Golf for example, #1 from 2013 to 2015, makes itself noticed a lot more but is still below the Qashqai.

Renault Kadjar in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017
Renault Megane Sedan and 2 x Nissan Qashqai near the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland – August 2017

One vehicle I saw a lot more than I expected in Ireland is the Renault Kadjar, a lot more frequent than at home in France. It ranked #13 in 2016 and is #20 so far in 2017, so the only explanation I can find for this overwhelming presence is, here too, success with rental companies. Although the Renault brand has been popular for a long time in Ireland. There is a very strong heritage of Renault Fluence here, and its successor, the Renault Megane Sedan, has kick-started its career with a bang.

VW Golf in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017 

Hyundai i30 in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017Hyundai i40 near the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland – August 2017Seat Toledo in Clifden, Ireland – August 2017

Which leads me to one very particular observation about the Irish car park: this country is still very fond of the sedans that are struggling to sell at all all over the rest of Western Europe: on top of the Megane Sedan – not even available in France, very popular sedans in Ireland include the Toyota Avensis (a very strong heritage of this nameplate), Corolla, Hyundai i40, Seat Toledo and VW Passat. Remaining on Hyundai for an instant, the all-new i30 is already well represented all around the area we traversed, adding to the success of the Tucson.

Skoda Octavia and Fabia near the Cliffs of Moher, Ireland – August 2017 Skoda Citigo in Roundstone, Ireland – August 2017 

In terms of brands, the main striking observation is the success of Skoda, seemingly far more represented than its 6th place in 2017 would suggest. The Skoda Octavia (#5 so far in 2017) is everywhere, as is the Fabia, in Dublin a large number of taxis are the Skoda Superb and the Skoda Citigo is the most frequent of the three VW-Group minibars, more so than the VW Up or Seat Mii. Interestingly, I did not see many older Skodas, which would either indicate that this success is recent, or that the cars don’t survive long. The other brand that surprised me is Dacia. The facelifted Sandero ranked 11th in July and it shows: they are in every village, and the Duster is also very frequent.

Toyota C-HR in Clifden, Ireland – August 2017

Nissan Micra in Ireland – August 2017  

Among recent launches, the Toyota C-HR is present, as well as the new Nissan Micra and, to a much lesser extent, the Peugeot 3008. The Suzuki Vitara and Kia Sorento also appeared surprisingly frequently.

Toyota Avensis on Inishmore, Aran Islands – August 2017 

Away on Inishmore, one of the three Aran Islands that you cannot reach by car, only locals are allowed their cars and the Aran car park is like a travel through time with older generations of Toyota Avensis, VW Passat, Opel Vectra and Skoda Octavia. Only a handful of cars sported the 2013 and beyond bi-annual license plate system.

I hope you enjoyed this quick insight into the Irish car park, please feel free to ask me anything in the comments section.

Ireland July 2017: VW Golf leads, Megane and Tiguan impress

The Renault Megane is up 4-fold on July 2016 in Ireland.

* See the Top 33 All-brands and Top 230 All-models by clicking on the title *

Ireland has adopted a bi-annual licence plate change like the UK and it happens in July. This year, sales for the month are down 7% year-on-year to 27.737, leading to a year-to-date tally down 9% on the same period in 2016 to 118.914 units. Volkswagen triumphs in the brands ranking with deliveries up 21% to 10.8% share just as the next four best-seller post double-digit drops: Toyota (-12%), Hyundai (-32%), Ford (-23%) and Nissan (-23%). Renault (-0.2%) is up 10 spots on June to #6, but we have to go beyond the Top 10 to find additional carmakers sporting double-digit gains, such as Peugeot (+15%), Mercedes (+29%), Suzuki (+32%), Fiat (+34%), Seat (+36%), Land Rover (+39%), Mini (+65%), Alfa Romeo (+86%) and Porsche (+120%).

