Russia July 2015: Now with Top 100 best-sellers (BSCB exclusive)

August 27th, 2015 No comments

Ford Fiesta Russia July 2015. Picture courtesy zr.ruFord has just relaunched the Fiesta in Russia, aiming at the Hyundai Solaris and VW Polo.

* See the Top 100 best-selling models by clicking on the title *

Today we can share with you exclusively on BSCB rare detailed monthly data for Russia for July. The familiar Top 25 now includes the two best-selling Light Commercial Vehicles in the country, and they are pumped up this month: the GAZ Gazelle ranks 7th with 2.7% share and the UAZ Bukhanka ranks 12th vs. #26 in H1. Outside, the Chevrolet Aveo (#50 in H1) and Ford Kuga (#67) surge and miss out on a historical Top 25 Russian breakthrough (ex-LCVs) for less than a hundred units. The Mercedes Sprinter enjoys the benefits of its facelift at #40 vs. #61 in H1, and the Chinese are back in a slightly better shape: the Lifan X60 ranks #43 (#49 in H1), the Geely Emgrand 7 is at #53 (#98) and the Geely Emgrand  X7 is at #60 (#108).

UAZ 452 Russia July 2015. Picture courtesy carrental.mnThe UAZ Bukhanka surges up to #12 in Russia this month. 

Lifan X50 Russia July 2015. Picture courtesy news.auto.ruThe Lifan X50 is already among Russia’s 100 most popular nameplates.

Two new launches get themselves noticed this month in Russia The Ford Fiesta was relaunched here as an affordable sedan by the American manufacturer at the same time General Motors is disengaging Chevrolet and Opel from the country. It competes with blockbusters Hyundai Solaris, Kia Rio and VW Polo, all inside the Top 4 this month. The Fiesta breaks into the Russian Top 50 in July at #47 with 547 sales whereas it only sold 159 units (#224) over the First Half of 2015. The Lifan X50 is also climbing the Russian ladder fast: from #262 and 74 units in H1 directly to #75 and 319 sales in July, positioning itself as the 4th best-selling Chinese models in Russia below the 3 aforementioned.

Previous post: Russia 1st Half 2015: Now with Top 360 All-models (BSCB exclusive)

Previous July post: Russia July 2015: Hyundai Solaris and Kia Rio take root above all Ladas

One year ago: Russia July 2014: Renault Logan up to #5, Opel Mokka in Top 25

Full July 2015 Top 100 models Ranking Table below.

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Categories: Russia

Russia 1st Half 2015: Now with Top 360 All-models (BSCB exclusive)

August 27th, 2015 No comments

UAZ Cargo Russia June 2015. Picture courtesy uazbuka.ru335 UAZ Cargo found a new home in Russia over H1 2015.

* See the Top 360 All-models by clicking on the title *

Exclusive to BSCB, we now have access to an All-models ranking for the First Half of 2015 in Russia. Light Commercial Vehicles are now included, which means the GAZ Gazelle finds its way up to 4th place overall with 2.7% share vs. #7 over the Full Year 2014. The rest of the Top 25 stays untouched, with the antediluvian UAZ Bukhanka pointing its bread-loaf head at #26 vs. #33 in 2014. The Daewoo Gentra (#28), Nissan Terrano (#31) and Toyota Land Cruiser Prado (#33) also post much-improved rankings, while the Lexus NX surges to #35 with 5.206 sales or 55% of the brand’s sales in Russia over the period.

Dongfeng Fengshen H30 Russia June 2015. Picture courtesy rdrom.ruThe Dongfeng Fengshen H30 lands at #197.

The Nissan Sentra leaps up to #36 while the BMW X5 (#51), Kia Soul (#52), Mercedes C-Class (#55), Hyundai Elantra (#57), Mercedes S-Class (#63) and GLA (#72), Ford Ecosport (#76) and Range Rover (#80) all make their entry into the Russian Top 100 vs. to their 2014 respective ranking. It’s not a good time to launch new models in Russia with the overall market freefalling 36% to just 782.094 registrations. The Datsun On-DO is the only all-new model inside the Top 130, landing directly at #39 with 0.6% market share, with the next best things being the Land Rover Discovery Sport (#133), Dongfeng H30 (#197), Dongfeng S30 (#218), Ford Fiesta (#223), Lifan X50 (#262) and Brilliance H230 (#286).

