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World March 2014: Audi (also) breaks single-month sales record

April 8th, 2014 1 comment

Audi R8 World March 2014. Picture courtesy of motortrend.comAudi, like Mercedes, is at record worldwide levels in March.

* See the Full article by clicking on the title! *

Only a couple of days after Mercedes announced it broke its monthly worldwide sales record, Audi announced it did exactly the same! March worldwide volume for the German premium carmakers is up a stunning 15% year-on-year to 170,450 registrations, obliterating its previous singe-month record of 150,300 units reached back in September 2013 by more than 20,000 units!

But wait there’s more: exactly as Mercedes did, Audi also posted all-time record worldwide First Quarter sales at 412,850 vehicles, up 12% year-on-year and the first time in the company’s history it sells over 400,000 units in the first 3 months of a year. As a reminder Mercedes sold 374,276 units in the same period (+15%). Audi said its year-on-year sales have risen for 51 consecutive months now. These are historical times indeed for premium German brands. BMW will announce March sales later this week, is a third record in the cards?

Not surprisingly, the new A3 sedan played a big role in Audi’s March record, with worldwide sales of the nameplate up 53% on March 2013 to 28,750 units including the hatchback sedan. Interestingly, the not so young Q7 SUV also did wonders at +39% while the A8 was up a whopping 49%.

Audi sales increased 7% year-on-year in Europe in March to 88,750 units, and if we look at figures country by country China is by far the brand’s strongest market with 47,636 sales (+37%) followed by the UK at 28,068 (+13%) and Germany at 27,226 (+10%). The US for its part is up 8% to 14,246 sales.

Previous post: World March 2014: Mercedes breaks single-month sales record

 

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Categories: World

World March 2014: Mercedes breaks single-month sales record

April 4th, 2014 3 comments

Mercedes GLA World March 2014The all-new GLA helped Mercedes break its monthly volume record this month.

* See the Full article by clicking on the title! *

According to Automotive News, Mercedes set a new worldwide monthly sales record in March, up 13% year-on-year to 158,523 registrations. First quarter sales also reached an all-time high 374,276 units, up 15% on 2013. Mercedes said this record was driven by high demand for the E-Class model and the fast growing compact range: the A Class, B Class and GLA Class which launched mid-March helped Mercedes lift sales in the compact segment by 27% last month. Mercedes gained ground in all its major markets in March, with the US up 11% to 27,401 deliveries, Germany up 1% to 25,544, China up 34% to 24,936 and the UK up 19% to 22,369 units. In Europe as a whole the brand progressed by 8% to 76,587 sales or 48% of its worldwide total.

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Categories: World

Full Year 2013 Reports: 101 markets now available!

March 31st, 2014 7 comments

Toyota Corolla World 2013Will the Toyota Corolla top the worldwide models sales charts in 2013? Answer shortly…

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

World updates:

World Full Year 2013: Now with Top 20 biggest manufacturers!

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

Big 3 worldwide markets:

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

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

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

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

All markets in alphabetical order:

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

Angola Full Year 2013: Hyundai i10 most popular

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

Australia Full Year 2013: Toyota Corolla finally tops record market

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

Bahrain Full Year 2013: Toyota Prado dislodges Land Cruiser

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

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

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

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

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

Bosnia & Herzegovina Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia king

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

Brunei Full Year 2013: Toyota and Kia on top again

Bulgaria Full Year 2013: Dacia Dokker surprise leader

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

Chile Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Sail confirms top spot

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

Colombia Full Year 2013: Chevrolet Sail takes the lead

Croatia Full Year 2013: VW Golf new leader

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Finland Full Year 2013: VW Golf back in charge

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

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

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

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

Greece Full Year 2013: Toyota Yaris reclaims lead

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

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

Hungary Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia reclaims top spot

Iceland Full Year 2013: Skoda Octavia back in pole position

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

Indonesia Full Year 2013: Toyota Avanza tops new record market

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Kenya Full Year 2013: Toyota and Mitsubishi dominate

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

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

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

Luxembourg Full Year 2013: 3 premium Germans in Top 10

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

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

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

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

Moldova Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan and Duster on top

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Paraguay Full Year 2013: Toyota Hilux and Kia Rio dominate

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

Philippines Full Year 2013: Toyota and Mitsubishi top record market

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

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

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

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

Reunion (France) Full Year 2013: Peugeot most popular

Romania Full Year 2013: Dacia Logan and Duster dominate

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

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

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

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

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

Singapore Full Year 2013: Mercedes leads for the first time

Slovakia Full Year 2013: Podium 100% Skoda

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Categories: Featured Category, World

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

March 25th, 2014 13 comments

Toyota Yaris World 2013. Picture courtesy of mundomotorizado.comToyota is the most popular brand in the world in 2013.

* See the Top 25 best-selling brands by clicking on the title! Thanks Renato *

After going through the Top 20 best-selling manufacturers worldwide in 2013, I can now share with you the Top 25 most popular car brands. Toyota keeps the lead with over 8 million sales above Volkswagen at 6.3 million and Ford at 5.7 million. Chevrolet is up to a record 4.98 million sales, followed by Hyundai up 7% to 4.7 million and Nissan at 4.4 million. Honda is the last brand above 4 million worldwide sales while Kia, Renault and Fiat close the Top 10.

Wuling Rongguang World 2013Wuling is the best-selling Chinese brand in the world with 1.5 million sales.

