South Korea July 2016: Kia teases Hyundai for market lead, Volkswagen implodes (-86%)

Kia Carnival South Korea July 2016. Picture courtesy of hankyung.comThe Kia Carnival ranks third overall in South Korea in July. 

* Now updated with the Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 local models and Top 140 foreigners *

New car sales of domestic models in South Korea are down 12% year-on-year in July to 136.814 units, but the year-to-date total is still up 6% to 1.066.069. Local makes are down 11% but foreigners freefall 24% to 11.5% share vs. 12.4% so far this year. Market leader Hyundai take a 20% hit to lower its share to 35%, that’s only 2.8 points above sister brand Kia down a more measured 9% to 32.2%. One year ago Hyundai had a 8.7 points advantage on Kia. GM Korea is up a splendid 16% to 10.5% share, with Ssangyong down 8% to 5.5% and Renault Samsung up 10% to 5.4%. Mercedes reclaims the foreign crown thanks to sales up 5% to 4.184, a long shot above BMW at 2.638 (-33%) and Audi at 1.504 (-43%). Land Rover (+31%), Volvo (+44%) and Jaguar (+96%) for their part post spectacular gains.

Volkswagen South Korea July 2016. Picture courtest theguardian.com and Kim Hong Ji ReutersVolkswagen sales are down 86% year-on-year in South Korea in July…

On the other hand, Volkswagen is hit full frontal by its lineup-wide stop sale order at a devastating -86% to just 425 units. And the brand will fall to almost zero sales in the coming month, with South Korea suspending sales of 80 Volkswagen models as part of a widening investigation into the company’s emissions cheating scandal. The environment ministry said “As of August 2 we have revoked the certification of 83,000 vehicles of 80 models,” as the problem vehicles had fabricated documents for emissions and noise-level tests.

Ford Explorer South Korea July 2016. Picture courtesy autocar.co.kr…while Ford Explorer sales are up 99%. 

Model-wise, the Hyundai Porter is back to the #1 spot it holds year-to-date despite sales down 13% year-on-year to 8.276, distancing the Hyundai Sonata (-18%) at 6.858 while the Kia Carnival jumps 8 spots on June to land on the third step of the podium in spite of deliveries down 5% year-onyear to 6.773. The Chevrolet Spark is up 91% to #6, the Kia K7 up 168% to #9, the Chevrolet Malibu up 172% to #11 and Hyundai Genesis up 49% to #12. The Samsung SM6 aka Renault Talisman, the instant blockbuster of the First Half of the year, is down to #13 in July. The Mercedes E-Class is back up 20 spots to resume its foreign model domination despite sales down 28% year-on-year to 1.215. It distances the BMW 5 Series (-31%), Mercedes C Class (+118%), Audi A6 (-42%) and Mercedes S-Class (-52%). The Ford Explorer (+99%), Mercedes CLS (+126%), GLA (+146%) and Toyota Prius (+81%) impress.

Previous post: South Korea First Half 2016: Samsung SM6 instant blockbuster

Previous month: South Korea June 2016: Hyundai Avante up 76%, Kia Niro in Top 20

One year ago: South Korea July 2015: Facelifted Hyundai Santa Fe triumphs

Full July 2016 Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 local models and Top 140 foreigners below.

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South Korea First Half 2016: Samsung SM6 instant blockbuster

Samsung SM6 South Korea March 2016The Renault Talisman is sold as the Samsung SM6 in South Korea.

* See the Top 30 All-brands, Top 60 local models and Top 170 foreigners by clicking on the title *

Now updated with foreign brands and models data.

In South Korea, new car sales are up a robust 9% over the first half of 2016 to 929.255 registrations, boosted by local manufacturers up 11% to 812.266 just as foreign ones drop 2% to 116.989. Hyundai remains the uncontested market leader but loses share at 37.8% vs. 39.4% a year ago due to sales just edging up 4% year-on-year. Kia outpaces the market at +14% to 29.8% share but the best performers over the period are GM Korea (+22%) and Renault Samsung(+26%). Foreign leaders Mercedes (+7%), BMW (-4%), Audi (-11%) and most strikingly Volkswagen (-33%) all lose market share while below, Land Rover (+64%), Infiniti (+39%), Honda (+27%), Volvo (+27%) and Lexus (+23%) all impress.