Previous post: Russia July 2015: Hyundai Solaris and Kia Rio take root above all Ladas

Original H1 update: Russia 1st Half 2015: Hyundai and Kia winners in damaged market

One year ago: Russia June 2014: Skoda Rapid lands in deteriorating market

Full H1 2015 Top 360 All-models Ranking vs. Full Year 2014 figures below.

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Categories: Russia

Ukraine July 2015: Renault Logan tops recovering market (-21%)

August 27th, 2015 No comments

Renault Logan Ukraine July 2015. Picture courtesy of autocentre.com.uaThe Renault Logan is the best-selling model in Ukraine so far this year.

* See the Top 55 All-brands and Top 316 All-models by clicking on the title *

After a year-long absence, the monthly Ukrainian brands ranking comes back to BSCB. Even though new car sales in Ukraine are down 21% year-on-year in July to 5.344 registrations, it is accurate to speak about recovery. Annihilated by the Crimea crisis, the Ukrainian new car market finished 2014 down 54% to just 97,020 registrations. The start of 2015 was disastrous: January (-78%), February (-81%), March (-79%), April (-61%), May (-47%) and June (-46%) scores were the testimony of a market stopped to an almost standstill. Sales seem to have bottomed up since the 2.259 deliveries of March though, and this July is the first month above 5.000 units since December 2015. Year-to-date, Ukrainian new car sales are down 65% on 2014 and down 80% on 2013 to just 22.547 registrations after 7 months, the equivalent to the March 2013 score alone…

First 7 months monthly registrations 2013-2015 – Ukraine:

UKR Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul
2013 11,989 13,591 22,565 26,115 15,091 14,887 17,984
2014 11,875 15,215 10,964 7,754 5,675 6,209 6,818
2015 2,597 2,924 2,259 3,057 2,994 3,372 5,344

Mazda CX-5 and Mazda6 Ukraine July 2015. Picture courtesy autocentre.com.uaMazda is up 9 spots to #6 so far this year thanks to the CX-5 up to #3 overall.

The brands ranking is once again turned upside down except for the pole position still held by Toyota, improving its market share to 10.3% thanks to sales down ‘just’ 62%. Renault (-36%) gains 5 spots on a year ago to land in 2nd place overall above Nissan (-51%) whereas local manufacturer ZAZ tumbles down 77% in 4th place and Hyundai (-65%) rounds up the Top 5. The most striking implosion comes from Chinese carmaker Geely: down 88% from #1 with 7,485 sales and 11.6% share a year ago to #11 at 862 units and 3.8% now. Bucking the general trend with all their might in the Top 35 are Mazda down just 3% year-on-year and up 9 spots to #6, BMW up 4% and tripling its market share to 3.3% at #12 and Suzuki down 10% to #13.

Suzuki SX4 Ukraine July 2015. Picture courtesy autoconsultant.com.uaSuzuki leaps up to #13 overall thanks to the SX4 and Vitara.

Over in the models ranking, the Renault Logan frankly overtakes the perennial Ukrainian leader the ZAZ Sens to brilliantly snap the overall pole position, up from #3 over the Full Year 2014, while the Mazda CX-5 surges from #24 in 2014 to third overall, the Toyota Camry is up from #15 to #4 and the Skoda Octavia up from #11 to #4. The Kia Sportage, Renault Duster and Nissan X-Trail also manage to climb into the Ukrainian Top 10. Notice also the Renault Sandero (#14), Suzuki SX4 (#15), Mazda3 (#18), BMW X5 (#25) and BMW X6 (#45) lodging much-improved rankings.

BMW X5 Ukraine July 2015. Picture courtesy bit.uaBMW improves its market share 3-fold year-on-year in Ukraine.

The Geely Emgrand 7 freefalls from #2 to #26 but still leads Chinese models above the Chery Tiggo (#32), Geely MK (#40), Geely GC6 (#47), Geely CK (#51) and BYD F3 (#60). The Geely GC7 is the best-selling newcomer for 2015 at #87, followed by the Ford Ecosport (#121), Suzuki Vitara (#132), Land Rover Discovery Sport (#152) and Citroen C4 Cactus (#167).