As mentioned in the Top 20 manufacturers article, BMW is the best-selling premium brand in the world at #12, followed by Audi at #13 and Mercedes at #16. Wuling is the most popular Chinese brand at #14 with 1,547,117 sales, almost all of them being minivans sold in China. Notice also Maruti at #19, Opel at #21, Buick at #22 with 1,032,331 units (almost 80% of which in China) and ChangAn at #23 with 938,457 sales.

Previous post: World Full Year 2013: Now with Top 20 biggest manufacturers!

Full Year 2013 Top 25 brands Ranking Table below.

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Categories: World

World Full Year 2013: Now with Top 20 biggest manufacturers!

March 18th, 2014 21 comments

Toyota Corolla World 2013The new generation Corolla helped Toyota keeps its worldwide crown in 2013.

* See the Top 20 best-selling manufacturers by clicking on the title! *

In 2013, 84.1 million new vehicles found a buyer worldwide which is a new all-time record, up 5% on 2012 and actually the 4th consecutive record-breaking year for worldwide vehicle sales. Toyota has seen its global sales gain 2.9% year-on-year in 2013 to 9.98 million units (including subsidiaries Hino Motors and Daihatsu), placing the group at #1 in the world for the 2nd year in a row after losing the top spot in 2011 following natural disasters in Asia which crippled production. General Motors previously held the worldwide pole position from 1931 to 2007, with Toyota taking over from 2008-2010. Toyota predicts a 3.4% increase for its worldwide sales in 2014 to reach 10.32 million.

VW Scirocco World 2013. Picture courtesy of motoringme.comVW Scirocco. The Volkswagen Group is the 2nd biggest car manufacturer in the world.

A bit of controversy for the 2nd place: some sources mention General Motors, however Volkswagen is up 5% and one spot to rank #2 this year at 9.73 million sales, including its heavy commercial vehicle brands Man and Scania. Volkswagen is also on target to pass the 10 million unit-mark in 2014, whereas it originally sets itself to reach this target in 2018! The VW nameplate saw its sales up 3% to 5.93 million, Audi is up 8.3% to 1.58 million, Skoda down 2% to 920,800, Seat up 10.6% to 355,000 and Porsche up 15% to 162,145.

2015 GMC Yukon Denali2015 GMC Yukon. General Motors lost the #2 spot worldwide to Volkswagen in 2013.

General Motors is third with 9.71 million sales, up 4% on 2012. The Chevrolet brand is up 0.4% to 4.98 million sales, Opel/Vauxhall is down 0.4% to 1.064 million, Buick up 15% to 1.03 million thanks to China and Cadillac up 28% to 250,830 units. GM doesn’t detail other brands which include its participation in Chinese SAIC Wuling and total 2.4 million sales for the year (+10%).

The Renault-Nissan Group remains in 4th position with sales up 2% to 8.26 million, split as follows: 5.1 million for Nissan, 2.63 million for Renault-Dacia-Samsung and 0.53 million for Avtovaz (aka Lada). Hyundai-Kia stays 5th but is catching up with the Top 4 thanks to sales up a very impressive 6.5% on 2012 to 7.56 million units. The Top 5 biggest car manufacturing groups in the world account for over one in every 2 vehicles sold worldwide (53.5%).

2015 Ford F-150 World 20132015 Ford F-150. Ford is the biggest gainer in the Top 10 with sales up 10%.

Now without Mercury, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo, Ford won’t ever play with big boys anymore, but is however up an astounding 10% in 2013 to 6.25 million sales thanks to excellent performances in China (+49%) and the US (+11%) and in spite of lukewarm sales in Europe. Fiat-Chrysler is up 3.6% to rank 7th with 4.35 million sales, with the balance leaning more and more towards the American operations of the group: Chrysler is at 2.6 million units vs. 1.75 for Fiat. Honda is catching up: +7.3% to 4.1 million sales in 8th place. PSA Peugeot Citroen is one of only two major groups to see its sales fall over the period: down 4.9% to 2.82 million units at #9.

BMW 4 Series World 2013BMW is the best-selling premium car manufacturer in the world at #11 and 1.92 million units.

Just outside the Top 10, two premium German manufacturers beat their all-time record sales in 2013: BMW is up 6.4% to 1.92 million units and Daimler is up 10% to 1.56 million sales. In the premium brand race, the BMW brand is world leader in 2013 with 1.66 million sales (+7.5%) ahead of Audi at 1.58 million (+8.3%) and Mercedes at 1.46 million (+10.7%). For all 3 brands, these are all-time annual record sales!

Geely Worldwide 2013Geely is the biggest Chinese manufacturer at #16 globally.

Back to the global manufacturing ranking with Tata Motors, owner of Jaguar-Land Rover, the last manufacturer above 1 million worldwide sales at #15 (1.04 million) thanks to record sales for the two British brands (425.000). Note the Top 15 manufacturers account for 86% of worldwide sales. In 16th place with have the first Chinese manufacturer, Geely, totalling 977.358 units: 549.518 for the Geely brand (+14%) and 427.840 for Volvo (+1.4%) with the Swedish manufacturer up 46% in China but down 10% in the US. The next most popular Chinese manufacturers are ChangAn (840.000), Great Wall (754.000), BYD and Chery (480.000).

Previous year: World Full Year 2012: Global sales at a record 80 million new vehicles

Full Year 2013 Top 19 manufacturers Ranking Table below.

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Categories: World

What future for French manufacturers? (Part 2)

February 28th, 2014 10 comments

DS5 LS China 2014DS5 LS. The DS brand is separate from Citroen in China.