Hyundai Avante South Korea June 2016Hyundai Avante

Model-wise, as it was the case at the same time last year the Hyundai Porter is the best-seller with sales up 6% to 54.689. It however finished 2015 at #3 so may not stay in the year-to-date lead for much longer, if the Hyundai Avante (aka Elantra) shows the same strength during the rest of the year as it did in June (+76%). Leader over the Full Year 2015, the Hyundai Sonata is down 11% to third position over 10.000 units away from the top spot. Reversely, the Kia Sorento gains 13% and two spots year-on-year to land at a stunning 4th place overall, overtaking the Hyundai Santa Fe (+9%) in the race for the title of #1 SUV in South Korea.

Ssangyong Tivoli South Korea May 2016. Picture courtesy motorian.krThe Tivoli is the first Ssangyong to break into its monthly home Top 10 in 12 years.

The Chevrolet Spark for its part outpaces the Kia Morning in the minicar combat thanks to the new generation propelling it up 57% vs. -18% for the Kia. Also worth mentioning are the Kia K7 up 3-fold to #12 and the Kia Sportage up 61% to #14.Further down, two instant blockbusters single-handedly revive their respective brands. Over a year after its very successful launch, the Ssangyong Tivoli has not plateaued yet thanks to the arrival of the 7-seat XLV variant. Beating its monthly volume record on each of the past 3 months (5.375, 5.490, 5.711), in May the Tivoli was the first Ssangyong to break into the Top 10 in 12 years, since the Rexton and Musso SUT in 2004, and ranks at #13 halfway through 2016.

Genesis EQ900 South Korea June 2016Genesis EQ900

Even more spectacularly, the Samsung SM6 – sold as the Renault Talisman outside of Korea – almost instantly stormed into the Top 10 in March (#8), the first Renault Samsung to do so in 5 years, improving further to #6 both in May and June and hitting a record 7.901 units in May. It is #15 so far. More successful launches below: the Genesis EQ900 at #20, the Kia Niro at #24 and the Chevrolet Impala at #25. The Hyundai Ioniq is more discreet at #33.. Over in the foreign models aisle, the BMW 5 Series takes the lead despite sales down 12% to 7.342, followed by the Audi A6 (+18%) whereas 2015’s leader the Mercedes E-Class is down 26% to #3. The BMW 3 Series (-10%) and VW Tiguan (-15%) round out the Top 5, with the Mercedes GLC (#13), Land Rover Discovery Sport (#15) and Mercedes GLE (#20) the most popular newcomers.

Previous post: South Korea June 2016: Hyundai Avante up 76%, Kia Niro in Top 20

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South Korea June 2016: Hyundai Avante up 76%, Kia Niro in Top 20

Kia Niro South Korea June 2016Kia Niro

* See the Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 local models and Top 143 foreigners by clicking on the title *

Now updated with foreign brands and models rankings.

The South Korean new car market is up 16% year-on-year in June to 184.437 units, lifting the half-year tally up 9% to 929.255. Local manufacturers are solely responsible for this uptick with sales up 19% in June and 11% year-to-date whereas foreign brands are down 4% in June and 2% year-to-date. Hyundai under-performs once again at +11% to 69.970 units and 42.3% share whereas sister company Kia does better at +17% to 52.506 sales but is still below market growth. Reversely, GM Korea shoots up 48% to 18.058 and Renault Samsung gains 60% to 10.778 deliveries, solely thanks to the tremendous and continuing success of the all-new SM6 (aka Renault Talisman), once again the 6th best-selling vehicle in the country this month.

Hyundai Avante South Korea June 2016. Picture courtesy minyouhwa.comThe Hyundai Avante is up 76% in June at home. 

Hyundai places four nameplates in the Top 4 this month, with the Avante (aka Elantra) shooting up 76% to reclaim the top spot ahead of the Porter, Santa Fe and Sonata. The Kia Sorento holds strong at #5, the Hyundai Tucson is up 33% to #7, the Chevrolet Malibu is up almost 5-fold on June 2015 to break into the Top 10 for the very first time in South Korea thanks to a new generation, the Ssangyong Tivoli is up 57% to break its monthly volume record anew to 5.711 sales but is down 4 spots on May to #13, the Kia K7 is up 205% to #15 and the Kia Sportage is up 65% to #16 thanks to the new model. Let’s also salute the very solid performance of the Kia Niro hybrid, breaking into the Top 20 this month thanks to 3.246 sales, to be compared with just 761 deliveries for its platform twin the Hyundai Ioniq (#34). The Genesis EQ900 has stabilised around 3.000 monthly units.