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

One year ago: Ukraine July 2014: ZAZ and Toyota above Geely

Two years ago: Ukraine July 2013: ZAZ Sens now #1 year-to-date

Full July and 7 months 2015 Top 55 All-brands vs. Full 7 months 2014 data below.

Full 7 months 2015 Top 316 All-models Ranking Table below.

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Categories: Ukraine

Panama 1st Half 2015: Hilux #1, Hyundai catching up on Toyota

August 27th, 2015 No comments

Toyota Hilux Panama June 2015. Picture courtesy cars.co.zaThe Toyota Hilux remains the best-selling vehicle in Panama so far in 2015.

* See the Top 10 best-selling brands and models by clicking on the title *

New car sales in Panama are up a healthy 9% over the First Half of 2015 to 36.263 registrations, and on track to break the 60.000 annual unit-barrier for the 2nd consecutive year. Toyota is once again the most popular carmaker in the country, however its advantage over #2 Hyundai has thinned from almost 7 percentage points a year ago (24.2% share vs. 17.5%) to just 2.4 points so far in 2015. Toyota now holds just 20.4% of the Panamanian market due to sales down 8% while Hyundai is at 18% thanks to deliveries up 13% year-on-year. Kia and Nissan follow, both improving by 15% with Suzuki, up a spectacular 43%, overtakes Honda to round up the Top 5. Isuzu (+21%) and Mitsubishi (+17%) also shine in the Top 10. Model-wise, the Toyota Hilux remains the most popular nameplate in the country, followed by the Kia Rio and Picanto while the Hyundai Elantra re-appears inside the Top 10 at #8.

Previous post: Panama Full Year 2014: Toyota Hilux leads, Yaris shoots up

Full H1 2015 Top 10 brands and models below.

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Categories: Panama

STRATEGY: Why Volkswagen is losing foot in China (Part 2/3)

August 26th, 2015 2 comments

VW Passat China crash test. Picture courtesy auto.sina.com.cnVolkswagen suffers from an over-reliance on its sedan lineup.

See also:

Why Volkswagen is losing foot in China (Part 1/3)

Why Volkswagen is losing foot in China (Part 3/3)

In July the Volkswagen brand dropped 31% year-on-year in China to 152,300 sales (imports excluded). In Part 1 of this Strategy series we studied the first reason behind this fall from grace: the absence in Volkswagen’s lineup of any affordable SUV, a situation that is likely to last until 2018. In Part 2 we look at the second main explanation for this precarious situation.

2. Sedans under attack

In China, the sedan segment describes all passenger cars that are not SUVs or MPVs and therefore also includes hatchbacks, although these are a lot rarer than sedans – three-box-cars – as perceived in Europe. Volkswagen has always excelled in the sedan area. Unfortunately for the German manufacturer, sedans are currently under attack in China and are solely responsible for the unusual market decline this market is experiencing, at -19% year-on-year in July. But if we remove sedans, the Chinese overall sales would be up 19% year-on-year instead of down (see below).

Segment Jul-15 Jul-14 Evo
Sedan 694,069 860,626 -19%
SUV 403,091 286,852 41%
MPV 107,807 117,243 -8%
Microvan 74,300 88,452 -16%
Total SUV/MPV/Microvan 585,198 492,547 19%
Total Passenger Cars 1,279,267 1,353,173 -5%

The imploding of the sedan market is literally unheard of in China, a market that has regularly gained ground year after year for the best part of the past three decades. Right now, an affordable SUV offering is becoming vital for a brand’s sales performance in the #1 market in the world, which is uncharted territory. But as we detailed in Part 1 of this Strategy series, Volkswagen has missed the SUV boat and put all its eggs in the sedan basket with 87% of its sales still happening in the latter segment. If Volkswagen-branded locally assembled cars are down 31% in July, Volkswagen sedans are down an even more depressing 33% year-on-year, going from 197.332 units in July 2014 to just 133.176 last month.

VW Jetta China July 2015Chinese VW Jetta sales are down 43% year-on-year in July.

