Russia February 2017: Kia Rio confirms top spot in market down 4.1%

The Kia Rio holds 6.6% of the Russian car market in February. 

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Even though the local manufacturers association AEB predicts a recovery in 2017, February sales are once again in negative territory at -4.1% to 106.658 registrations. Year-to-date, the market is now down 4.5% to 184.574 units. The Top 3 best-selling manufacturers buck the trend and all lodge positive results: Lada is up 5% to 18.8%  share, Kia is up 8% to 11.6% and Renault is up 9% to 9% share. Hyundai is in difficulty at -11% to 8.8% share in 4th place as are Toyota (-20%) and Nissan (-28%). Volkswagen posts the largest year-on-year gain in the Top 10 at +18% to hit #5, followed by UAZ up 13% to #9. Further down, notice Datsun up 20%, Lexus up 24%, Peugeot up 30%, Infiniti up 51% and Jaguar up 210%.

The Lada Vesta is on the Russian podium for the 2nd month running.

In the models aisle, the Kia Rio cements its newfound leadership with sales up 0.2% to 7.033 and 6,6% share, winning the month for the 2nd time in a row, the 5th time in the past 7 months and the 6th time ever after November 2014, August, September and October 2016 and January 2017. The Lada Granta (-17%) follows almost two percentage points of market share below at 4.9% and sees its hopes of reclaiming the annual lead it lost last year progressively fade away. Just below is the Lada Vesta, continuing its regular progression towards the top of the Russian sales charts. February marks its 2nd podium ranking in a row at a best-ever #3 with sales up 73% year-on-year. Although its progression is encouraging, the Vesta still lies 1.8 points of market share away from the pole position and Lada will have a tough time reclaiming the annual models lead in 2017.

Kia Sportage Russian sales are up 94% over the previous generation. 

2016 leader the Hyundai Solaris seems to have given up: down 62% to a paltry 7th place overall, for the first time outsold by its factory stablemate the Hyundai Creta which delivers its best market share since last September at 3.8% and continues to comfortably lead the SUV charts. The VW Polo is up 11% to #5, the Renault Sandero (+1%) and Logan (+2%) both reappear in the Russian Top 25 at #8 and #9 respectively, making it three Renaults in the Top 10 vs. only two Ladas. The other recent Lada launch, the XRAY equals the market share record it hit last month at 2% in 12th place but ranks 10th year-to-date, a spot it has not yet reached monthly. Other gainers inside the Top 25 include the Nissan X-Trail (+8%), Skoda Rapid (+20%), Kia Sportage (+94%) and VW Tiguan (+120%).

Previous month: Russia January 2017: Lada hits highest market share in over 5 years

One year ago (1): Russia February 2016: Hyundai Solaris leads YTD, market down 13%

One year ago (2): Russia February 2016: Discover the Top 275 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Full February 2017 Top 53 All-brands and Top 25 models below.


Russia January 2017: Lada hits highest market share in over 5 years

The Kia Rio is the best-selling vehicle in Russia in January.

* See the Top 50 All-brands and Top 25 models by clicking on the title *

Just as local manufacturers association AEB had predicted a recovery in 2017, January sales in Russia are down a further 5% year-on-year on an already very low base to just 77.916 registrations. This is the weakest month in seven years and only the fourth time in the past decade Russian registrations fall to five-digit figures with January 2010 (74.086 units), January 2016 (81.849) and February 2010 (91.922). Homegrown market leader Lada goes against the grain and posts a 5% year-on-year gain to hit 21% share, to be compared with 18.7% over the FY2016. After a slump to a lowest-ever 13% in December 2014, this is Lada’s highest market share at home since September 2011 (21.6%) and only its third time above 20% in over five years (20.3% in April 2016 and 20.2% in February 2014).

First podium ranking at home for the Lada Vesta. 

In second place, Kia soars 14% to 13.2% share while sister brand Hyundai drops 16% to 8.6%, distancing Renault (+4%), Volkswagen (+4%), Nissan (-6%) and Toyota (-37%). Skoda is up two spots on December to #8, Mercedes up five to #9 and GAZ up 25% year-on-year to #10. Further down, Ford (+0.5%), Audi (+3%), Mazda (+7%), Datsun (+11%), Peugeot (+16%), Citroen (+20%), Jeep (+21%), Infiniti (+27%), Cadillac (+63%), Chevrolet (+44%), Changan (+174%) and Jaguar (+294%) brave the adverse conditions and are some of the brands posting year-on-year gains in Russia in January.

The Skoda Rapid hits a record 7th place this month in Russia.