Audi A6 South Korea June 2016The Audi A6 is the most popular foreigner in South Korea in June.

Among foreign carmakers, BMW remains on top for the third consecutive month despite sales down 16% to 4.820, distancing Mercedes (+8%) and Audi (+28%) while Volkswagen implodes down 58% due to renewed stop-sale orders on its scandal-embroiled diesel lineup. Jaguar (+83%), Lexus (+76%), Volvo (+76%), Toyota (+64%), Honda (+48%) and Land Rover (+38%) on the other hand display spectacular gains. Model-wise, a generation changeover has cost the Mercedes E-Class its YTD pole position, now held by the BMW 5 Series despite sales down 47% to #5. The Audi A6 is the most popular in June ahead of the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes S Class, with the Land Rover Discovery Sport also impressive at #11.

Previous month: South Korea May 2016: Samsung SM6 and Ssangyong Tivoli break records

One year ago: South Korea June 2015: Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento shoot up

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South Korea May 2016: Samsung SM6 & Ssangyong Tivoli break records

Renault Samsung SM6 South Korea May 2016. Picture courtesy bobaedream.co.krExtraordinary success for the Renault-Samsung SM6.

* Now updated with the Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 All-local models and Top 140 foreigners *

Sales of new light vehicles in South Korea are up a stunning 18% year-on-year in May to 165.285 registrations, but for once it’s neither Hyundai (+11%) nor Kia (+19%) that are the engine of growth in the country. GM Korea is up 41% to 17.179 sales, boosted by the fantastic success of the new generation Chevrolet Spark up 114% to #3 and the new Malibu up 169%. Renault Samsung delivers the best performance at +68% to 11.004 units, single-handedly lifted by the tremendous welcome South Korean consumers have reserved for the SM6 (aka Renault Talisman) up to a record-breaking 6th place overall this month with 7.901 deliveries. This is the highest ranking a Renault-Samsung has achieved at home in almost 6 years – since October 2010 when the SM5 ranked 6th also (and that’s the month when BSCB was launched too).

Ssangyong Tivoli South Korea May 2016. Picture courtesy motorian.krThe Ssangyong Tivoli breaks into the Top 10 for the first time at home. 

Renault Samsung knocks Ssangyong down to 5th place in the brands ranking (+19%) but the brand posts the other record-breaking milestone in May: partly thanks to its new longer variant (pictured above), the Tivoli is up two spots on last month to break into the South Korean Top 10 for the first time at #9 with 5.490 sales. This makes the Tivoli the first Ssangyong to rank inside its home Top 10 in 12 yearssince the Rexton and Musso SUT in 2004. In other local models news, the Hyundai Porter cements its market leadership with sales up 30% to 9.597, distancing the Hyundai Sonata at 8.547 (-10%), the Genesis EQ900 (#21) and Kia Niro (#22) confirm their solid career starts while the Hyundai Ioniq is stuck at #35.

Honda Accord South Korea May 2016. Picture courtesy gpkorea.comThe Honda Accord is up to #7 foreigner in May in South Korea thanks to the new model. 

BMW is the most popular foreign carmaker in South Korea for the 2nd month in a row and the third time this year thanks to stable sales at 4.651 units whereas Mercedes slides 11% to 3.148 but remains in the year-to-date lead at 19.953 deliveries (+7%) vs. 18.334 (-1%) for BMW. Audi stuns with a 55% gain to 2.336 units, keeping ahead of Volkswagen down 8% to 2.326. Land Rover (+163%), Honda (+109%), Chrysler (+69%), Jaguar (+32%), Volvo (+27%) and Toyota (+26%) all post spectacular gains but Ford (-12%), Nissan (-22%), Jeep (-26%) and Peugeot (-50%) tumble down.

Model-wise, the leading quartet is unchanged on April, with the BMW 5 Series in the lead (+14%) ahead of the Audi A6 (+158%), Mercedes C-Class (+269%) and BMW 3 Series (-38%). Meanwhile, the Mercedes E-Class, still the 2016 YTD leader, is stuck at a paltry 69th spot due to its generation changeover. Notice also the Honda Accord leaping 54 spots on last month to #7, the BMW 1 Series up 24 to #10 and the Land Rover Discovery Sport up to #15.