The VW Golf (+39%) takes the lead of the models ranking but the Hyundai Tucson (-42% in July) remains by far the 2017 best-seller at 3.9% share vs. 3.2% for the Golf. The Ford Focus (-16%), Nissan Qashqai (-29%) and Toyota Yaris (-2%) round up the Top 5, with the Renault Megane (+293%) and VW Tiguan (+78%) posting the largest year-on-year gains in the Top 10. Further down, the Nissan Micra (+114%) and Peugeot 3008 (+587%) make themselves noticed thanks to their new generations. Among recent launches (<12 months), the Toyota C-HR is in the lead at #16, ahead of the Skoda Kodiaq (#29), Seat Ateca (#42) and Opel Crossland X (#69).

Previous month: Ireland June 2017: Fleet push BMW up to #1 in reduced market

One year ago: Ireland July 2016: Hyundai now best-selling brand year-to-date

Full July 2017 Top 33 All-brands and Top 230 All-models below.

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Ireland June 2017: Fleets push BMW up to #1 in reduced market

Surprise: the BMW 5 Series is the best-selling nameplate in Ireland this month. 

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For the past couple of years, Ireland has functioned on a bi-annual license plate change like the UK, in January and July. June therefore has become one of the weakest months of the year. June 2017 figures are down a further 14% to a meagre 1.395 units, with the year-to-date total down 10% to 91.180 sales. Most probably due to a batch of fleet car deliveries, BMW surges up almost 5-fold on June 2016 to land at a very unusual pole position in the brands ranking with a disproportionate 21.5% market share. It is followed by Volkswagen at 11.8% (-16%), Toyota at 9.5% (-58%), Skoda at 6.6% (+31%) and Dacia at 5.9% (+122%). Peugeot (+33%), Opel (+65%) and Seat (+86%) are also in solid shape. Logically, the BMW 5 Series (10.3% share) and X1 (4.9%) dominate the models ranking, distancing the VW Golf (-7%), Dacia Sandero (+173%), BMW 4 Series (+925%), Toyota Yaris (-58%) and BMW 1 Series (+775%). The YTD leader, the Hyundai Tucson, is down 59% to #13.

Previous month: Ireland May 2017: VW Polo leads, Peugeot 3008 up to #4

One year ago: Ireland June 2016: Toyota monopolises podium in reduced market

Full June 2017 Top 30 All-brands and Top 170 All-models below.

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Ireland May 2017: VW Polo leads, Peugeot 3008 up to #4

The Peugeot 3008 is up 9-fold to #4 in Ireland this month.

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The Irish new car market is down a disappointing 8% year-on-year in May to 5.989 registrations, bringing the year-to-date tally down 10% to 89.787 units. Knocked down to #3 over the Full year 2016, Volkswagen reclaims the brand’s top spot this year despite sales down 16%. In May, the German manufacturer even sells double any other brand in market at 15.4% share, down just 1% on May 2016. It is followed by Hyundai (-6%), Toyota (-18%) and Skoda (-10%). Only three manufacturers in the Top 10 manage to gain ground year-on-year: Kia (+3%), Opel (+9%) and most strikingly Peugeot (+81%). Further down, Dacia (+24%), Fiat (+43%), Honda (+125%) and Seat (+178%) also impress.

The Skoda Kodiaq breaks into the Irish Top 20. Picture autobild.de

Model-wise, Volkswagen justifies its domination by placing the Polo (+44%) and Golf (-30%) in the May lead. Like in 2016 though, the year-to-date best-seller is the Hyundai Tucson – despite sales down 30% on the same period in 2016, followed by the Nissan Qashqai (+0.1%) and the Skoda Octavia (-15%). The performer of the month is without contest the Peugeot 3008, up 9-fold on May 2016 thanks to the new model and landing in 4th place overall. The Dacia Sandero, up 62% to #8, BMW 5 Series up 23% to #10, Nissan Micra up 223% to #12 and Hyundai i30 up 93% to #14 also post strong scores this month. The most popular recent launch is the Skoda Kodiaq shooting up to #16.

Previous post: Ireland February 2017: Toyota C-HR up to 6th place in market down 21%

One year ago: Ireland May 2016: Volkswagen and Golf reclaim top spots

Full May 2017 Top 33 All-brands and Top 202 All-models below.