Model-wise, the Kia Rio surges 60% to take the lead for the 5th time ever (after November 2014, August, September and October 2016), dislodging the Lada Granta (-37%) while the 2016 leader, the Hyundai Solaris, freefalls 49% to #4. This means the Lada Vesta (+149%) leaps onto the monthly podium at home for the very first time. The Hyundai Creta is back up one spot to #5, holding onto the title of #1 SUV in Russia that has been its property ever since its launch last August. The Skoda Rapid lurches up 10 spots on last month to hit a record 7th place (previous best: #9 in May 2016), the Chevrolet Niva is up 41% to #9, the Lada 4×4 up 1% to #10 and the Lada XRAY up two spots on December to a best-ever #11. Notice also the Kia Sportage up 14 ranks to #12, the VW Tiguan up 12 to #16, Nissan X-Trail up 11 to #18, Lada Priora up 11 to #20 and Mitsubishi Outlander up 10 to #25.

The Lada XRAY ends January just 49 sales off a first Top 10 ranking at home.

Previous post: Russia Full Year 2016: Hyundai Solaris ends 45 years of Lada domination

One year ago (1): Russia January 2016: Market down 29%, Lada Vesta in Top 10

One year ago (2): Russia January 2016: Discover the Top 267 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

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Russia Full Year 2016: Hyundai Solaris ends 45 years of Lada domination

Hyundai Solaris Russia 2016. Picture courtesy The Hyundai Solaris is responsible for a once-in-a-generation market shift in Russia.

* Now updated with the Top 60 All-brands and Top 400 All-models – see title *

Check out 45 years worth of Russian Archived data here

After a catastrophic year in 2015 (-36%), the Russian new light vehicle market lodges a fourth consecutive year of decline but seems to have bottomed up in 2016 with a more digestible 11% drop – and even one month in positive (November). However at just 1.425.791 sales, Russian sales are still greatly handicapped by the economic crisis triggered by low oil prices and sanctions over the Ukrainian war, and have cancelled over a decade of growth and reach their lowest level in 12 years (since 2004). Local data provider the Association of European Businesses (AEB) believes the Russian market will end its skidding in 2017 and predicts a moderate 4% gain to 1.48 million units.

Lada Vesta Russia March 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruThe Vesta and X-RAY boost Lada’s market share up two percentage points to 18.7% in 2016. 

After years of seemingly unstoppable decline, homegrown market leader Lada posts the best performance of all seven best-selling manufacturers in Russia in 2016 thanks to the gearing up of the Vesta and X-RAY: down just 1% to see its market share up by almost two percentage points to 18.7%. A paradoxical situation given the historic event in the models ranking (see further down). Kia (-9%) and Hyundai (-10%) evolve slightly better than the market, resulting it similar market share, both above 10%. Renault (-3%), Toyota (-4%) and Volkswagen (-5%) fare much better and gain significant share. Nissan on the other hand crumbles down 23% to #7 overall.

Lexus RX Russia 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruLexus soars 19% year-on-year in a Russian market down 11%. Picture 

A dozen manufacturers do manage a year-on-year volume gain in 2015: for BMW (+0.1%), Skoda (+1%) and UAZ (+1%) the improvements are only marginal. LCV specialist GAZ jumps 9% despite an ailing lineup, Ford (+10%) is already bearing the fruits of its perseverance in Russia when fellow US carmaker Chevrolet freefalls 39%, Lifan is now the uncontested Chinese leader in Russia with deliveries up 15% to 17.460 vs. 4.758 for Chery, its immediate  follower and Lexus leaps 5 spots and 19% to tease BMW at 24.117 sales vs. 27.507. Jaguar has the XR and F-Pace to thank for its 113% surge in 2016.

kia-rio-russia-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Kia Rio topped the monthly Russian sales charts three times in 2016. 

A once-in-a-generation event has unfolded throughout the year in the Russian models ranking: for the first time since the creation of the Lada brand in 1970, a foreign nameplate is the annual best-seller in the country. As we predicted at the start of the year, the Hyundai Solaris brilliantly takes command of the Russian sales charts despite sales down 22% to 90.380 due in part to the discontinuation of its hatchback variant in the St Petersburg plant. Paradoxically, after topping the monthly charts for 7 months in 2015, the Solaris only needed to do so 4 times this year while the Lada Granta ranked first 5 times and the Kia Rio led the way for 3 months. All three models fit within less than 3.000 sales or 0.2% market share at year-end, with the Granta reclaiming the 2nd spot by the skin of its teeth thanks to two months spent at #1 at the end of the year.

hyundai-creta-russia-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruInstant blockbuster: the Hyundai Creta has been the #1 SUV in Russia ever since its August launch.