The April 2016 post has now been updated with All-brands and All-foreign models data

Previous month: South Korea April 2016: Kia Niro almost in Top 20

One year ago: South Korea May 2015: Hyundai Sonata reclaims pole position

Full May 2016 Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 All-local models and Top 140 All-foreigners below.

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South Korea April 2016: Kia Niro almost in Top 20

Kia Niro South Korea April 2016Kia Niro

* Now updated with the Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 All-local models & Top 140 foreigners *

The South Korean new car market is up 4% year-on-year to 157.762 registrations with local manufacturers pulling the entire market gain at +4% and 139.617 sales whereas foreign carmakers are stable at 18.145 and 11.5% share. The year-to-date tally is now up 6%  are up 4% year-on-year in April to 139.617 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total up 5% at 579.533 units after five months. If perennial leader Hyundai is down 6% to fall below 60.000 units this month, sister brand Kia is in great shape with deliveries up 13% to 48.505. Similarly GM Korea (+10%), Ssangyong (+12%) and most strikingly Renault Samsung (+22%) all deliver double-digit year-on-year gains.

Ssangyong Tivoli South Korea January 2015. Picture courtesy bobaedream.co.krThe Ssangyong Tivoli is getting closer and closer to a first Top 10 ranking.

The Hyundai Porter is once again the most popular nameplate in the country despite sales down 3% to 9.155. It is followed this month by the Kia Sorento up a splendid 34% to 8.256 units, the Sonata (-5%) and Avante (-2%). The Chevrolet Spark still enjoys a new generation-fuelled boost at +63% in 5th position with the Kia K7 more than tripling its sales year-on-year (+238%) to 5.504 at #9. It’s just outside the Top 10 that things get really interesting. Over a year after its launch the Ssangyong Tivoli is still improving: up 57% this month to break its monthly volume record at 5.375, hitting its best ranking yet at #11 (previous best: #12 last November). If the Tivoli manages an incursion in South Korea’s Top 10 in the coming months, it would be the first Ssangyong to do so in 12 years, since the Rexton and Musso SUT in 2004.

Renault Samsung SM6 South Korea April 2016The Renault Samsung SM6 is an instant blockbuster in South Korea.

Hero of last month, the Samsung SM6 (aka Renault Talisman) confirms it is the hit the brand had been desperately waiting for, ranking at a strong #12 with 5.195 deliveries (12.283 year-to-date). The Genesis EQ900 brilliantly remains inside the Top 20 (2.986 sales) while the Kia Niro – aptly described by the company as a hybrid SUV with an un-hybrid design – misses out on a Top 20 ranking for is first full month in market by less than 600 sales at #21 with 2.440 units. Among other recent launches, the Chevrolet Impala is down 4 spots to #26 and the Hyundai Ioniq down 9 to #35.

Audi A6 South Korea April 2016Audi sales are up 145% in South Korea this month. 

In the foreign manufacturers aisle, BMW (+6%) overtakes Mercedes (-14%) to take the lead but remains behind year-to-date at 13.683 (-1%) vs. 16.805 (+11%) for Mercedes. Audi catches up on sales lost in the wake of the Volkswagen Group’s emissions scandal with sales up 145% to 2.474, with Toyota (+51%), Lexus (+30%), Land Rover (+61%) and Jeep (+60%) also impressive whereas Volkswagen falls apart at -70%. The BMW 5 Series is the best-selling import this month with 1.416 deliveries above the Audi A6 (1.313) but the Mercedes E-Class drops from its usual #1 spot in March to #5 this month. The Ford Explorer (#6), Mercedes CLA (#7) and Toyota Prius (#12) are all in great shape.

Previous post: South Korea January-March 2016: Genesis EQ900 and Samsung SM6 hit bullseye

One year ago: South Korea April 2015: New Hyundai Tucson shoots up to #2

Full April 2016 Top 30 brands, Top 55 All-local models & Top 140 foreigners below.

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South Korea Jan-Mar 2016: Genesis EQ900 & Samsung SM6 hit bullseye

Genesis EQ900 South Korea March 2016The Genesis EQ900 now dominates the luxury segment in South Korea.