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Ireland February 2017: Toyota C-HR up to 6th place in market down 21%

The Toyota C-HR is up to 6th place in February in Ireland. 

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Accentuating a trend we saw in January, the Irish new car market is down by a painful 21% year-on-year in February to 17.083, pulling the year-to-date total down 9% to 56.054. The main explanation for this downwards spiral seems to be the unusual influx of used cars coming from the UK market following the British pound’s sharp decline after the Brexit vote. This month, Nissan is the best-selling manufacturer despite sales down 6%, distancing Volkswagen (-32%), Toyota (-18%), Hyundai (-30%) and Skoda (-6%). In fact, only Mercedes (+94%) and Audi (+0.2%) post a year-on-year gain inside the Top 10. Model-wise, the Nissan Qashqai (-7%), Skoda Octavia (-21%), Hyundai Tucson (-51%), Kia Sportage (-17%) and VW Golf (-41%) lead the way but all post declines, while the hero of the month is the Toyota C-HR up 19 spots on January to land at #6. Granted, the C-HR had already topped the Irish market in both November and December last year, but these are months with almost non-exostent sales in Ireland. This month’s 6th place is a better performance as a result.

Previous month: Ireland January 2017: Tucson leads, Mégane up, market down

One year ago:  Ireland January-February 2016: Tucson leads, pushes Hyundai to #1

Full February 2017 Top 30 All-brands and Top 215 All-models below.

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Ireland January 2017: Tucson leads, Mégane up, market down

Irish Renault Mégane sales are up 17-fold year-on-year in January. 

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Ireland is one of the rare European market to see its new car registrations decline year-on-year in January at -1.9% to 38.993 units. Part of the explanation for this drop is the import of close to 7.000 used cars – double the amount a year ago, a surge due to the British pound’s sharp decline after the Brexit vote according to Automotive News. Hyundai (-9%) ends the month in pole position above Toyota (-8%), Ford (+0.1%) and Volkswagen (+0.1%). Nissan (+6%), Renault (+13%), Skoda (+4%), Opel (+23%) and Mercedes (+71%) also beat the market inside the Top 10 while beyond, Seat (+19%), Suzuki (+23%), Subaru (+56%), Jaguar (+84%) and Alfa Romeo (+150%) post the largest gains. Model-wise, the Hyundai Tucson confirms the pole position it snapped over the FY2016 despite deliveries down 24% year-on-year, followed this time by the Ford Focus (-4%), Fiesta (+11%) and Nissan Qashqai (+32%). The VW Golf, #2 in FY2016, is relegated to #5. The Kia Sportage jumps 55% to #10, the Renault Megane surges 1645% to #10 thanks to the new generation, the VW Tiguan is up 102% to #16 and the Mercedes E-Class up 515% to #18. The Toyota C-HR, #1 in low-volume November and December, falls to #25 in January, followed in the recent launch ranking by the Seat Ateca (#55), Jaguar F-Pace (#69) and Hyundai Ioniq (#81).

Previous post: Ireland Full Year 2016: Hyundai Tucson signs historic win

One year ago: Ireland January-February 2016: Tucson leads, pushes Hyundai to #1

Full January 2017 Top 32 All-brands and Top 220 All-models below.

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Ireland Full Year 2016: Hyundai Tucson signs historic win

Hyundai Tucson Ireland 2016The Hyundai Tucson is the first Korean model to top the annual Irish sales. 

* See the Top 35 All-brands and Top 275 All-models by clicking on the title *

Check out 43 years worth of Irish Historical Data here

In its fourth year of bi-annual license plate system, the Irish new car market shoots up 17% to 146.603, with a record 39.722 sales in January (+33%) and 29.683 in July (+8%). In other words 47% of annual sales are registered during the two months of license plate change. Thanks to sales up 18% year-on-year, Toyota takes the lead of the models ranking with 15.530 units and 10.6% share but the fight was intense with Hyundai up 34% to 15.442, Volkswagen up 0.2% to 15.411 and Ford up 21% to 14.603. In fact, Toyota ranked as low as third by end-November, leapfrogging both Hyundai and Volkswagen to end the year in pole position. Skoda (+21%), Renault (+38%) and Kia (+22%) also impress, with Mercedes (+44%), Mazda (+35%), Volvo (+28%), Suzuki (+43%), Land Rover (+51%), Jaguar (+108%) and Ssangyong (+103%) posting some of the largest gains in market.