The main culprit for the Granta’s demise is to be found in 4th place: the all-new Lada Vesta, launched in November 2015, geared up all through the year to finish at a record 7.014 sales and 4.8% share in December. Over the Full Year, the Vesta adds up to 55.174 units and will be a serious candidate to the title of best-selling car in Russia in 2017. Below, the GAZ Gazelle (+11%), VW Polo (+5%), Renault Duster (+0.2%), Toyota RAV4 (+13%) and Chevrolet Niva (-5%) all improve their market shares, but the big movers are further down the annual ranking. Launched in August, the Hyundai Creta has been the #1 SUV in Russia since, as incredible as it sounds. It landed directly at #6, peaked at #4 and 5.058 sales in September and remained the booming segment’s leader all the way through to the end of the year, with its annual #16 ranking far from reflecting the extent of its performance.

renault-kaptur-russia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Renault Kaptur broke into the monthly Top 10 in December.

The Lada X-RAY is the second instant blockbuster SUV for 2016, launching in February, peaking at #13 in April and December and ending 2016 at #20 with just under 20.000 sales. Finally, the Renault Kaptur (larger than the Captur and based on a Duster platform) showed its bonnet in June to break into the Top 10 in December at #8 with 3.710 sales, only 292 less than the Creta and 186 below the Duster. The Creta, Kaptur and X-RAY could well all fit within the 2017 Top 10. Verdict in a year’s time. Other notable 2016 performers include the Hyundai Tucson up 931% to #36 for its first full year of sales, the Lexus RX up 149% to #39, the Mercedes GLE up 156% to #44, Lexus LX up 119% to #49, Kia Optima up 103% to #51, Lifan X50 up 105% to #43 and Mercedes GLC up 195% to #58. The Mercedes GLS (#67), Jaguar F-Pace (#128), Ravon R2 (#144), Ravon Nexia R3 (#162), FAW Oley (#184) and Zotye T600 (#191) are the other all-new nameplates to break into the Top 200.

Previous month: Russia November 2016: Lada outpaces market up for 1st time in 2 years

Previous year: Russia Full Year 2015: Hyundai Solaris teases Lada Granta in market down 36%

Two years ago: Russia Full Year 2014: Lada Granta survives foreign push

Full Year 2016 Top 60 All-brands and Top 400 All-models vs. Full Year 2015 data below.

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Russia November 2016: Lada outpaces market up for 1st time in 2 years

lada-vesta-russia-november-2016The Lada Vesta sells a record 5.661 units in Russia in November. 

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 55 All-brands and Top 250 All-models – see title *

Finally! The Russian new car market manages a slight year-on-year gain in November (+0.6%) after 22 consecutive months of decline – the last gain was seen in December 2014. It’s too early to tell whether the market has bottomed out indeed though and this is confirmed by Joerg Schreiber, Chairman of the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee: “It is good to be able to say such a thing after all, but it is far too early to read a trend turnaround into this. For now, all eyes are on December which has the potential to demonstrate that the market continues to move in the right direction”. Lest we forget the year-to-date tally is down 12% to 1.279.987 and that November 2016 is only the third month of year-on-year gains in the past 46.

jaguar-f-pace-russia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe F-Pace boosts Russian Jaguar sales up 265% this month. Pictures 

The Top 5 best-selling carmakers all outperform the market: homegrown behemoth Lada is in excellent shape this month with a 18% surge to 19.3% share, fast outpacing its immediate followers Hyundai (11.9%) and Kia (11.1%) both up 4%. Renault soars 13% to #4, distancing Toyota (+7%), Volkswagen (-8%) and Nissan, in great difficulty again at -18%. Chery (+10%), GAZ (+18%), Lexus (+22%), Porsche (+29%), Mini (+32%), Jeep (+38%), Subaru (+45%), Volkswagen Vans (+61%), Jaguar (+265%) and Smart (+352%) post the most spectacular sales improvements in November, while at the other end of the performance ladder Datsun (-16%), Suzuki (-20%), Land Rover (-23%), Mitsubishi (-30%), Audi (-32%), Peugeot (-34%), Volvo (-37%), Fiat (-41%), Dongfeng (-64%) and Geely (-80%) all fall sharply.

hyundai-creta-russia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruPerfect scoresheet for the Hyundai Creta in Russia: 4 months out of 4 as #1 SUV. 

In the space of two years, the Russian models ranking has made a sharp U-turn: a Lada leading it is now a rarity, something that used to be utterly unthinkable. In November, the Lada Granta reclaims the title of best-selling nameplate in the country for the first time since last May, but its meagre advantage over its rivals the Kia Rio (108 sales) and Hyundai Solaris (257) do nothing to change anything in the YTD ladder. After 11 months, the Solaris has a comfortable lead at 82.338 sales (-23%) vs. 79.633 for the Kia Rio (-10%) and 78.953 for the Granta (-27%). In other words, we are headed towards the first annual win for a foreign nameplate in Russia since the Lada marque was launched in 1970! This even though the Solaris hatchback was discontinued to give way to the Creta on the Hyundai St Petersburg factory… The culprit for the Granta’s dive: the Vesta, up 11% on October to post a new record monthly volume at 5.661.

nissan-qashqai-russia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Qashqai is up 44% but doesn’t prevent Nissan from freefalling 18% in November.