* Check out Part One of this Special Report on French manufacturers here *

This is Part 2 of my special feature on the future of French manufacturers. You can see Part 1 here. After evaluating both French manufacturers PSA and Renault through their European sales, overseas sales, international alliances and low cost models, we continue on this study of what lies ahead for French carmakers by going through 3 additional elements of comparison.

5. Luxury segment

What luxury segment? Exactly. This is one of the 10 things I don’t understand in the automobile world today. After a golden age when Delage, Delahaye, Panhard and other Bugatti were the pinnacle of refinement, nowadays French manufacturers have all but given up on luxury. Heck even Bugatti is now owned by Volkswagen along with Porsche, Lamborghini and Bentley… Thing is, when managed well, the luxury segment is extremely profitable and a luxury brand can do wonders to help a mass manufacturer survive and thrive. In almost any other luxury category, the French are masters of the universe. Chanel perfume, Louis Vuitton bags, Moët & Chandon champagne, Hermès scarves and Louboutin heels continue to rack up stratospheric sales and churn billions of dollars, but in the automotive world French luxury has gone missing. Surely if Victoria Beckham can design the interior of a Range Rover Evoque, the French can do better.

1938 Delahaye 1351938 Delahaye 135

Both Renault (Vel Satis anyone?) and Peugeot have given up, leaving to Citroen the task of getting back into luxury with its DS sub-brand, launched as a separate brand in China last year. Sales of DS models are plateauing in Europe at 110,554 units in 2013, down 6% on 2012. On one hand, that’s as much as Land Rover, which is not bad, on the other hand, Audi, BMW & Mercedes all outsell DS by 6 to 1 and are either stable or improving in a deflated market. The DS3 is the only DS model to gain ground in 2013 at +2% while the DS4 is down 14% and the DS5 down 17%.

DS WILD RUBY

If not in Europe, where can DS be successful? In China of course! PSA hopes the DS brand will improve its profitability there and has kicked off the local production of the DS5 last October through a new joint-venture with ChangAn. But really, what the Chinese want is a souped up luxury SUV like the DSX Wild Rubis. I have said it before and I will say it again. Bring this gem on, fast. It will sell like hot cakes in China and the whole of Asia. Thanks.

6. Perceived quality

We are now entering a very subjective domain and I will be quoting La Tribune here. Renault has come a long way to now manufacture cars considered as reliable, however its less recent models (Mégane, Laguna, Latitude and Koleos) are often perceived by consumers as dull, sad and charmless in spite of their robust diesel engines and handling qualities. The new Clio IV and Captur have won over many hearts, mainly due to their daring design, however car magazines often criticise the poor quality of the materials blatantly showing cost reduction at play.

Renault Clio IV. Picture courtesy of hamms.ruRenault Clio IV

PSA is in a different place at the moment, with its recently launched Peugeot 2008, 308, 508, Citroen C4 Picasso and C-Cactus hitting the mark in both the design and driving pleasure aspects. The DS line, albeit a little controversial with car experts, also helps with the perceived quality of the Group. All of this is good and well but the large majority of the models mentioned above are very little known outside of Europe where the large bulk of sales are happening with either the low-cost range for Renault or older models like the first generations C4 and 308 (in China) or 206+ (in South America) for Peugeot. So PSA needs to bring these new models in fast if they want their perceived quality to not be stuck in the nineties in emerging markets.

Audi A5Can PSA pull an Audi with the DS brand?

7. Brand differentiation

Having worked in advertising in my previous life, this is my pet fave. As car manufacturing groups, PSA and Renault must have a clear and differentiated positioning for each of their brands in order to be as profitable as possible. Case in point is the Volkswagen Group, to me one of the best examples of very effective brand differentiation. In their stable of brands, perhaps only Seat is still finding its bearings, but Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda, Porsche, Bentley, Lamborghini and Bugatti all have a crystal clear positioning and rarely compete with each other, avoiding cannibalisation. This enables the group to progressively increase each model’s price and pull each brand up while reducing production costs by using the same platform for dozens of models, resulting in exponential profitability. To the point where there is now room below Skoda to introduce a low-cost brand that would undercut Dacia.

It seems simple when it’s well done, but this is a bloody hard task.

Dacia Logan 2004The first generation 2004 Dacia Logan…

Let’s look at Renault first. I have to admit I wasn’t a fan of selling Dacias in the same showroom as Renaults as I couldn’t for the life of me understand how someone could leave with a Kangoo for the price of two Dokkers. However careful observation and many dialogues with consumers and dealers have made me realise that Renault has actually managed to differentiate Dacia completely from its main brand, while still helping its success by ‘guaranteeing’ it (Dacia by Renault). It’s simple: Renault competes with other mass brands and Dacia competes with used cars, not with Renault. When it becomes tricky is where Renault sells Dacia models under the Renault brand, for example in Russia and South America.

Renault Logan Brazil. Picture courtesy of Quatrorodas.com.br…and the current Brazilian Renault Logan

Here too my opinion has changed, having travelled to both these areas of the world where a new car is still very aspirational. To better understand how Renault was right to not launch the Dacia brand in emerging markets, you have to give up your Western European mind and understand that a Renault Logan is actually not a low cost car there. It competes at the core of the market, alongside antediluvian Chevrolets that have been in production for 20 years (Brazil) or against cheaper Chinese cars (Russia). Launching a new brand would have been way too risky and expensive. Now tthis is where I disagree with most car websites and analysts: selling the Logan, Sandero and Duster DOES NOT hurt the Renault brand in emerging markets, in fact it cements an image of honest, robust cars that don’t trick you with fluffy accessories and that you can rely on. A good car.

