Paris Auto Show 2014: Top 10 Best of Cars & Fashion exhibition

October 20th, 2014 No comments

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The Cars and Fashion exhibition was on as part of the Paris Auto Show 2014, displaying some pretty spectacular models. My 10 favourites are featured below.

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone 2

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone detail1. Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone

This Coupé is based on a prototype designed by Marcello Gandini (who also designed the Lamborghini Miura), while he was working with Bertone. The prototype was exhibited at the Montreal Universal Exhibition in 1967, with the objective being to create and exhibit “La massima aspiration dell’uomo in fatto di automobili”, man’s highest aspiration in the matter of automobile. Bringing this prototype into production ended up being more difficult than expected and had to wait until the 1971 Model Year. 3.925 were produced between December 1970 and July 1974 and the Coupé Bertone was sold until 1977. It remains one of the most beautiful Italian coupés of the seventies.

Maserati Boomerang2. Maserati Boomerang Concept Car Ital-Design

Giorgetto Giugiaro founds Ital Design in 1968 and presents the Maserati Boomerang in 1971, one of the sassiest concepts of Maserati’s entire history. The Boomerang features a cutting or even bleeding-edge line, anticipating a few years early what would end up being Maserati’s style over the second half of the seventies. The future continues inside with an ultra-modern dashboard that features all instruments grouped inside the steering wheel which literately revolves around the meters.

Mercedes Benz C111-II3. Mercedes-Benz C111-II

The Mercedes C111 was unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September 1969. This “research-car” intrigued at the time, mainly because of its “cornered” lines pushed to the extreme, its scissor doors, incredible metallic orange paint and body made of glass fiber reinforced plastic. 6 months later at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show, a reworked version, called C111-II was unveiled. It featured a larger boot and quad rotor engine. A total of 14 examples were manufactured between 1969 and 1979, including 6 C111-II, but this model was never commercialised.

Alfa Romeo Carabo

Alfa Romeo Carabo 2

Alfa Romeo Carabo detail4. Alfa Romeo Carabo

The Alfa Romeo Carabo was designed by Marcello Gandini and presented by Bertone in 1968. It marked a brutal severance from the curvy and voluptuous lines that were fashionable at the time. With its irised green colour and golden windshield, the Carabo clearly evokes a beetle – especially with its outstretched hydraulically-assisted revolving doors, hence its name referring to a kind of scarab. This prototype was created in record time, despite the technical challenges posed by an extremely fragile windshield composed of two leafs of glass sandwiching a thin gold leaf.

Unveiled at the Bertone stand at the 1968 Paris Auto Show, the Carabo is a real shock for many visitors, but the warm welcome it received had Alfa Romeo trust Bertone once again for a new V8 Coupé: the Montreal (see above). By imposing its brutal and cuneiform design, the Alfa Romeo Carabo, a strange concept car with psychedelic colours remains, almost 50 years after its creation, one of the most important milestones in the history of automobile design.

Renault Alpine A3105. Renault Alpine A310

At the same time the successor of the twice World Rally Car champion Renault Alpine A110 and aimed at competing with Porsche, the Renault Alpine A310 had a tough task ahead when it launched in 1971. The A310 had a more aggressive look than the A110 with its tight line and 6 headlamps, but was however destined more to gentlemen-drivers than pure rallymen. The interior now sports carpet, is a lot more comfortable than the A110 and its features are much richer. The car is much heavier too at an additional 200kg which will attract criticism from the press, handicapping the car’s supposedly sporty status.

Peugeot 402 Eclipse6. Peugeot 402 Eclipse

Invented by amateur designer Georges Paulin, the retractable roof first appeared on the 1934 Peugeot 401, the first car series in the entire world to feature this system. The Peugeot 402 offers a ‘Coach’ version with retractable roof called Eclipse as soon as its launch in 1935. 580 examples would be produced between 1935 and 1941.

Renault Juvaquatre7. Renault Juvaquatre Fourgonette

The Renault Juvaquatre is Renault’s first frameless vehicle and was born before World War II. It is also the first Renault to be produced when the brand’s Billancourt factory was rebooted after the war. This vehicle is the symbol of a time when France was lacking everything and most of all cars. It was purchased as humble help for a flurry of small crafts (boulanger, plumber, deliveryman) but was also used as improvised family car, making it the ancestor to the current Renault Kangoo.