Four months on sale in Russia and four months as the best-selling SUV in the country: it’s a full strike for the Hyundai Creta ranking 5th overall with 4.814 deliveries and distancing the Renault Duster at 3.569 (-17%), the Chevrolet Niva at 2.664 (-11%) and the Renault Kaptur at 2.327, the other instant blockbuster in the country and the segment. With the Logan at #9 (-11%) and the Sandero at #10 (+17%), Renault even places four nameplates inside the November Top 12 vs. just three for Lada. Other great performing SUVs include the Lada XRAY at its best since last May at #16, the Nissan Qashqai up 44% to #18 and the Toyota Prado up 22% to #22.

Previous month: Russia October 2016: Kia Rio dominates again in market down just 3%

One year ago (1): Russia November 2015: Hyundai Solaris #1, Lada Vesta lands in Top 20

One year ago (2): Russia November 2015: Now with Top 306 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Full November 2016 Top 55 All-brands and Top 250 All-models below.

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Russia October 2016: Kia Rio dominates again in market down just 3%

kia-rio-russia-october-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Kia Rio now ranks #2 year-to-date above the Lada Granta.

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 55 All-brands and Top 260 All-models – see title *

It would appear scrappage schemes are finally triggering a bottoming out of the Russian new car market, at least this month with a thin 3% year-on-year decline to 126.658 registrations. The year-to-date tally remains in double-digit negative territory at -13% to 1.147.670 units. Once again the brands ranking shows a clear consolidation of sales around the best-selling brands, with 9 in the Top 10 posting year-on-year gains even though the market as a whole is in negative. Homegrown Lada posts a stunning performance with sales up 13% to 23.307, distancing Kia (+4%), Hyundai (+0.3%), Renault (+2%), Toyota surging up 16%, Volkswagen (+1%), GAZ (+15%), UAZ (+1%) and Skoda (+0.1%). Only Nissan (-17%) struggles. Outside the Top 10, the clear winner is Lexus shooting up 85% to #14 and 2.221 sales vs. #20 in FY2015. Notice also Jaguar up 156%, Mini up 28%, Isuzu up 79% and Smart up 67%. Reversely, Chery (-29%), Chevrolet (-30%), Audi (-31%), Volvo (-32%), Suzuki (-51%), Mitsubishi (-59%) and Fiat (-64%) and Geely (-84%) implode.

renault-kaptur-hyundai-creta-russia-october-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Renault Kaptur and Hyundai Creta are instant blockbusters in Russia.

Model-wise, the Kia Rio manages a third consecutive month in pole position, beating the market at -1% to 8.047 sales and overtaking the Lada Granta (-27% this month) for the 2nd place YTD. The Hyundai Solaris remains the best-seller YTD with 74.079 sales (-22%), despite dropping 21% in October due to the discontinuation of the hatchback variant to give way to the Creta on the St Petersburg factory. Talking of which, the Hyundai Creta is the best-selling SUV in the country for the third month running – in fact it has not yet ranked below that since it launched – thanks to 4.576 sales and 3.6%, this time outsold by the Lada Vesta (5.074) for 4th place. The Toyota RAV4 surges 146% to #11, the Renault Kaptur is stable at an outstanding 13th place, the Lada XRAY is up 3 spots on September to #19 and the VW Tiguan is up 54% to reappear inside the Top 25 for the first time since September 2015 at #23.

Lexus LX Russia October 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruThe Lexus LX is up 17-fold year-on-year in October in Russia. 

Adding LCVs to the original ranking brings the GAZ Gazelle at #4 overall with sales soaring 18% year-on-year and the antediluvian UAZ Bukhanka lands at #15 (+7%). Further down the ranking, notice the Kia Soul up 78% to #35, the Lexus RX up 643% to #44, Lexus LX up 1609% to #50 and the Lifan Solano up 88% to #64 and third best-selling Chinese nameplate in Russia below the Lifan X60 (#41) and X50 (#48). We welcome the Ravon Nexia R3 – the rebadge of the now-defunct Daewoo Nexia – at #125, the Infiniti QX30 at #195, the Genesis EQ900 at #201 and the Cadillac XT5 at #242.

Previous month: Russia September 2016: Hyundai Creta (#4) and Renault Kaptur (#13) stun

One year ago: Russia October 2015: Hyundai Solaris holds onto lead, market down 39%

Full October 2016 Top 55 All-brands and Top 260 All-models below.