I bet you didn’t expect that. My opinion is Renault has managed to pull the trick of launching a low-cost range in both sophisticated and emerging markets while increasing that range’s profitability without hurting the main brand too much. No other manufacturer in the world has been able to do this yet, so well done.

Citroen C4 CactusCitroen is now positioned as ‘practical’ and the C4 Cactus is the emblem of this new philosophy.

Now onto PSA. Since the eighties, Peugeot and Citroen have basically been selling the same models with a (sometime not so) different look. Recently, PSA announced a new positioning for their brands: Citroen will do ‘practical’ cars with its C range, and the C4 Cactus is the emblem of this new philosophy, Peugeot will go a little up-market to be ‘semi premium’ and compete with Volkswagen and the DS range, which could (should) become a brand on its own in Europe, is premium. We saw in Part 1 of this Report that a new low-cost brand, Dongfeng’s Fengshan, could well insert itself at the bottom of this ladder.

Yes I know this makes years of Citroen World Rally Car investments redundant, but whether you currently agree with this positioning choice or not is besides the point. What will make or break this strategy is decades (yes, decades) of consistently acting it. Whether it be Citroen’s new positioning or DS’ one, but it will be harder for DS. Look at Audi: in the early seventies it was Volkswagen’s poor parent. It took almost 40 years to the VAG Group to get Audi to where it is right now. PSA should not expect the DS brand to achieve the same success in less time. It will take a long, long time and a lot of money to establish a new premium brand in the automotive world, but it is possible. Carlos Tavares agrees and said “remaking the Citroen DS sub-brand into a full-fledged marque that can compete with the likes of Audi and other luxury automakers may take two decades.”

Renault 2013 Financial results

PSA 2013 Financial resultsRenault and PSA 2013 Financial results (Click to enlarge)

Conclusion

But are French manufacturers currently making money? Renault made a €1.2 billion profit in 2013 mainly thanks to Nissan, (see its full 2013 Financial results here) and PSA made a €560 million loss (Full 2013 Financial results here). Which makes PSA’s €3 billion capital increase to Dongfeng and the French state announced last week all the more welcome. Had I written this article a couple of years ago, I would have had not much hope of survival for either manufacturer. But both Renault and PSA, albeit in very different situations regarding their alliances with other manufacturers and with very different strategies, seem to have faced the inevitable and acted upon it, gearing themselves up for battle in the coming 5 years. I don’t see any of them disappearing in the near future. The two Carlos (Ghosn and Tavares) are unbeliveably smart chief officers that know how to steer the behemoths that are Renault and PSA in the right direction.

Dongfeng Joyear X5 2014Dongfeng Joyear X5. Dongfeng is one of the keys to PSA’s success in China.

In particular, finally both French carmakers are putting money into China and this is where their future survival and profitability lies. Will the DS brand succeed? Will Renault get to the same level as Nissan in a decade? Can Dongfeng help Peugeot expand get to the next level? Is Fengshan the new Dacia? So many exciting questions, such exciting times.

Check out Part One of this Special Report on French manufacturers here *

Categories: World

Strategy: What future for French manufacturers?

February 28th, 2014 10 comments

Dongfeng Fengshan H30 Cross. Picture courtesy of hbsocar.comDongfeng Fengshan H30 Cross. PSA could use Dongfeng’s Fengshan brand as its low-cost option.

* Check out Part 2 of this Special Report on French manufacturers here *

Lately there has been a lot of talk, speculation, and actual structural changes within both French car manufacturers, Renault and PSA Peugeot-Citroen, with notably Carlos Tavares switching from one manufacturer to the other over the past year. Being French this is close to my heart and I thought it would be timely to take stock and evaluate what lies in the future for these two French manufacturers, based on a few points of comparison. Over the past years, both manufacturers have suffered from the European car market’s weakness, but even there they seem to be slowly turning around notably thanks to the arrival of the Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008. Alliances, low-cost models, strength in different markets… Which is best placed for survival and long-term profitability?

PSA Renault Top 15 worldwide marketsPSA and Renault’s Top 15 worldwide markets (click to enlarge) Source: L’Argus

1. European sales

With two established brands, Peugeot and Citroen, PSA is above the Renault Group in Europe. The Peugeot brand alone even passed the Renault brand last month. Over the Full Year 2013, PSA held 11% of the European market thanks to 1.34 million sales, 741,939 for Peugeot and 603,080 for Citroen. Renault for its part holds 8.85% of the market thanks to 1.09 million units sold: 803,166 for Renault and 290,078 for Dacia, by far the fastest growing major brand on the continent last year at +22%. And here is where the long-term trends show we may be on the verge of a change in leadership somewhere in the next few years…

Renault Captur. Picture courtesy of largus.frThe Renault Captur is about to become one of Europe’s 10 best-selling cars.

PSA went from 15% share in 2003 to 13% in 2007 to 11% this year. Renault went from 10.6% in 2003 to 8.6% in 2007 to 8.85% in 2013, managing to stabilise its share recently thanks to the growing success of Dacia (0% in 2003 to 2.3% in 2013). The launch of the Peugeot 2008, new generation 308 and Renault Captur in 2013, all candidates for a European Top 10 ranking in 2014, will potentially reinforce both brands, but Dacia’s progression seems unstoppable, especially on the back of a very successful launch in the UK last year.