This is still by far the highest volume for any brand in China in the sedan segment – and overall, but the freefall is real and affects all of Volkswagen’s stars: the Golf (-11%), Lavida (-16%), Sagitar (-36%), Bora (-40%), Santana (-42% despite the arrival of the Gran Santana hatch), Jetta (-43%), Magotan (-44%), Passat, CC (-49%) and Polo (-50%) are all plunging a lot faster than the market. Toyota, Chevrolet and BMW also rely too much on their sedan lineup with up to 85% of their sales still happening in that segment, yet they are not suffering as much as Volkswagen is at the moment. Why are Volkswagen sedans particularly hard-pressed?

Model July sales July evo Price range (yuan) Price range (US$)
Volkswagen models
VW CC 2,101 -49% 252.800-342.800 39.450-53.500
VW Magotan 9,024 -44% 199.800-334.800 31.200-52.200
VW Passat 5,872 -49% 169.800-322.800 26.500-50.400
VW Lamando 6,031 new 145.900-213.900 22.800-33.400
VW Sagitar 17,212 -36% 131.800-225.800 20.600-35.200
VW Golf 12,958 -11% 121.900-238.300 19.000-37.200
VW Lavida 29,425 -16% 112.900-168.900 17.600-26.400
VW Bora 10,489 -40% 107.800-148.300 16.800-23.100
VW Polo 9,528 -50% 85.800-158.900 13.400-24.800
VW Santana 14,840 -42% 84.900-138.900 13.200-21.700
VW Jetta 15,696 -43% 82.800-119.300 12.900-18.600
Chevrolet Sail 9,301 -18% 59.900-73.900 9.300-11.500
Chinese models
Geely GC9 3,200 new 119.800-229.800 18.700-35.900
ChangAn Eado 10,214 -22% 73.900-119.900 11.500-18.700
Geely Emgrand 11,373 107% 69.800-100.800 10.900-15.700
ChangAn V5 2,696 18% 65.900-79.900 10.300-12.500
Brilliance H330 3,025 -35% 65.800-75.800 10.300-11.800
Baojun 630 1,207 -33% 65.800-95.800 10.300-14.900
Great Wall C30 1,096 31% 64.500-83.500 10.100-13.000
Geely Vision 5,921 282% 52.900-65.900 8.250-10.300
BYD F3 6,330 -2% 49.900-70.900 7.800-11.100
ChangAn V3 5,285 26% 43.900-48.900 6.850-7.650
Geely Panda 2,453 98% 37.900-59.900 5.900-9.300

Domestic brands are back

Volkswagen has no offering contained below the symbolic 100.000 yuan price point (US$15.600), when Chevrolet does: the Sail, priced from 59.900 to 73.900 (see above). On the contrary, it is rare to find a Chinese model priced above that same 100.000 yuan barrier. If up until 2014, the price advantage of Chinese manufacturers was justified by poorer quality, reliability and performances, this is becoming less and less true. Sedans are where domestic manufacturers have been lagging behind in recent years, but they are catching up on lost time, and fast.

Geely Vision China 2015. Picture courtesy 91aiche.comVastly improved: the US$ 8.250 Geely Vision.

The most striking example is Geely. As I detailed in my coverage of the 2015 Shanghai Auto Show, Geely models have improved so drastically over the past 12 months than they put Volkswagen fares to shame in some quality aspects. All the while when costing significantly less: the interior quality of the newly revamped Geely Vision (starting price US$ 8.250) has nothing to be ashamed of vs. the much dearer VW Santana (starting price US$13.200)… My words were: “the slow and soft opening of the Geely Vision glovebox is lightyears ahead of a VW Santana glovebox that crashes onto your knee with a flat, hollow and very cheap “clang!”.

Model China starting price US starting price
VW CC US$ 39.450 US$ 33.595
VW Passat US$ 26.500 US$ 20.995
VW Sagitar / Jetta US$ 20.600 US$ 15.695
VW Golf US$ 19.000 US$ 17.995

At the same time, even though all Volkswagen models described in this study are manufactured locally and thus benefit from much lower labour costs as well as the recent devaluation of the Chinese currency, the cars that are also on sale in the U.S. are frankly over-priced in China (see above). In short, Volkswagen has some margin to move down in China when pricing is concerned. In the face of increased competition, miking the Chinese cow will become harder and harder for the German carmaker.