Citroen SM Carburateur8. Citroen SM Carburateur

Aerodynamic, fast and nervous but also comfortable, enjoyable to drive with exemplary handling, the Citroen SM, introduced at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show, is one of the most prestigious cars in the history of automobile. It is the result of a collaboration between Citroen and Maserati (for the engine), this FWD model introduces the notion of “Grand Tourism”, enabling high speed driving at a security levels previously unknown for a series car.

Prototype Courreges Bulle9. Prototype Courrèges Bulle

Renault 4 Parisienne10. Renault 4 Parisienne

Paris Auto Show 2014: Citroen flexing its muscles as the new pragmatic brand in the PSA Group

October 20th, 2014 1 comment

Citroen C4 Cactus Paris Auto ShowCitroen C4 Cactus at the Paris Auto Show

* See the Full interview by clicking on the title and all Paris Auto Show 2014 reports here *

After DS and Peugeot, we now explore the third brand of the PSA Group, Citroen, at the Paris Auto Show 2014. A lot less activity on the Citroen stand than say at Peugeot or Renault, but the second part of 2014 has seen the launch of the C4 Cactus progressively in Europe (France and Spain first, then the rest of the continent) and a continuous flow of new models in China including the C3-XR unveiled at the Citroen C42 flagship store on the Champs Elysées just before the Auto Show, a model that will not be sold in France and wasn’t present on the Citroen stand.  I had the privilege to interview Julien Montarnal, Citroen Director of Marketing, Communication & Sport, who struck me as particularly down-to-earth, approachable and articulate, a rare enough feat for a high level French businessman (or should I say French person full stop…). This makes him the perfect fit for the brand’s repositioning.

Citroen C4 Cactus airbumpsCitroen C4 Cactus airbumps detail

BSCB: One year ago you announced the repositioning of the Citroen brand within the PSA-Peugeot Citroen Group. What are the first results?

Julien Montarnal: The results of this repositioning can be seen on our stand here at the Paris Auto Show. Our credo is creative technologie at the service of wellness. By wellbeing I mean comfortable, in a physical sense but also in the sense of proposing a customer experience that is light and stress-free. Our new products the C1 and C4 Cactus are very representative of what we want to put forward for the Citroen brand. What is creativity, technology at the service of wellbeing for us? Creativity is design. A Citroen has to be recognisable, visible, it’s in our DNA. The C4 Cactus is a good example: it makes heads turn on the street and that doesn’t happen often. The C1 as well is now much more differentiated from its cousins than it was with the first generation. Secondly the technology. We always have and always will inject new technology in our models but now we are focusing on truly helpful technology and offering concrete, pragmatic and positive solutions to make your life easier. Here too the C4 Cactus is a good example with its airbumps. The first thing we do when we buy a new iPhone is buy a cover for it – although I see you haven’t done that…

Full interview below.

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Paris Auto Show 2014: Next generation Peugeot 2008 could outsell 208 in France

October 20th, 2014 3 comments

Peugeot 2008 Paris Auto ShowPeugeot 2008 at the Paris Auto Show 2014

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

After DS, I can now share with you an interview I had the privilege to conduct with Marc Bocqué, World Press and External Relation Manager for Peugeot. I last interviewed Marc at the Frankfurt Auto Show exactly one year ago, and a lot has happened since, notably the tremendous success of the Peugeot 2008 in Europe. The entire interview can be found below the jump. Enjoy!

Original “Bombardier” Peugeot 205 GTi TV advertising and the 208 GTi 30th anniversary reboot.

BSCB: When we last spoke in Frankfurt one year ago, you were launching both the 2008 and the new generation 308. Positive results since then?