2. Success outside of Europe

France is still both manufacturers’ biggest market. For the first time in the history of the carmaker, over 50% of Renault’s sales now occur outside of Europe, to be compared with 42% for PSA. China, the biggest car market in the world, will pass France to become PSA’s #1 market in 2014 after its sales in the country gained 26% in 2013 to 546,200 units. Renault will only start manufacturing cars in China, the key to strong sales there, later this year after its joint-venture with local carmaker Dongfeng got approved last December, which means we won’t see a significant impact on Renault’s sales in China before 2015-2016. If PSA has a clear advantage in China, Renault dominates its French rival in all other major developing markets.

Renault Duster. Picture courtesy of zr.ruThe Renault Duster was the third best-selling vehicle in Russia last month.

In Brazil, with two brands, PSA sells 40% less than Renault with one brand and less models. Renault makes a profit there, Peugeot doesn’t. In Russia, Renault sells 3 times as many vehicles as PSA, almost exclusively (85%) the Duster, Logan and Sandero sold under the Renault brand, meaning it is very profitable there while Peugeot loses money. Renault’s takeover of Avtovaz/Lada, finalised this year, means it will control almost 25% of the Russian market in 2014, just above 650,000 units. Finally in India, Renault has made enormous progress over the past year, solely due to the success of the Duster there, while PSA has cancelled its project of selling there because of a lack of cash.

Carlos GhosnCarlos Ghosn

3. International alliances

Following a failed takover of US manufacturer AMC in the eighties, and of Volvo in the nineties, Renault forged a strong alliance with Nissan in 1999, of which it currently owns 43.4%. With Carlos Ghosn at the helm of both brands, the Renault-Nissan alliance has been a rare example of a truly successful international cooperation in the car manufacturing industry. Owner at 100 of Romanian carmaker Dacia and at 80% of Korean Samsung, Renault is now taking over Avtovaz/Lada, ensuring it a very strong presence in Russia (see above).

Lately, Renault-Nissan started a new cooperation with Mitsubishi which means a Renault model – the replacement for the Latitude, produced in South Korea – will hit US shores for the first time since 1987, albeit sold as a Mitsubishi. Finally Renault’s Chinese joint-venture with Dongfeng was approved last December. Yep, this is where it gets a little embroiled: Dongfeng currently has manufacturing joint-ventures in China with both PSA (since 1992), Nissan (since 2003) and Renault (since 2013).

Nissan Maxima USA. Picture courtesy of motortrend.comUS Nissan Maxima. Renault compensates its current absence in the USA by the strength of Nissan.

A lot of brands and alliances involved, but Carlos Ghosn has kept a clear focus on high potential markets. Renault has long been criticised for ‘giving up’ the US and not being present in China. However, once again according to Carlos Ghosn, this is compensated by Nissan’s strength in both markets: Nissan sells almost twice as many cars in the US as it does in Japan and has become the best-selling Japanese carmaker in China only 10 years after launching there, here too selling more than in Japan already. Point taken Carlos. Hopefully Renault can reach the same level by 2024.

Peugeot 4008 Mongolia LaunchPeugeot launched in 13 Asian countries over the past 18 months (here Mongolia)

PSA traditionally preferred one-off technical cooperations without alliances (with Fiat, Renault, Toyota, BMW, Ford…). Philippe Varin, who is about to be replaced at the head of the Group by Carlos Tavares, tried to negotiate ‘true’ alliances which have failed so far: first with Mitsubishi, then more spectacularly with General Motors which took a 7% stake in 2012 and forced Peugeot to stop assembling cars in Iran, costing it precious revenue over the past couple of years. We will have to wait until 2016 to see real economies of scale for the Peugeot-General Motors alliance, when the two partners are scheduled to produce 700,000 annual vehicles together, saving $1.2 billion a year split between Opel and PSA from 2018 onwards.

Peugeot 2008 China 2014The Dongfeng-PSA joint-venture will produce the 2008 in China later this year.

Finally last week, 12 years after launching a manufacturing joint-venture with Chinese automaker Dongfeng to produce cars locally, PSA unveiled a $4 billion capital increase in which Dongfeng and the French state will each get a 14% stake. The founding Peugeot family’s holding will fall to 14% from its current 25% stake and 38% of voting rights, short of the 33% required to veto decisions. This reinforced alliance has left some experts skeptical, as vastly divergent interests between PSA, Dongfeng and the French state could create more instability for the carmaker.

However this is a very welcome cash injection for PSA that will enable it to pursue aggressive development plans in Asia where the brand has launched in no less than 13 countries over the past 18 months, as I described in my recent article about Peugeot’s Mongolian operations. PSA also has a joint-venture with Changan since 2012 to produce up-scale DS models locally, which we will analyse in more detail in the “Luxury segment” section of this feature article.

Dacia Logan II. Picture courtesy of largus.frDacia Logan II

4. Low cost cars

This is potentially where the two French manufacturers’ strategies differ the most at the moment. A total precursor in this domain, Renault launched the low cost Dacia Logan in 2004, originally for emerging markets only but eventually for Western Europe as well. Fast-forward 10 years and Renault has produced over 5 million units of its low cost range, including one million in 2013 alone, in every corner of the globe. Standardisation and simplification are pushed to the extreme, with significantly lower manufacturing costs resulting in a very impressive 10% profit margin for the Duster for example, even though it is sold at a dirt cheap price. Renault has also used its low-cost learnings to relaunch Datsun as Nissan’s entry range.