Geely Panda CrossNo foreign competition: the Geely Panda starts at US$ 5.900.

Reliability issues

Has Volkswagen been resting on its laurels in China? Even its low-end Jetta and Santana are priced significantly higher than equivalent Chinese fares, and it looks like they are already truly scraping the bottom of the barrel as far as German quality is concerned. Volkswagen is still the most popular brand for Chinese consumers, one proof being the long queue for VW leaflets at the latest Shanghai Auto Show. But whereas the German brand has sold more than double any other brand each month of the past 30 years it has been present in China, it is not obliterating competition when looking at JD Power Chinese satisfaction surveys (see examples below).

JD Power Sales Satisfaction Index 2015

Both Volkswagen joint-ventures are well below the leaders (#8 and #12) in China’s Sales Satisfaction. Source: J.D. Power Asia Pacific.

JD Power Customer Service Index 2015

Volkswagen also lags behind (#19) in Customer Service Satisfaction… Source: J.D. Power Asia Pacific.

JD Power Initial Quality 2014…but still tops Initial Quality scores (Note: this is not consumer perception). Source: J.D. Power Asia Pacific.

Another element that may have negatively impacted the Chinese customer’s reliability perception of the Volkswagen brand is its recent local recalls. Faced with VW’s reluctance to admit its fault, the Chinese government had to interve – no less. In March 2013, VW recalled over 380.000 vehicles in China, but not after the state television featured complaints about vibrations, loss of power and sudden acceleration in models including the Golf, some of it linked to dual-clutch gearbox flaws. The situation was so serious that it warranted a public apology by the head of VW China Jochem Heizmann at the 2013 Shanghai Auto Show.

In November 2013, 640.000 VW Group vehicles were recalled in China due to issues related to the lubricant replacement in seven-speed dual-clutch gearboxes. In August 2014, China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine had to step in and contacted Volkswagen to deal with complaints of broken rear shafts from Sagitar owners, after the German carmaker claimed the problems were isolated incidents and vowed to sue anyone spreading “untrue” information about their products, according to U.S. website The Truth About Cars. In April 2015, Volkswagen announced the creation of a “Special Channels” program to “further enhance customer care and ensure customer satisfaction”, recognising the negative reliability perception it is now facing.

VW SantanaVW Santana in Urumqi, Western China.

Volkswagen: the default foreign choice

One of the first foreign carmakers to manufacture locally along with Citroen, Volkswagen has long been synonymous with the status that is associated with car ownership in China. It is still to this day an extremely aspirational brand, that has managed to remain relatively affordable for the well-off urbanites from the East Coast, as I described in my April 2013 article China: How local brands may finally find their mojo at home. Volkswagen has catered for and evolved with Chinese car buyers needs for the past three decades. This status as the “default brand” in China has enabled the continuation of its sales dominance, but it also means Volkswagen has become the one brand that Chinese buyers put in the balance when hesitating with a Chinese marque.

In a sense, Volkswagen is the safety valve of foreign manufacturers in China: when consumers mull a return to their much-improved domestic carmakers, Volkswagen sales are the first to suffer as a result. The more significant the shift towards domestic carmakers, the more fragile VW sales. A few years ago when domestic carmakers were at their lowest, Chinese consumers would rather pay almost double for the assured reliability and status of a Volkswagen Jetta or Santana. After a couple of years of much-advertised reliability trouble (see above) and constant progress from domestic carmakers, this same choice between Volkswagen and local fares is starting to weigh in favour of brands such as ChangAn and Geely. In short, Volkswagen is taking the brunt of the reconciliation of Chinese buyers with their domestic brands.

BMW 3 Series L China September 2014. Picture courtesy of auto.ifeng.comVolkswagen may be losing replacement sales to more luxurious brands such as BMW.

Is the market moving away from the Volkswagen brand?

Apart from its vulnerability to local brands, Volkswagen’s woes in China may also have to do with timing. Four full years after the government put in place licence plate limitations to curb congestion and pollution in Shanghai and Beijing, a dozen cities have since been added to the list. As a result, the East Coast market is slowly but surely moving towards saturation. Increased wealth in these regions enable consumer tastes to move up the luxury scale and further away from bargain basement options. When faced with the prospect of replacing their 2009 Lavida, well-to-do Beijing car buyers may opt for a BMW 3 Series L or Mercedes GLA instead, as Volkswagen may not offer anymore the status recognition they once enjoyed.