Marc Bocqué: Absolutely, we have had remarkable results. Roughly one year after its launch, the 200,000th 2008 has just come out of our assembly plants (BSCB note: let’s make it 200,800th for the fun of it). I’m not afraid to say it: it is a considerable success, way beyond what we were hoping for. The car has a true personality and a lot of differentiating elements, and the public has understood the message we have sent with the 2008. I think the vehicle has its own merits, but beyond that we also had the luck on one hand and the vision on the other hand to launch an urban SUV at a time where there is a relatively quick de-sedan-isation (BSCB note: in French de-berlinisation) of all segments in the market. This silhouette made for people who live in the city and like the city but also like to go outdoors during the weekend with a car that has a more adventurer look has really struck a chord.

Peugeot Quartz Paris Auto ShowPeugeot Quartz Concept Car

BSCB: At the same time the 208 is starting to lose quite significant ground in Europe – less so in France, has the 2008 been cannibalising the 208 as opposed to the Renault Captur which has not dented into Clio sales?

(Full interview below)

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France 1-8 October 2014: VW Golf leads in market down 8%

October 19th, 2014 No comments

VW Golf France October 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frVW Golf

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

Harsh start of the month for new car sales in France with sales down 8% year-on-year during the first eight days of the month. Weekly rankings are always to be taken with a grain of salt as they are heavily influenced by promotions and specific manufacturers policies about front or back-loading their sales during the month – for example Renault backloads and ranks third so far but will finish the month #1 or, less likely, #2 behind Peugeot. Nevertheless we have a historical event happening before our eyes this week: in a very nationalistic market, the VW Golf manages to edge out the Peugeot 308 by 21 units for the overall pole position with 1.280 sales (+66% year-on-year) vs. 1.260 for the 308 (+69%). In BSCB records, the only other time a foreign vehicle took the lead of the weekly ranking in France was during the first week of January 2012 when the VW Polo topped the charts

Dacia Duster France October 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frDacia Duster sales are up 180% year-on-year in France this week.

This does not mean the Golf will finish the month in the lead at all, but it could deliver a Top 5 ranking which would ranking up there among the nameplate’s best performances ever. The Peugeot 208 is down 24% in third place above the Citroen C3 (-4%) and Renault Clio IV (+2%) while the Dacia Duster (+180%), Peugeot 2008 (+18%) and Dacia Sandero (+30%) all shine. Brand-wise, Peugeot (stable) is above Citroen (-1%) and Renault (-10%) for now while Dacia (+59% in 5th place) and Ford (+24%) are the only manufacturers to gain ground year-on-year this week.

Previous post: France September 2014: Now with Top 300 models and All-brands

Previous month: France September 2014: Renault Twingo III up to 8th place

One year ago: France 1-7 October 2013: Citroen C4 Picasso and Toyota Yaris strong

Full 1-8 October 2014 Top 10 models and brands Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: France

USA Coast to Coast: Everything is bigger in Texas

October 18th, 2014 8 comments

1. Ram 2500 Long Horn Fort WorthRam 2500 Long Horn in Fort Worth – Texas

You can check out each Coast to Coast report here

Many thanks to David Curry for the pictures in this article.

The Coast to Coast reports are back, and after New Orleans we now land in Texas, literally the land of pickups trucks. This time Albert, my Ram 1500 ecoDiesel feeling now absolutely at home, took me to Houston, Austin, Dallas and Fort Worth before heading North to Oklahoma City. Texas makes it look like the rest of America I have visited so far wasn’t really trying. It may sound cliché, but everything is bigger in Texas. My impressions as well as official sales data courtesy of JATO are below.

New York Oklahoma CityUSA Coast to Coast trip so far. Map courtesy of Google Maps.

First a bit of trivia about Texas, one of the most symbolic States of the United States. The name Texas is derived from the word “tejas” which means “friends” or “allies” in Caddo language. This term was used by the Spanish themselves when they controlled the area to describe both the region and the Caddo people, a confederacy of several Southeastern Native American tribes who inhabited what is now East Texas, Northern Louisiana, southern Arkansas and Oklahoma. Today the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma is a single federally recognised tribe.

2. GMC Sierra DallasGMC Sierra in Dallas, Texas

At 26.4 million inhabitants, Texas is the second most populous State in the U.S. after California, and would feature at #47 worldwide if it was an independent country at exactly the same figure as Afghanistan and in between such nations as Saudi Arabia (30.8 million) and Australia (23.6 million). It is the second largest State after Alaska at 268.600 sq miles (or 696.241 km2), larger than France. Main cities are Houston (2.2 million inhabitants) and San Antonio (1.4 million) with the largest metropolitan area being the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex at 6.4 million souls and its capital being Austin at 885,400 inhabitants.