* See the Top 55 local models, Top 130 foreigners and Top 30 brands by clicking on the title *

Now updated with the Top 30 brands and Top 135 foreigners for March 2016

The South Korean new car market starts 2016 on a shy note, down 7% year-on-year in January to 122.542 registrations, mainly pulled down by foreigners (-18% to 13.2% share vs. 15.1% in January 2015) while local brands are down 5%. February results are better (+5%) at 126.287 units but once again dragged down by foreign carmakers (-5%) with local manufacturers up 7%. March confirms the uptrend at +15% to 172.942, foreigners are up this time but lag behind the market at +7%.

In January, Hyundai (-1%), Kia (+5%) and Ssangyong (-4%) outperform the market to gain market share as opposed to GM Korea (-22%) and Renault Samsung (-63%) crumbling down below Mercedes (-2%) and BMW (-20%). Audi (-46%) and Volkswagen (-45%) are hit full frontal by the consequences of its emissions scandal but Land Rover (+79%), Ford (+33%), Mini (+39%) and Infiniti (+142%) start 2016 all guns blazing. February shows Kia (+20%), GM Korea (+25%), Mercedes (+24%), Land Rover (+50%), Mini (+48%) and Honda (+54%) all post solid gains while Volkswagen (-25%) and Audi (-60%) are struggling again. March sees Kia (+19%), GM Korea (+20%), Renault Samsung (+70%) and Mercedes (+42%) frankly outperform the market, with Land Rover (+46%), Mini (+42%) and Nissan (+30%) also strong.

Samsung SM6 South Korea March 2016The Samsung SM6 ranks 8th overall in March. 

The main event of these first three months of 2016 in South Korea is the excellent sales result of Hyundai’s new luxury brand: Genesis. Its first model, the EQ900, clocks up 2.164 sales in January, 2.476 in February and 3.570 in March. This is enough to solidly install in inside the Top 20 local models (#19), but most significantly it is a notch above the imported luxury sedans it is aiming at: the Mercedes E-Class, #1 foreigner over the period, only managed 1.500 units in January, 1.637 in February and , and that was more than double any other foreigner. Look no further than the Genesis success to explain for a large part the plateauing of foreign sales so far in South Korea this year.

Hyundai Ioniq South Korea March 2016. Picture courtesy autocar.co.ukHyundai Ioniq. Picture autocar.co.uk

The EQ900 isn’t the only successful newcomer. The Hyundai Ioniq hybrid lands at #32 in January and soars to #22 in February (1.311 sales), curbing its enthusiasm slightly in March at #26 (1.250 units). The Kia Mohave reappears in the ranking at #25 in February and #23 in March thanks to its facelift and the Kia Niro hybrid arrives at #54 in March with four sales. But the most impressive launch goes to the Samsung SM6 (aka Renault Talisman): after a couple of very timid months (#50 in January and #41 in February), it shoots up to #8 overall in March with a stunning 6.751 sales, light years above its results so far in France and any other worldwide country for that matter. The SM6 is the first Samsung to rank inside the Top 10 in 5 years.

Chevrolet Spark

The Hyundai Porter takes the lead of the models ranking in January and March, earning it the year-to-date top spot above the Hyundai Avante, #1 in February, and the Kia Sorento. Boosted by its facelift, the Kia K7 soars to third place overall in February and even though it falls back down to #9 in March, it is up 3-fold so far in 2016. Similarly, the Chevrolet Spark is up 97% to #6 in February and up 88% to #2 in March. Among foreign models, the Mercedes GLC is an instant blockbuster, ranking 6th overall both in January and February and adding up to 1.062 sales in two months. The Ford Explorer also shines at #9 so far this year vs. #15 in 2015, as do the Infiniti Q50 (#11), Mercedes GLE (#14), Land Rover Discovery Sport (#15) and BMW 7 Series (#24).

Previous post: South Korea Full Year 2015: Hyundai Sonata #1, Ssangyong Tivoli shines

One year ago (Jan): South Korea January 2015: Ssangyong Tivoli lands at #17

One year ago (Feb): South Korea February 2015: SsangYong Tivoli up to #13

One year ago (Mar): South Korea March 2015: Hyundai Porter and Sonata on top

Full January, February and March 2016 Top 30 All-brands , Top 55 local models and Top 130 foreigners below.