Volkswagen may be losing consumer upwards, but they are getting less consumers in at the bottom of the price range. Thanks to aggressive marketing efforts and dense dealer networks, first time buyers in less developed areas of the country nowadays tend to prefer a cheap domestic SUV such as the JAC Refine S3 to a low-end Volkswagen sedan such as the VW Jetta. Seeing the Chinese market as silo’ed segments is an error that Volkswagen has made in the past: the domestic SUV buyers of today are the foreign sedan buyers of yesterday.

In Part 3. What next? we will look at what the future holds for Volkswagen in China.

Categories: China, STRATEGY

UK July 2015: Now with Top 125 models (BSCB exclusive)

August 25th, 2015 No comments

Jaguar XE UK July 2015The Jaguar XE is already up to #35 at home in the UK this month.

* See the Top 125 best-selling models by clicking on the title *

Today we can share with you as a BestSellingCarsBlog exclusive the Top 120 best-selling models in the UK, instead of the traditional (yet very restrictive) Top 10, allowing us a fascinating and up-to-the-minute insight into this market. The Vauxhall Mokka (#11), Nissan Juke (#12) and Ford Kuga (#13) are knocking on the UK Top 10’s door this month, and for the latter a monthly Top 10 ranking would be a historical first. The Audi A1 is up to a spectacular 17th spot vs. #49 over Q1 2015, the Skoda Octavia is up to #18 (Q1: #35), the VW Passat up to #23 (#67), Skoda Fabia up to #25 (#66), BMW 2 Series up to #44 (#84) and Ford Ecosport up to #70 (#91). The Nissan Pulsar is slowly stirring itself in the right direction, at a still very discreet 76th spot in July vs. #94 in Q1 2015.

Hyundai Tucson UK July 2015. Picture courtesy autocar.co.ukThe all-new Hyundai Tucson is already knocking on the UK Top 50’s door this month.

Mercedes justifies its fantastic brand performance (+21% and 5th place overall) with a Top 10 ranking from the C-Class, the A-Class at #19, E-Class at #32, GLA at #84 and CLA at #86 (vs. #103 and #178 respectively during Q1). The Volvo XC90 comes back to life thanks to the new generation: back up to #118. There are no less than ten 2015 launches in the July UK Top 120, all brilliantly led by the all-new Jaguar XE surging to a very impressive 35th spot vs. #16 for the BMW 3 Series it blatantly is aiming at. The Hyundai Tucson misses the Top 50 by less than 100 units at #53 whereas only demo cars would have been registered by now.

Citroen C4 Cactus UK July 2015. Picture courtesy dailyrecord.co.ukThe Citroen C4 Cactus ranks at #75 in the UK in July.

Further down, the Citroen C4 Cactus makes a remarkable arrival at #75, already the brand’s third best-seller in the UK below the C1 at #39 and the C4 Picasso at #54. The long-awaited return of the Viva nameplate, known as the Opel Karl elsewhere, points its bonnet at #78 this month – still relatively shy, the Fiat 500X is at #89 and the only Fiat in the Top 100 along with the 500 (#8), the Land Rover Discovery Sport is already marking a pause at #95 vs. #65 in Q1, and the Jeep Renegade, Smart Forfour, Suzuki Vitara and Mazda CX-3 also make their first appearance.

Detailed H1 2015 UK figures will be uploaded in September.

Previous post (Top 10): UK July 2015: Mercedes up 21% to #5 in more muted market growth

One year ago: UK July 2014: Nissan Qashqai hits best-ever #5, Mini back in Top 10

Full July 2015 Top 125 models Ranking Table below.

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Categories: UK

Mexico July 2015: Kia launches in record market up 16%

August 24th, 2015 No comments

Kia Forte Mexico July 2015. Picture courtesy motortrend.comKia has now officially launched in Mexico.