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Russia September 2016: Creta (#4) and Kaptur (#13) stun

hyundai-creta-russia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Hyundai Creta climbs up to 4th place overall for its 2nd month on sale in Russia. 

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 55 All-brands and Top 257 All-models – see title *

Russian new car sales post a 21st consecutive month of year-on-year decline in September at -10.9% to 125.568 units, pulling the year-to-date tally down 14.4% to 1.020.932. Despite the doom-and-gloom overall market results, 10 of the Top 15 brands actually post year-on-year gains, with lower-volume brands suffering the most. Market leader Lada is up 5% to 22.837 sales and 18.2%, followed by Hyundai (-6%) and Kia (-17%). Renault (+1%), Toyota (+18%) and Volkswagen (+3%) are in positive as are GAZ (+2%), Skoda (+5%) and UAZ (+2%) in the Top 10. Below, Mercedes (+1%), BMW (+6%) but most impressively Lifan (+12%) and Lexus (+51%) shine. Subaru (+37%) and Jaguar (+107%) also impress further down the ranking. At the other end of the stick Ford (-27%), Audi (-39%), Datsun (-41%), Peugeot (-41%), Mitsubishi (-52%), Citroen (-54%), Chevrolet (-56%), Suzuki (-63%), Honda (-74%) and Geely (-85%) all implode.

renault-kaptur-russia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Renault Kaptur hits a record #13 spot in September.

In the models ranking, the Kia Rio posts a second consecutive month in pole position (and the third ever after November 2014) despite sales tumbling down 26% to 8.014 vs. -9% for the Granta in 2nd place at 7.815 units. The Hyundai Solaris, still #1 year-to-date, dives down 41%, partly because of the discontinuation of the hatchback variant – which accounted for roughly 20% of the nameplate’s sales in Russia – to give way in the Hyundai St Petersburg plant to the hero of the past two months: the Creta. Landing directly at #6 and #1 SUV last month, the Creta gains a further 45% and two spots to step up to #4 with 5.058 sales and 4% share. Based on BSCB calculations, this is the highest market share ever reached by a single SUV in Russia (previous best: 3.9% by the Renault Duster in May 2016) and the highest monthly volume so far this year (previous best: 5.298 by the Renault Duster in December 2015).

Nissan X-Trail Russia September 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruThe Nissan X-Trail soars 223% year-on-year in September. 

It’s a double-edged sword for Hyundai as this tremendous success could prevent the Solaris from finishing 2016 in the top spot. For now it leads with 66.602 sales (-22%) vs. 63.622 (-30%) for the Lada Granta and 62.278 (-13%) for the Kia Rio. While the VW Polo goes from strength to strength at +21% in 5th place, the Lada Vesta may already have reached its full potential: it drops two spots to #6 and 3.5% share, its lowest since last May after hitting 4.8% in July. Below, the Renault Duster (-2%) and Lada 4×4 (-8%) are unaffected by the Creta and gain market share by sliding down slower than the market.

infiniti-q30-russia-september-2016The Infiniti Q30 lands at #199 in Russia this month. 

The Toyota Camry (+36%) and RAV4 (+221%) round up the Top 10 with spectacular results and the second hero of the month is the Renault Kaptur back up 13 spots on August to a record-breaking 13th position with 2.218 sales. The Nissan X-Trail (+223%) and Qashqai (+73%) also impress. Further down, the Lifan X60 (#38) leads Chinese models ahead of the Lifan X50 (#48), Lifan Solano (#82) and Chery Tiggo (#90). Among recent launches (<12 months), the Hyundai Tucson (#47), Mercedes GLC (#58), Mercedes GLS (#59) and Jaguar F-Pace (#100) all fit within the Top 100 while we welcome the Infiniti Q30 into the Russian sales charts this month at #199.

Previous month: Russia August 2016: Kia Rio leads, Hyundai Creta instant #1 SUV

One year ago (1): Russia September 2015: Momentous shift to Korean models taking root

One year ago (2): Russia September 2015: Now with Top 318 All-models (BSCB exclusive)

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Russia August 2016: Kia Rio leads, Hyundai Creta instant #1 SUV

hyundai-creta-russia-august-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Hyundai Creta is an instant blockbuster in Russia, landing directly at #6.

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 55 All-brands and Top 257 All-models *

If you had hoped the Russian new car market would start to erode its race to the bottom this month, you were wrong: August is down another 18% year-on-year to just 113.749 units, pulling the year-to-date tally down 14.9% to 895.357 deliveries. Always on the lookout for a positive outlook to this dire situation Joerg Schreiber, Chairman of the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee, notices that this steep decline is accentuated by an August 2015 volume “propped up by currency fluctuations prompting customers to pull ahead the purchase of their car.” Also, Schreiber notes the market is now above the former historical low levels reached in 2009. August 2009 indeed was at 110.934 sales – only marginally lower – but the 2009 tally after 8 months was at a much higher 989.996. 2016 is therefore still slated to be one of the single weakest years of Russian new car sales so far this millennium.

kia-rio-russia-august-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ruThe Kia Rio is the best-selling vehicle in Russia in August.