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South Korea Full Year 2015: Hyundai Sonata #1, Ssangyong Tivoli shines

Hyundai Sonata South Korea 2015Hyundai Sonata

* See the Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 local models & Top 170 foreigners by clicking on the title *

Excellent year for new car sales in South Korea, up 11% on 2014 to 1.824.288 registrations. If local manufacturers show dynamic growth at +9% to 1.579.706 units, foreign carmakers lodge a second consecutive year at +25% to reach a record 244.582 deliveries, the first time in the history of South Korean automobile that foreigners cross the symbolic 200.000 annual sales mark. They also reach an all-ime high 13.4% market share vs. 11.9% last year. Hyundai (+9%) maintains its iron grip on its home market at 39.1% share while sister company Kia (+12%) improves to 28.9. Both carmakers combined hold a staggering 68% of the South Korean market, stable year-on-year.

Peugeot 2008 South Korea 2015. Picture courtesy motorian.krThe 2008 helps lift Peugeot sales up 136% in South Korea in 2015.

GM Korea, which includes the Chevrolet and Daewoo brands, evolves like the market at +10% but the nice surprise of 2015 comes from Ssangyong: up 45% to just under 100.000 sales, overtaking rival Renault Samsung – this mainly thanks to the new Tivoli as we’ll see further down. Foreign carmakers are once again dominated by Germans brands: BMW remains the most popular import at #6 overall (+19%), followed by Mercedes (+32%), Volkswagen (+17%) and Audi (+18%). Lexus shoots up 29% to bypass parent company Toyota (+17%) and break into the overall Top 10 brands. Volvo (+42%), Nissan (+45%), Porsche (+50%), Land Rover (+55%) and Peugeot (+136%) all take off.

Ssangyong Tivoli South Korea 2015. Picture courtesy autocar.co.krSsangyong Tivoli

Model-wise, the Hyundai Sonata posts a second consecutive year in the top spot thanks to stable sales at 108.438. It is the 12th time the Sonata is crowned at home since 2000, with interruptions only in 2004 (Hyundai Santa Fe) and in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013 when the Hyundai Avante (aka Elantra) was #1. The same Avante, boosted by a mid-life refresh, is up 7% and two spots to #2, ahead of the Hyundai Porter (+4%) and Santa Fe (+20%). The Kia Morning at #5 (-8%) and Hyundai Grandeur at #6 (-6%) both lose ground but the Kia Sorento (+104%) and Carnival (+62%) both enjoy the first full year of their new generation inside the Top 10.

Genesis EQ900 South Korea 2015Genesis EQ900

Further down, the Ssangyong Tivoli is by far the most popular all-new model for 2015, landing directly at #15 and hitting a personal best 12th place in November – likely the highest ranking by any Ssangyong model in over a decade – and 5.328 sales in October. Far below, we welcome the Chevrolet Impala at #36 (but up to #19 in December) and last but not least, the flagship model of a new luxury brand launched by Hyundai in December: the Genesis EQ900 at #53 with 530 units sold in the last month of the year.

Mercedes-Maybach S 600 South Korea 2015The Mercedes S-Class is the 5th best-selling foreign model in South Korea in 2015.

The Mercedes E-Class remains the most popular foreign model in South Korea with sales up 12% to 19,658. Like in 2014 it is followed by its direct competitors the BMW 5 Series (+4%) and Audi A6 (+11%) with the smaller BMW 3 Series taking 4th spot (+22%). Extraordinary score from the Mercedes S-Class lifted up 148% to an incredible 5th place and 10.356 sales by the new model. Other great performers include the Mercedes C-Class up 48%, the Mini Cooper up 52%, the Peugeot 2008 landing directly at #12 with 4.048 sales, the Audi A3 up 121%, BMW 4 Series up 105% and the Nissan Qashqai arriving at #29 with 2.218 delivers.

Previous month: South Korea November 2015: Tivoli hits highest Ssangyong ranking in 11 years

Previous year: South Korea Full Year 2014: Hyundai Sonata reclaims leadership

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

Full Year 2015 Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 local models & Top 170 foreigners vs. 2014 figures below.

Full December 2015 Top 30 All-brands, Top 52 local models & Top 140 foreigners below.

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South Korea November 2015: Tivoli hits highest Ssangyong ranking in 11 years

Ssangyong Tivoli South Korea January 2015. Picture courtesy bobaedream.co.krThe Ssangyong Tivoli hits a record 12th place in November at home.