* See the Top 10 best-selling models and Top 30 manufacturers by clicking on the title *

New car sales in Mexico continue to freewheel its way through 2015. July sales are the best in history for this month, as it has been the case for each and every month so far this year! At 111.714 units, the market breaks the 100.000 mark for July for the first time in history, up 16% on July 2014 which was the previous record. Year-to-date deliveries are booming 21% to a record 721.539 units. Nissan has gotten into the habit of out-performing a euphoric market each month and July falls within this category: the Japanese manufacturer is up 22% to 28.557 sales and 25.6% share above General Motors (+2%), Volkswagen (+13%) and FCA Mexico (+24%). Notice also Mazda (+24%), Hyundai (+95%), Peugeot (+28%), Mini (+40%), Isuzu (+100%) and Volvo (+88%) delivering ecstatic results.

Kia Sorento Mexico July 2015. Picture courtesy caranddriver.com.mxThe Sorento is part of Kia’s initial lineup in Mexico.

But the big news in Mexico in July is the official launch of the Kia brand. Just over a year after introducing the Hyundai brand in the Mexican market in May 2014, the success of the operation is undeniable: Hyundai now featuring among the 10 most popular car brands in the country. The Korean manufacturer has therefore decided to introduce its sister brand in the country, Kia, from July 1 through 21 dealerships in 10 major cities across Mexico, increasing this figure to 47 dealerships by January 2016 and 65 by January 2017. Three models compose the initial Kia Mexican lineup: the Forte, Sportage and Sorento, with the Optima joining the crew in November. Initial results are very good: Kia lands directly at #12 this month thanks to 1.499 sales and 1.3%. For comparison, Hyundai sold 708 units for a 0.8% share and 15th place for its first month in market back in May 2014.

Nissan NP300 Frontier MexicoThe Nissan NP300 Frontier is now the 4th best-selling pickup in Mexico in 2015.

Over in the models ranking, the Chevrolet Aveo keeps the lead despite sales down 10% to 6.389 units, followed like in the year-to-date order by the Nissan Versa (+1%) with the VW Vento rounding up the podium thanks to sales up a fantastic 44% to 4.544. The VW Nuevo Jetta is down two spots on June but up 57% to 4th place, the Nissan March is up 40% to #6 but the Chevrolet Spark is down 44% to #9. Notice also the Nissan X-Trail holding its place inside the Mexican Top 10 at #10 and 2.445 sales, the Chevrolet Trax not far off at 2.054 deliveries and the Nissan Frontier, Pickup Doble Cabina (+44%) and Ford Ranger (+119%) all taking off.

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

Previous month (Top 225): Mexico June 2015: Now with Top 225 models (BSCB exclusive)

Previous month (Top 10): Mexico June 2015: Sixth consecutive monthly all-time record

One year ago: Mexico July 2014: Chevrolet Spark on podium

Full July 2015 Top 10 models and Top 30 manufacturers below.

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Categories: Mexico

Europe July 2015: VW Passat breaks into Top 5 for first time in 4 years

August 24th, 2015 11 comments

VW Passat Europe July 2015. Picture courtesy caranddriver.comVW Passat sales are up 50% year-on-year in Europe in July.

* See the Top 10 best-selling models by clicking on the title *

After a 15% surge in June, the European new car market is up an equally impressive 9% year-on-year in July to 1.180.078 registrations – that’s a cool 23 consecutive months of year-on-year gains – lifting the year-to-date total to 8.595.528 units, also up 9% on 2014. Volkswagen gains slightly less ground than the market at +8% but remains in the lead by far at 152.160 units vs. 84.450 (+7%) for Ford at #2. Opel/Vauxhall is up one rank to reclaim its spot on the European podium at 74.736 sales (+3%) above Renault (+5%) threatened by fellow countryman Peugeot (+11%) at 70.831 sales vs. 70.223. Inside the Top 10, Mercedes and Fiat both show the healthiest results: up 12% on July 2014.

Mercedes C Class Europe July 2015. Picture courtesy telegraph.co.ukMercedes sales are up 12% year-on-year in Europe.