It’s not bad news for all manufacturers though: seven of them in the Top 35 manage a year-on-year gain in August, starting with market leader Lada up 4% to 20.908 sales and 18.4% share. One main component of this revival is its new 2015-2016 lineup composed of the Vesta (#4) and X-RAY (#19) but this month the antediluvian 4×4 gains share (-14%) while the Priora actually gains volume (+1%). Lada’s performance is achieved despite the continuing cooling of the Granta (#3 in August at -39%) and the demise of the Kalina (-28%) and Largus (-56%). Hyundai also improves its market share with volumes down just 5% year-on-year to 11.906 and 10.5%. The Korean carmaker compensates the worrying loss of the Solaris (-41% but still #1 year-to-date) with one of the most successful new nameplate launches in Russia – no less: the Creta, spectacularly landing directly at #6 with 3.479 sales which means it has for its first month in market become the #1 SUV in the country, outselling the Renault Duster (3.473) and Toyota RAV4 (2.509)…

VW Polo Russia August 2016. Picture courtesy abw.byThe VW Polo is up 36% year-on-year in August… 

Paradoxically, Kia is the manufacturer losing the most ground in the Top 6 at -17% but it places the Rio as the best-selling model in Russia this month with 7.178 sales. It is only the second time the Rio is #1 after November 2014 when it broke the spell and became the first foreign model to lead the Russian sales charts since the creation of the Lada brand in 1970. Renault limits its fall to -7% thanks to good resistance from the Duster (-1%) and Sandero (-9%) and despite a weak Logan score (-40%) just as the all-new Kaptur drops out of the Top 25 (#28). Toyota drops even less at -4% and manages positive scores for its best-sellers Camry (+14%) and RAV4 (+6%) – both ranking inside the Top 10 – while the Prado (-1%) quietly breaks its Russian ranking record at #18 (#20 with LCVs), the nameplate’s third time inside the Top 20 in the past 12 months – and ever – after September and December 2015.

skoda-rapid-russia-august-2016-picture-courtesy-zr-ru …as is the Rapid, Skoda’s best-seller in Russia.

Volkswagen (-7%) owes its slight decline to a fantastic score by the Polo (+36%) reclaiming the #5 spot YTD off the Renault Duster but Nissan (-30%) struggles despite the Qashqai up 94%. There are two additional carmakers in the Top 10 managing year-on-year gains: Skoda (+6%) thanks to the Rapid (+36%) now by far its Russian best-seller and UAZ (+3%) with the Bukhanka up 21% and the Patriot back up to #22. Below, Mercedes (+1%), Volkswagen Vans (+51%) and Jaguar (+47%) shine.

lada-vis-pickup-russia-august-2016-picture-courtesy-madeinrussia-czThe Lada VIS Pickup is up 4-fold on its August 2015 score. 

Among Chinese manufacturers, Lifan (+2%) now outsells #2 Chery by almost 4 to 1 and places both the X60 (#39) and X50 (#41) well inside the Top 50. For the latter, this is the nameplate’s best ranking in Russia so far with sales up 71% year-on-year. Among other great performers within the models ranking, notice the Lexus LX at #36 (+182%), the Mercedes GLS at #49, Ford Ecosport at #54 (+67%), VW Passat at #80 (+106%), Lada VIS Pickup at #87 (+342%), BMW X4 at #95 (+737%) and Dongfeng Fengshen H30 at #106 (+53%).

Previous post: Russia July 2016: Discover the Top 260 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Previous month:: Russia July 2016: Renault Kaptur instant blockbuster, Ravon brand lands

One year ago: Russia August 2015: Hyundai Solaris outsells Lada Granta again

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Russia July 2016: Discover the Top 260 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Ravon R2 Russia July 2016The Daewoo Matiz becomes Ravon R2 and lands at #78. 

* See the Top 260 All-models ranking by clicking on the title *

After the Top 25 models and Top 55 All-brands, as is the tradition on BSCB we explore the Russian models charts in full detail for July. First the usual LCV suspects slot into the ranking: the GAZ Gazelle at #6 as per its year-to-date ranking and the UAZ Commercial (aka “Bukhanka”) at #19 vs. #20 so far this year. Despite this, the hero of the month, the Renault Kaptur, can still claim to now belong among the 20 best-selling nameplates in Russia. Just outside the Top 30, both the Ford Focus (+37%) and Fiesta (+29%) continue to go against the grain in a devastated market (-16%).