* See the Top 30 All-brands, Top 53 All-locals & Top 140 foreigners by clicking on the title *

The South Korean new car market posts another very dynamic month in November at +15% to 164.702 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total to 1.624.059 units. Once again sales are boosted by a record performance from foreign manufacturers, up 39% year-on-year to 22.991 sales and 14% share vs. +12% and 141.711 units for local carmakers. Hyundai (+17%) easily keeps the lead, even widening the gap with Kia (+12%). GM Korea (-7%) and Renault Samsung (-30%) struggle but Ssangyong shoots up 56%.

VW Jetta South Korea November 2015. Picture courtesy yeoinwooVolkswagen is already making up for a catastrophic October result. Picture Yeoinwoo

Volkswagen leaps 66% year-on-year, going from just 947 sales in October to a whopping 4.517 and #1 foreigner this month, potentially catching up on the bottleneck created by diesel uncertainty a couple of months ago. BMW (+37%), Audi (+56%), Mercedes (+44%) and Land Rover (+65%) all post fantastic results, as do Peugeot (+83%), Volvo (+68%), Infiniti (+134%), Jaguar (+131%) and Cadillac (+163%).

Hyundai Sonata South Korea 2014. Picture courtesy of caranddriver.comThe Hyundai Sonata is back in pole position in South Korea.

After three consecutive months of Hyundai Avante reign, the Hyundai Sonata (+35%) jumps back into a pole position it holds year-to-date but that it hadn’t snapped since June. The Hyundai Avante (+26%) follows, ahead of the most popular of the three recently relaunched Hyundai Group SUVs: the Santa Fe (+47%). The Kia Sportage is up 88% to #7 and the Hyundai Tucson up 90% to #11.

SsangYong Rexton South Korea 2004The last Ssangyong to rank that high was the Rexton in 2004.

But the hero SUV of the month is the Ssangyong Tivoli: by gaining two spots on October it hits a record 12th place, simply the best ranking any Ssangyong model ever achieved since BSCB started following South Korea monthly in June 2010… In fact, we have to go back to 2004 to see Ssangyong models reaching similar levels at home: the Rexton finished that year at #11 and the Musso SUT at #14.

The foreign models ranking reflects the resurrection of Volkswagen: below the traditional strong sellers Mercedes E-Class and Audi A6, the VW Tiguan shoots up 21 spots on October to #3, overtaking both the BMW 5 Series and 3 Series, the VW Jetta is up 29 to #6, the Golf up 20 to #8, the Passat up 17 to #13 and the VW CC up 48 to #15.

Previous month: South Korea October 2015: New Kia Sportage in Top 5

One year ago: South Korea November 2014: Kia Morning #1, Hyundai Aslan up

Full November 2015 Top 30 All-brands, Top 53 All-locals and Top 140 foreigners below.

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South Korea October 2015: New Kia Sportage in Top 5

Kia Sportage South Korea October 2015Kia Sportage

* See the Top 54 All-local models, Top 140 foreigners & Top 30 brands by clicking on the title *

Strong performance of the Korean new car market in October at +19% to 163.529 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total to 1.457.701 units. For once, the year-on-year gains are triggered by local manufacturers up 20% to 146.106 deliveries vs. +6.5% and 17.423 for foreign nameplates. Hyundai is up 17% to 41.5% share, Kia up 26% to 28.5% and Ssangyong takes off by 83% to cross the 10.000 monthly sales for the first time since BSCB is following South Korea monthly, solely due to the ever-growing success of the Tivoli, up to a record 5.237 units this month. Audi (+28%), Lexus (+34%), Porsche (+47%), Land Rover (+62%), Toyota (+69%) and Jaguar (+103%) sales put a small on their manager’s face, but none as much as Peugeot…

Peugeot 2008 South Korea October 2015. Picture courtesy autodiary.krPeugeot 2008. Picture autodiary.kr

The French manufacturer is up 4-fold (+332%) to #9 brand overall with 1.071 sales, all thanks to an enthusiastic response to the new 2008 accounting for two-thirds of the carmaker’s sales in South Korea and #5 foreign nameplate overall in October. Peugeot even overtakes Volkswagen in freefall at -46% to #10. South Korea is the 2nd country in the world after Japan where Volkswagen sales have very significantly suffered since the emission scandal broke.