In the models ranking, Volkswagen brilliantly manages to place 3 models inside the Top 5 for the first time in over four years: the VW Golf is up 11% to celebrate 64 consecutive months in the European pole position (the last time the Golf did not rank #1 in Europe is March 2010 – before BSCB was created), the VW Polo is up 16% in 2nd place and the VW Passat is up 50% to #5 with 21.972 sales, 52% of which coming from Germany where it hit its strongest volume in 8 years in July. The last time the Passat ranked within the European Top 5 was in April 2011, and the only time before that was in December 2005, almost 10 years ago. Historically high scores for the Passat in Europe indeed. The Skoda Octavia is up 6 spots on June to #6, the Ford Focus up 12% year-on-year at #7 but the Opel Corsa is down 11% to #9 despite the arrival of the new model.

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

Previous month: Europe June 2015: Renault Captur equals all-time record #7 spot

Full July 2015 Top 10 models Ranking Table below.

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Categories: Europe

South Africa H1 2015: Now with All-models ranking (BSCB exclusive)

August 24th, 2015 No comments

Hyundai i10 South Africa June 2015The Hyundai Grand i10 is among the 10 most popular models in South Africa.

* See the Top 320 All-models ranking by clicking on the title *

In South Africa, Hyundai, Kia, Great Wall and (on and off) Mercedes only share total brand sales but not models splits. For the first time in the history of BSCB we are able to share with you official sales figures for all Hyundai, Kia, Great Wall and Mercedes models for South Africa, as well as Chery and FAW. This enables us to finally understand the entirety of the South African market, giving us a fascinating insight into what are the real best-sellers in the country, without omission. The period for this new data is the First Half of 2015, and as expected Hyundai comes out in force, placing the Grand i10 at #10, the i20 at #22, the Tucson at #26, i10 at #33 and Accent at #35.

Grat Wall Steed 6 South Africa June 2015. Picture courtesy ignitionlive.co.zaThe Great Wall Steed is inside the Top 100

Mercedes for its part has the C-Class at a fantastic 11th position and the A-Class at #42 but manages to place a total of eight nameplates in the South African Top 100 so far in 2015. Kia also does very well with the Rio, Picanto and Sportage all slipping inside the Top 60. As far as Great Wall is concerned, the release of models splits uncovers a very solid performance of its Steed pickup, ranking #84 so far in 2015 and accounting for 56% of the brand’s sales in the country. Notice also the FAW V2 at #100, the Chery QQ3 at #184 and the Chery Fulwin2 at #189.

Previous post: South Africa July 2015: Toyota Hilux reclaims throne

Previous month: South Africa June 2015: Ford Ranger resists in pole position

One year ago: South Africa June 2014: VW Polo takes the lead for the first time

Full H1 2015 Top 320 All-models Ranking Table below.

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Categories: South Africa

Japan July 2015: Now with Top 150 All-local models (BSCB exclusive)

August 24th, 2015 No comments

Toyota Mirai Japan July 2015. Picture courtesy gensun.org41 Toyota Mirai found a new home in Japan in July.

* See the Top 150 All-local models by clicking on the title *

Today we can share with you very rare  All-local models data for Japan. The first amendment to the July Top 30 regular cars we published earlier this month is the arrival of the Lexus NX at #41 overall and #29 regular cars with 2.430 sales. Somehow Lexus doesn’t report sales fast enough to be included in the monthly JADA Top 30. The success of the NX at home in Japan is spectacular: it accounts for 55% of Lexus domestic sales in July. Interestingly, the Toyota Auris ranks at a low #65 with 938 sales while both the Mazda Axela (aka Mazda3) and Atenza (aka Mazda6) are now well past the honeymoon period that accompanies a new launch in Japan, ranking #45 and #66 respectively. A strong seller in China, the Honda Jade is a lot shyer at home (#67), while the Lexus RC (#104) and RCF (#111) are posting strong scores. The Toyota Mirai points its hydrogen-fueled bonnet at #131 with 41 units finding a new home in July.

Previous post: Toyota July 2015: New generation lifts Toyota Sienta to #8

Previous month: Japan June 2015: Facelifted Toyota Corolla confirms #2 spot

One year ago (regular): Japan July 2014: Subaru Levorg almost inside Top 10

One year ago (kei): Japan July 2014: Suzuki Hustler breaks records

Full July 2015 Top 150 All-local models below.

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Categories: Japan