Peugeot 301 Spain production. Picture courtesy of betterparts.orgThe Peugeot 301 is currently produced in Spain and China.

PSA has not launched any low-cost models yet. The Peugeot 301 and Citroen C-Elysée are produced in Spain for Eastern European and African markets and in Wuhan for the Chinese market, and PSA insists they are not low-cost. The 301 has been met with outstanding success in Northern Africa last year: #2 in Algeria, #5 in Tunisia and #10 in Morocco with worldwide sales for the couple hitting 100,000 in 2013 and a predicted 250,000 for 2014. Profit-wise, a PSA internal source confessed to La Tribune that “margins are virtually inexistent, we aren’t even sure we will ever make a profit on these models”. Which may not matter too much in the first place. With the 301, Peugeot is regaining a foot in Africa, a continent it had abandoned (to my bafflement) but where it still benefits from an extremely strong brand image. And a continent with a huge, untapped growth potential.

Finally, and this is potentially the most interesting development and the biggest question mark so far, its new reinforced alliance with Dongfeng could potentially spark PSA’s real landing in the low cost world. Two sides of the story: first, a 4th Chinese factory is planned by the PSA-Dongfeng joint-venture, and it would be dedicated to the production of Dongfeng’s entry models, branded Fengshan. Second, there has been talk of yet another new factory dedicated to low-cost models and located this time at the periphery of Europe. It doesn’t take too much thinking to guess the logical next step: PSA using the Fengshan brand as its low-cost offering, a la “Dacia by Renault”. This would definitely be a clever outcome of the alliance with Dongfeng, as Peugeot’s ‘guarantor’ role could alleviate European consumers’ pre-conceived ideas about China-manufactured cars, as Renault did with Romanian vehicles.

Check out Part 2 of this Special Report on French manufacturers here *

Sources: La Tribune, Autonews (1), Autonews (2), L’Argus.

Categories: Featured Category, World

World 2013 – The 20 biggest car markets: China, Indonesia, Australia & Argentina hit records

January 31st, 2014 2 comments

Bali Indonesia Picture courtesy of stefan.bernsmann via FlickrIndonesia is at an all-time high for the 4th year running. Photo © stefan.bernsmann.

* See the Top 20 biggest car markets in the world in 2013 by clicking on the title! *

To put a little perspective on all the Full Year 2013 data I have been publishing on BSCB over the past month, it is now time for our traditional ‘world Top 20 markets’ summary. The main event in the ranking this year is China becoming the first ever country to purchase over 20 million vehicles in one year, passing that mark on December 1 to finish 2013 at 21.98 million units. That’s a huge 14% improvement on 2012 in spite of all the car purchase restrictions now in place in all the main cities in the country, which put the 30 million units predicted for 2020 well on target.

Shanghai night traffic. Picture courtesy of Jacqtai via FlickrIn 2013, China became the first ever car market to pass 20 million annual units. Photo © Jacqtai.

The second big worldwide car market trend this year is the ‘panting’ of the 3 behemoths once called emerging markets: Brazil experiences its first year-on-year decline in a decade, down 2% to 3.58 million units, Russia is down 5% to 2.78 million and India is down a surprising 7% to 2.47 million. Most big European markets are also a little sad: Germany is down 4%, France down 6% to its lowest in 15 years and Italy down 7%.

Sydney Australia 2013 Picture courtesy of jordie23 via FlickrSecond consecutive all-time record year for Australia. Photo © jordie23.

Reversely and continuing a trend observed in 2012, all main saturated Anglo-Saxon markets are going gangbusters, clearly proving they are not quite saturated just yet: the US is up 8% to 15.6 million sales, its highest level in 7 years, the UK is up an astounding 11% in a depressed European context to 2.26 million units, Canada is up 4% to 1.74 million and Australia is up 3% to deliver a second consecutive all-time record year at 1.14 million sales.

Buenos Aires 2013. Picture courtesy of piper969 via FlickrArgentina is with China the fastest growing market in the Top 20. Photo © piper969.

Thailand was the superstar in 2012 when it gained 81% to reach 1.44 million units, but it paid the price this year: down 6% to 1.35 million but still #12 market in the world. Two additional countries reach all-time high levels in 2013: Indonesia lodges a 4th consecutive record year, going from 486,088 sales in 2009 to 1.23 million this year, and Argentina is the fastest growing market in the Top 20 along with China, up 14% to a best-ever 955,023 units. The demise of Iran (-28%) means Spain is back within the Top 20 at #20.

One year ago: World 2012 – The Top 20 biggest car markets: Thailand shoots up!

Two years ago: World 2011 – The 20 biggest car markets: Russia on the up!

Full Year 2013 Top 20 biggest car markets in the world below.

Read more…

Categories: World

My 50 questions for 2014

January 1st, 2014 10 comments

DS WILD RUBYCitroen DSX Wild Rubis

* You can check out the entire 50 questions by clicking on the title and the answers to my 50 questions for 2013 here *

With a new year come new interrogations about how the car sales world will evolve, and as is the tradition on BestSellingCarsBlog I have selected 50 questions for 2014, let’s meet here in 365 days to find out how these turned out. What are your questions for 2014? Let us all know by commenting on here. So here goes:

1. Will both the Chinese and US car market continue to grow fast? Which one will be the fastest and will China still be on track to hit 30 millions sales by 2020?