Jaguar XE South Korea October 2015. Picture courtesy autocar.co.ukJaguar XE. Picture autocar.co.uk

In the local models ranking, the Hyundai Avante holds onto the pole position for the third month running thanks to sales up a whopping 46% year-on-year to 12.838, just as the Hyundai Sonata cements its 2015 leadership with deliveries up 30% on a year ago to 10.487. In fact Hyundai monopolises the Top 4 with the Porter up three spots on September to #3 and the Santa Fe up 44% year-on-year to #4. In 5th place, the new generation boosts the Kia Sportage up 158% to 7.586 sales with its year-to-date total now down only 11% on 2014. The Mercedes E-Class remains the best-selling foreign nameplate but this month it is the only one to sell over 1.000 or 1.500 units at 1.561, distancing the BMW 5 Series (988), Mercedes C-Class (909) and Audi A6 (839). The Jaguar XE jumps 9 spots to #22 and the Jeep Renegade is up 16 to #25.

Previous month: South Korea September 2015: Hyundai Avante stays ahead

One year ago (1): South Korea October 2014: Hyundai Aslan starts

One year ago (2): South Korea October 2014: Now with Top 186 All-models

Full October 2015 Top 54 All-local models, Top 140 foreigners & Top 30 brands below.

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South Korea September 2015: Hyundai Avante stays ahead

Hyundai Avante South Korea September 2015. Picture courtesy minyouhwa.comThe new generation Hyundai Avante (aka Elantra) is #1 at home again.

* See the Top 45 local models, Top 140 foreigners and Top 30 brands by clicking on the title *

The South Korean new car market is up a fantastic 16% year-on-year in September to 148.448 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total up to 1.294.172 units. This strong upwards trend is due to the combination of a slew of new strong-selling local models and import sales breaking record after record: up 20% this month to 20.381 deliveries and 14.7% market share. Hyundai remains the most popular choice at home but is frankly below its traditional level at just 35% share vs. 38.6% year-to-date. Sister brand Kia on the opposite is up a beautiful 17% to 30.3% share, above the 29.2% it commands so far in 2015. GM Korea is up 24% while Ssangyong shoots up 59% to 8.106 sales thanks to the success of the Tivoli edging up to a best-ever 13th position in September. Among foreign brands, Mercedes outsells BMW once again (4.329 vs. 3.506) and is now threatening the Bavarian marque for the top spot year-to-date (34.889 vs. 35.277). Audi (+45%) lurks just behind and passes Volkswagen (+27%). Notice also Lexus (+45%), Peugeot (+122%), Honda (+57%) and Jaguar (+51%) also in great shape.

Chevrolet Impala South Korea September 2015Chevrolet Impala

Thanks to the arrival in dealerships of the 2016 generation, the Hyundai Avante – aka Elantra – is once again the best-selling nameplate at home in South Korea with 8.583 sales, and like in August Hyundai monopolises the podium with the Sonata at #2 and Santa Fe at #3. Note a second consecutive low month from the Hyundai Porter (#6) means the Sonata is now #1 year-to-date despite sales down 7% to 74.945. The Kia Sorento is up two spots on last month to an excellent 4th place, the Kia Carnival is up 65% year-on-year to #7, the Chevrolet Spark up 48% to #9 thanks to the new model, the Kia K5 is up 75% to #9, the Hyundai Genesis up 38% to #17 and the Chevrolet Impala climbs 19 ranks on August to #23 for its second appearance in the Korean sales charts.

Jeep Renegade South Korea September 2015. Picture courtesy roadtest.co.krJeep Renegade

Over on the import charts, the hierarchy is respected with the Mercedes E-Class (+15%), BMW 5 Series (+51%) and Audi A6 (+30%) dominating, this month joined by the Mercedes C-Class (+97%) in the select club of foreign nameplates selling over 1.000 monthly units in South Korea. The Audi A4 (+68%) and Mercedes S-Class (+47%) also impress inside the Top 10, while below let’s single out the Ford Explorer (+68%), BMW X6 (#22) and the Jaguar XE up 54 ranks on August to a splendid 31st position. Finally we welcome the Jeep Renegade in the South Korean charts this month, landing directly at #41 in the foreigner ranking with 138 units sold.

Previous month: South Korea August 2015: Facelifted Chevrolet Spark soars to #4

One year ago (1): South Korea September 2014: New Kia Sorento shoots up to #3

One year ago (2): South Korea September 2014: Now with Top 185 All-models

Full September 2015 Top 45 locals, Top 140 foreigners and Top 30 brands below.

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