Toyota C-HR Ireland 2016The Toyota C-HR ranked #1 in November and December and pushed Toyota to #1. 

The models ranking is the theatre of a historical and unexpected win by the all-new Hyundai Tucson: after a launch in late 2015 assembling just 65 buyers, the Tucson dominates the Irish sales charts head and shoulders in 2016 with an astounding 7.425 sales. This is only the second time an Asian nameplate takes the lead of the Irish sales charts after the Toyota Corolla ranked #1 in 2004, and the very first time a Korean model does so. The Tucson has simply struck a chord with Irish car buyers, and also ranks third in Northern Ireland. For comparison, its predecessor the Hyundai ix35 ranked #8 in 2015. The VW Golf, leader for the past three years, is knocked down to #2 while the Ford Focus is also down one spot to #3. The Renault Kadjar surges to #13 for its first full year in market vs. #12 in France, with the Ford Kuga (+321%), Skoda Superb (+67%) and Nissan X-Trail (+133%) all posting spectacular gains. Among newcomers, the Toyota C-HR makes a splash by topping the overall charts both in November (73 sales) and December (157 sales 36.5% share) – granted, the two weakest months of the year – edging Toyota into the annual pole position. Could this be 2017’s leader?

Previous month: Ireland November 2016: Toyota C-HR lands in pole position

Previous year: Ireland Full Year 2015: VW Golf and Ford Focus in the lead

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

Full Year 2016 Top 35 All-brands and Top 275 All-models vs. Full Year 2015 figures below.

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Ireland November 2016: Toyota C-HR lands in pole position

toyota-c-hr-ireland-november-2016Toyota C-HR

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Towards the end of the year, the Irish new car market slows down to a standstill, with just 747 units in November, down 21% year-on-year. However the year-to-date tally is safe: up 17% on the same period in 2015 to 146.175 units. In the brands ranking, Toyota is up 3-fold to hold 16.5% of the market with 123 sales, and is now just 111 units below Volkswagen and 150 below Hyundai at 15.285 vs. 15.396. The battle for the title of most popular manufacturer in Ireland will remain open until the last days of December this year. Opel (+42%), Volvo (+42%) and Mini (+275%) impress. Model-wise, the small size of the November market triggers a big surprise: for its first month in market, the Toyota C-HR instantly takes the lead – granted, only 73 sales were enough – making Ireland the first country in the world to crown the Japanese manufacturer’s all-new small crossover. The Opel Zafira and VW Polo complete a surreal podium.

Previous month: Ireland October 2016: Volkswagen Group monopolises Top 5

One year ago: Ireland November 2015: Land Rover Discovery Sport tops market under 1.000 units

Full November 2016 Top 30 All-brands and Top 145 All-models below.

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Ireland October 2016: Volkswagen Group monopolises Top 5

audi-a3-ireland-october-2016-picture-courtesy-autoexpress-co-ukThe Audi A3 is up to #4 in Ireland in October 

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As is the tradition in Ireland, as we approach the end of the year the new car market slows down to an almost stop, awaiting the new license plates and model year in January. Sales are down 12% year-on-year in October to 2.245 units, but the year-to-date tally is still comfortably up 18% year-on-year to 145.435 units. Volkswagen follows the market at -12% to 12.2% share while Audi surges 62% to a fantastic 10.3% share, distancing Skoda (-3%), BMW (-37%) and Opel (-23%). Year-to-date, the market leader is still Hyundai (15.410) but with a paltry 9th place in October, its lead over Volkswagen (15.322) and Toyota (15.162) has reduced drastically. Models analysis will follow shortly.

Previous month: Ireland September 2016: Volkswagen monopolises podium

One year ago: Ireland October 2015: BMW shoots up to 10% market share

Full October 2016 Top 32 All-brands and Top 188 All-models below.

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