Lexus LX Russia July 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruLexus LX: the recession hasn’t hit luxury SUV sales in Russia. 

Luxury SUVs are more than ever in fashion in Russia: the Mercedes GLE is back up 7 spots to #37, the Lexus RX up 81% to #46, the Audi Q7 up 127% to #49, the Mercedes GLS ranks #52 vs. #73 YTD, the Lexus LX is up 82% to #61 and the Jaguar F-Pace remains inside the Top 100 at #93. Newly created to replace UZ-Daewoo, the Ravon brand has landed in Russia in the form of the R2, a rebadged Daewoo Matiz/Chevrolet Spark, already well inside the Top 100 at #78. The only other newcomer in the July charts is the Renault Twizy with one lonely sale.

Previous post: Russia July 2016: Renault Captur instant blockbuster, Ravon brand lands

Previous month: Russia June 2016: Hyundai Solaris back on top, Lada Vesta resumes growth

One year ago: Russia July 2015: Now with Top 320 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Full July 2016 Top 260 All-models ranking table below.

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Russia July 2016: Renault Kaptur instant blockbuster, Ravon brand lands

Renault Kaptur Russia July 2016. Picture courtesy motor.ruThe Renault Kaptur is already among the 20 best-selling nameplates in Russia. 

* See the Top 55 All-brands and Top 25 models by clicking on the title *

The Russian market freefall has seemingly entered a bottomless pit, with sales down another 16% year-on-year in July to just 109.410 units, leading to a year-to-date tally down 14% to 781.605. Local manufacturer Lada resists very well thanks to a frank renewal of its lineup with deliveries up 4% to 19.9% share vs. 16% a year ago. Kia (-11%) and Hyundai (-12%) follow and drop slightly slower than the market while Renault is down just 8% to cement its fourth place overall with 8.3% market share. Volkswagen (-2%), Nissan (-8%), Skoda (+12%), GAZ (-1%) and Ford (-7%) also improve their market share inside the Top 10 whereas Toyota (-26%) disappoint. Below, Lexus (+0.2%), Lifan (+0.3%), Mercedes (+1%), Cadillac (+30%), Volkswagen Vans (+50%), Infiniti (+100%), Jaguar (+100%) and Smart (+123%) are among a handful of marques actually posting a sales increase.

Ravon Nexia Russia July 2016Ravon Nexia

This month the Uzbekistan-based Daewoo brand disappears from the Russian ranking because it has now been discontinued, having sold a relatively solid 8.574 units in 6 months (-29%). It has now been replaced in Russia by an entirely new brand: Ravon, which appears in the sales charts for the first time in July at #33 with a timid 237 sales and 0.2% share, inserting itself in-between Geely (242) and Jaguar (220). Although this is a new brand, the Uzebek-assembled lineup is the same as that of Daewoo (Matiz, Spark, Nexia, Cobalt and Gentra) and could enable Chevrolet to re-enter the Russian market if it decides to do so at a later stage.

Nissan Qashqai Russia July 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruNissan Qashqai

In the models ranking, the Hyundai Solaris snaps the top spot for the 10th time in the past 15 months despite sales down 23% to 7.904, taking a serious option at the FY2016 pole position and distancing the Kia Rio (-17%) and Lada Granta (-30%), also falling faster than the market. The Lada Vesta continues to creep up the ranking,  posting new volume (5.198) and market share (4.8%) personal bests in 4th position overall, now also its year-to-date ranking. The VW Polo (+12%), Renault Duster (+2%), Skoda Rapid (+17%) and Octavia (+8%), Kia Sportage (+22%), Nissan Qashqai (+74%) and Almera (+19%) all deliver very satisfying volume gains, but the most impressive nameplate inside the Russian Top 25 in July is without a doubt the all-new Renault Kaptur – in fact a Duster with a facelifted and stretched Captur “wrapping paper”, breaking into the Top 20 as early as for its 2nd month in market, soaring to #18 and 1.419 sales.

Previous post: Russia First Half 2016: Hyundai Solaris takes charge in market down 14%

Previous month: Russia June 2016: Hyundai Solaris back on top, Lada Vesta resumes growth

One year ago: Russia July 2015: Hyundai Solaris and Kia Rio take root above all Ladas

Full July 2016 Top 55 All-brands and Top 25 models below.

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Russia First Half 2016: Hyundai Solaris takes charge in market down 14%

Hyundai Solaris Russia June 2016. Picture courtesy trendymen.ruCan the Hyundai Solaris maintain its lead till the end of the year? I doubt it.