2. Best-selling car in the world: Toyota Corolla or Ford Focus?

3. Will the DS brand be a success in China?

4. Which manufacturer will top worldwide sales? Will it still be Toyota? Can General Motors or Volkswagen grow faster?

Datsun GoDatsun Go

5. Will the Datsun Go and Go+ succeed?

6. Will Qoros manage solid sales both at home in China and in Europe?

7. Will Tesla continue to grow or was 2013 a one-off performance?

8. Can either the Peugeot 2008 or Renault Captur break into the monthly European Top 10?

9. Will we still witness the ‘low cost or premium’ trend in European car sales?

Saab logo

10. Will Saab really revive? Will Opel survive? Will another car manufacturer disappear from the US? worldwide?

11. Will any pick-up truck manage to threaten the Ford F-Series in the US? Chevrolet Silverado? Toyota Tundra?

12. Can any passenger car come close to the Toyota Camry in the US? Will Ford’s high expectations for the Fusion materialise?

13. Can Renault stabilise Lada sales at home in Russia?

14. Can the new generation Nissan Qashqai push the nameplate into the monthly European Top 5?

15. Can the Skoda Octavia go higher than #5 in Europe? The BMW 3 Series higher than #4 and the Audi A3 higher than #6?

Renault Captur Netherlands August 2013Will the Renault Captur break into the European monthly Top 10 in 2014?

16. Will there be any newcomers inside the European Top 10 in 2014 apart from potentially the Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008?

17. Will Italy bottom out or fall further into recession?

18. Can the European new car market grow again?

19. Will Brazil, India and Russia get back into positive territory?

20. Can Renault become Argentina’s best-selling brand in the long term?

Carely EVFAW VW Carely EV

21. Which major markets will be the fastest growing?

22. Will any new low-cost brand be launched worldwide?

23. Will Honda drop the Ciimo and Linian low-cost brands in China? Will GM’s Baojun and Nissan’s Venucia continue to grow? How will FAW VW’s Carely fare?

24. Can the 301 re-establish Peugeot in Africa in the long-term?

25. Will the VW Up! range expand as well as its sales?

Check out the remaining 25 questions below.

Read more…

Categories: World

World: The Top 10 highlights of 2013

December 31st, 2013 1 comment

China traffic jam. Picture by National GeographicFor the first time in history, more than 20 million new vehicles were sold annual in a single country…

On this last day of the year, I thought it would be appropriate to pick my Top 10 highlights for 2013 in terms of worldwide sales. Do you agree? Do you have more highlights? Please let us all know by commenting on this article.

1. China becomes first country above 20 million sales

As of end November, 19.9 million new light vehicles had found a buyer in China, a 12% increase over 2012 and a new record. This also means that the 20 million unit-mark was passed in the first days of December, making China the first country in the history of automobile to clock over 20 million new car sales in a single year. It is predicted China will cross another milestone, the 30 million sales one, by 2020… The significant trend in the Chinese passenger car market in 2013 is the return to grace of local models: the Wuling Hongguang, newly moved out of the LCV category, leads the overall ranking at end November, while the Haval (ex-Great Wall) H6 reached a record 7th place in July and the Emgrand EC7 double-dipped in the Top 10…

2014 GMC Sierra Dynamic front three quarterThe US are back to their old habits: buying pick-up trucks in droves.

2. US market back to pre-recession levels

2013 is the year the US market returned to its pre-recession levels and habits: buying over 15 million new light vehicles annually including heaps of pick-up trucks. In May, with 71,604 sales the Ford F-Series crossed the 70,000 monthly units milestone for the first time since March 2007, hitting its best May figure since 2005 and its best month overall in almost 7 years, since August 2006 when it sold 76,804 units… In June, the SAAR (Seasonally Adjusted Annual Sales Rate), a key barometer of long-term sales trends, surged to just under 16 million, compared to 14.4 million a year ago, officially bringing the industry back to its late 2007 level. Finally in October, for the first time since February 2006, the top 3 most popular vehicles in the USA are all XXL pick-up trucks. The Ford F-Series leads,followed by the Chevrolet Silverado and the RAM 1500/3500. In the same vein, the Ford F-Series had already beaten the all-time annual sales record in Canada by end October at 106,861 sales.

Tesla Model S Norway September 2013. Picture courtesy of motortrend.com P2The Tesla Model S incredibly topped the Norwegian models ranking in September.

3. Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf superstars in Norway

Norway was the theatre of a couple of amazing sales events in 2013. In September, the Model S did what no electric car ever managed before in the world: finish a month in pole position in any country. Selling an incredible 616 units for a 5.1% market share vs. 561 and 4.6% for the VW Golf, the Model S is the first model to beat the VW Golf in a Norwegian monthly ranking so far in 2013. With notoriety comes criticism and Tesla has had to endure the repercussions of a couple of its models setting fire after an accident, which didn’t prevent it to place the Model S back up to a huge 2nd spot in Norway in November! The other big winner in Norway is the Nissan Leaf: it topped the sales charts in October thanks to 716 units for a splendid 5.6% market share!

Peugeot 2008 Renault Captur World July 2013. Picture courtesy of LargusA big tick of approval for the Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008 in 2013.

4. Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008 revive French manufacturers

A lot was relying on the two new French mini SUVs this year as both manufacturers had been struggling profit-wise since the global financial crisis. And both hit the market on the nail. The Renault Captur brilliantly broke into the French Top 5 for the first time in June at #4 and has not left it since, peaking at #3 in September. For its part the Peugeot 2008 was among the 10 most popular cars in France in July for the first time before stepping up to #4 in October and remaining there in November. Both models have also garnered solid sales figures all through Europe, with the Captur sometimes even passing the Clio IV and the 2008 passing the 208! I’m betting on one of them breaking into the overall European Top 10 briefly in 2014.
Daihatsi Ayla Indonesia November 2013Daihatsu Ayla

5. Toyota minis succeed in Indonesia

The minis Toyota Agya and Daihatsu Ayla twins were launched ‘under the radar’ in September in Indonesia as Toyota’s answer to a new government law. In a country obsessed by low cost MPV, it was a daring move indeed. The Low Cost Green Car (LCGC) regulation exempts from the luxury tax models made up from at least 60% domestic components, priced between Rp 50-85 million with a maximum displacement of 1,200cc and fuel efficiency of at least 20 km/l. Only two months after their first appearance in the Indonesian sales charts, in November the Toyota Agya is up to an incredible 2nd place with 6,591 sales and 5.9% share, up 2 ranks and over one percentage point on its October score. Its twin the Daihatsu Ayla is up one spot to #4 with 5,095 sales and 4.6%, its best so far as well. This means the two locally produced models already account for over 10% of the Indonesian new car market, only two months after launch! 2014 scores will be fascinating to follow indeed.

Nissan Qashqai World 20132014 Nissan Qashqai. The new model should improve the nameplate’s sales further in 2014.

6. Nissan SUVs continue to conquer Europe

In 2013 Nissan confirmed it has changed the car market forever with its Qashqai and Juke SUVs… The Qasqhai reached a record overall #5 spot in Europe in February, up 4% year-on-year in a market down 10% in spite of its 6 years of age, and remained #5 in March thanks to a massive 29,116 sales, delivering the highest ever ranking for a Japanese model in the continent. The Qashqai also broke its ranking, volume and share records in Italy in March at #6 and became only the 2nd Japanese model to ever crack the monthly French Top 10 in March at #9, repeating this feat in May at #10 and equalling the French-produced Toyota Yaris which did so in January and March 2007. The smaller Nissan Juke, also produced in the UK, also reaches new heights in 2013: it breaks into the UK Top 10 for the very first time in January (#9) and manages that feat 3 more times during the year! It ranks #10 in February, #9 in July before hitting a record 7th position in October. The Juke also breaks into the Spanish Top 10 for the first time ever at #9.

Hyundai HB20 Brazil February. Picture courtesy of Carplace

7. The Hyundai HB20 invades Brazil

Launched in late 2012, the Hyundai HB20 reached a record 4th place in Brazil in February thanks to 10,179 sales, the first time a Korean model manages to sell over 10,000 monthly units win Brazil and the first Korean model to ever rank within the Brazilian monthly Top 5. The HB20 broke its monthly volume and share records one more time in March to 12,537 units and 5.6% share. Unveiled at the same time, the Chevrolet Onix reaches a very similar sales level over 2013.

Renault Duster Russia October 2012Renault Duster

8. Success of Renault’s low-cost range

2013 confirmed Renault is definitely on the right track with its low-cost range inaugurated by the Logan back in 2004. Sold under the Dacia or Renault brands depending on the country, the most successful models of the range this year were the Duster and Sandero, breaking records and passing significant milestones across the planet. Notably, the Duster climbed onto the Russian monthly podium for the first time in November and ranked inside the Indian Top 10 for two consecutive months. For its part the Sandero took the overall lead in Spain in January & August and jumped inside the French podium in July and August for only the second and third times ever, the firsts for this generation.

Peugeot 301 Algeria June 2013. Picture courtesy of auto-utilitaire.comPeugeot 301

9. Is Peugeot back to Africa?

Why the French (and specifically Peugeot) lost the African continent is one of the 10 things I don’t understand… in the worldwide car industry today. Well this dumbfounding fact may be about to be overturned thanks to the success of the Peugeot 301, conceived specifically for emerging markets. After 10 months in 2013, the 301 ranks #2 below only the Dacia Logan in Algeria with just under 20,000 sales and #5 in Tunisia, while it managed a 4th place in Egypt in July. Could these performances signal the rebirth of Peugeot in Africa?

Audi A3 2013. Picture courtesy of L'Argus

10. The Audi A3 and Skoda Octavia break new ground in Europe

This year Audi places a second model inside the monthly overall European Top 10: the A3 is among Europe’s top 10 most popular cars in April at #9 thanks to 16,787 sales. Before the A3, only the A4 managed to rank inside the European Top 10, peaking at #2 in August 2008. But the A3 didn’t stop there: thanks to an all-time high 2nd place in Germany, it hit a record 6th spot Europe-wide in August and #2 in its segment behind only the VW Golf and above the Ford Focus and Opel Astra. A lot of records in 2013 for a 17 year-old nameplate!

Skoda Octavia World October 2013Skoda Octavia

The other VAG Group model (re)launched in 1996 to break new ground in Europe this year is the Skoda Octavia, jumping into the Top 5 best-sellers for the first time in October and repeating this performance in November, whereas it had only managed two lonely European Top 10 rankings in the past (in January 2012 and last August when it both ranked #10). This is the first time a Skoda ranks inside the European Top 5, with the only other Skoda to achieve a Top 10 finish being the Skoda Fabia (#10 in August 2008 and #8 in August 2009). In other Skoda news, the Czech brand managed to place its entire range (7 models!) inside the Top 10 at home in Czech Republic for the first time in history.

What are your worldwide sales highlights for 2013? Comment on here to let us all know.

Categories: World