* Now updated with the Top 60 All-brands and Top 385 All-models *

New car sales in Russia are trapped in a seemingly never-ending downward spiral, losing another 14% year-on-year over the First Half of 2016. This means the market has lost almost half its volume in two years, going from 1.229.931 over H1 2014 to 672.140 this year… The near future isn’t looking better either, and if local organisation AEB predicts a 10% drop over 2016 it is tainted with an optimism hoped to hold as a self-fullfilling prophecy. Local behemoth Lada has somehow stopped its race to the bottom thanks to the launch of new all-new nameplates (see further down), managing a decline smaller than the market at -12% to 124.353 units and 18.5% share. Kia (-8%) overtakes sister brand Hyundai (-19%) to take the 2nd spot overall with 10.4% share, meaning the Hyundai-Kia combination, at 20% share, is above Lada like last year.

Ford Explorer Russia June 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruFord posts a spectacular 52% sales gain so far in 2016.

Renault manages to improve its share marginally thanks to deliveries down ‘just’ 9% as does Toyota (-6%), Volkswagen (-8%) and Skoda (-4%) but Nissan (-28%) struggles. A handful of marques are able to go against the grain and post year-on-year gains: Chery (+3%) thanks to a facelifted Tiggo, Suzuki (+8%) thanks to the new Vitara, GAZ (+6%) and UAZ (+11%) as well as Lexus (+17%) thanks to the NX and RX but none as spectacularly as Ford, up a fantastic 52% to #11 overall and Lifan revived up 63% to #21 and back to the #1 Chinese spot in Russia, Among smaller brands, Brilliance (+41%) and Jaguar (+73%) also post significant improvements. Two additional Chinese carmakers enter this depressed Russian market over the period: FAW returns after a 2 year-hiatus  with 500 sales and Zotye makes a timid appearance with 74 units sold.

Lexus NX Russia June 2016Thanks to the NX and the new RX, Lexus is up 17% in Russia this year. 

Hyundai Solaris / Lada Granta Half-year sales comparison 2014-2016:

Model H1 2016 H2 2015 H1 2015 H2 2014 H1 2014
Hyundai Solaris 45,930 62,166 53,702 59,070 55,574
Lada Granta 43,967 56,609 63,573 81,335 71,475

For the second semester in a row, the Hyundai Solaris is the best-selling vehicle in Russia thanks to a decline limited to 14% to 45.930 vs. -31% to 43.967 for the Lada Granta and an even better hold for the Kia Rio in third place at -8% to 39.454. Hyundai has sold 108.096 copies of the Solaris in Russia over the past 12 months, way above the 100.576 managed by the Lada Granta, but the Solaris hasn’t been #1 over a calendar year yet. A last minute surge by the Granta in December prevented it from becoming the first foreign-branded vehicle to top Russian charts since World World 2. Can it manage that feat in 2016? The statistical logic would say yes, however I believe it is very unlikely that the powers that be will let a Korean nameplate dominate the Russian ranking in 2016.

Lada Vesta Russia June 2016. Picture courtesy zr.ruThe Lada Vesta lands directly at #5 in Russia over H1 2016

A main component explaining the Granta’s weakness is the roaring arrival of the Vesta which, although not competing with the Granta in price but rather the Solaris and Rio, has made more damage internally at Lada than on its direct competitors. The Vesta lands at #5 so far in 2016 with a solid 22.894 sales, peaking at #4 and 5.128 sales in June. New Lada nameplates traditionally take a while hitting cruising levels, so the Vesta is bound to go higher, but a long-term pole position seems far-fetched. The other Lada new launch, the XRAY, has a much more limited success so far: it ranks #23 over H1 2016 with 8.042 sales, peaking at #13 in April but damaging the Lada 4×4 (-34%).

Lada XRAY Russia June 2016. Picture courtesy…while the Lada XRAY remains outside the Top 20 for now. 

In other models news, the SUV segment is the only one featuring strong gains so far: 7 of the 9 models in positive in the Top 25 are either SUVs or have an SUV variant within their range: the Renault Duster jumps three spots and 15% to land at an outstanding 4th place, the Toyota RAV4 is up 4 ranks and 13% to #7, the Chevrolet Niva enjoys a second wind at +6% to #9, the Renault Sandero is up 0.2% thanks to the Stepway, the UAZ Patriot is up 13% to a best-ever #17 and the Nissan Qashqai benefits from the new model with sales up 63% to #18. The VW Polo (+4%) is the only exception.

Previous post: Russia June 2016: Hyundai Solaris back on top, Lada Vesta resumes growth

One year ago (1):  Russia First Half 2015: Hyundai and Kia winners in damaged market

One year ago (2): Russia First Half 2016: Now with Top 360 All-models (BSCB Exclusive)

Full H1 2016 Top 60 All-brands and Top 385 All-models vs. Full H1 2015 figures below.

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