3. Toyota Tundra DallasToyota Tundra in Dallas, Texas

Texas has had a tumultuous history, being successively ruled by various nations: Spain, France then Mexico until 1836 when Texas became an independent Republic, before joining the U.S. as the 28th state in 1845. Texas is also called the Lone Star State, and its flag features a single star, a reference to its former status of a independent republic and as a reminder of the state’s struggle for independence from Mexico. Now. Trivia is out of the way, let’s get down to business.

4. Albert Texas State lineAlbert posing next to the Louisiana/Texas State line

And first things first, a few reports ago I said “I still am yet to spot a true American lunatic driving frankly dangerously, and I have found American highways one of the most relaxing and predictable driving experiences of my life.” That was in South Carolina. Well. I am now eating my words as everything changes the minute you cross the Texas State line. Lunatic drivers are more frequent than non-, unpredictable lane changes are the norm and speed limits are a long lost memory. To my advantage, pickup trucks rule the highways and ‘standard’ cars have no issues getting out of the way as soon as I get too close, not wanting to break my cruise control. So far so good.

5. Ford F150 Dallas 3Ford F150 in Dallas, Texas. Albert looks tiny next to it!

I started this article by saying Texas made me feel like the rest of America I had seen so far wasn’t really trying. Example: the huge highways around Houston. The I10 that circles the city at times becomes a 7 lane-highway. I simply had not seen such a thing at any time before and especially not in Los Angeles where I’ve been a few times (anyone care to correct this?), however this may be linked to the scarceness of public transport in Houston. Most interestingly, far from being an over-zealously built and unnecessarily grandiose undertaking, the 7 lanes were put to good use on a Saturday night at 9pm, each one filled with a regular flow of cars driving at speed limit or more. Impressive.

Bigger highways, but also bigger car dealerships. I drove past the largest dealership I’ve seen so far on the trip on the I10 a few miles West of Houston: Don McGill Toyota of Houston. Their website lists an inventory of 1.500 cars on site. Although I didn’t drive past it, It’s also worth noting the Fred Haase Toyota World dealership on the I45 North of Houston: the #1 Tundra dealer in the world and #1 volume dealer in Texas overall, with 2.860 vehicles on inventory right now. While huge, these are however not the largest dealerships in the country: the crown goes to Longo Toyota near Pasadena in California which is simply the largest car dealership in the world. No less. 15.000 vehicles sold a year, 50 acres, 500 employees, 30 languages and dialects spoken and complete with Subway restaurant and Starbucks café on site… It’s a different planet. But we digress…

6. Pickups DallasPickup trucks and motels. Now we truly are in America.

Texas is the kingdom of pickup trucks. Proof: according to Polk, pickup sales in the state were 3 times that of the #2 pickup market (California), and Texas accounts for 1 in 6 full-sized pickups sold nationally, whereas it holds only 8% of the national population. Even more impressive: the Houston metro area alone would rank #5 among pickup markets if it were a separate state. Dallas would be #7, as more pickups are sold just in the Dallas and Houston areas combined than in any other U.S. state, including No. 2 California. And more: even excluding both Dallas and Houston, Texas would still be the No. 1 pick-up state in the country!

6b Pickups Fort WorthPassenger cars are becoming rarer and rarer. In Fort Worth, Texas.

As a result, pickup truck manufacturers obviously pay particular attention to the Texan market, and most have special editions named in reference to this state: Ram has the LongHorn, Ford has the F-Series Texas Edition, Chevrolet has the Silverado… Texas Edition also while Toyota has the Tundra 1794 Edition named for the ranch, founded in 1794, upon which the truck’s assembly plant is located in San Antonio. At the State Fair of Texas in Dallas late last month, Toyota also unveiled a Tundra Bass Pro-Shop Offroad Edition available only to customers in the Gulf states region. Interestingly, only Toyota manufactures its full-size pickup truck locally in Texas and has recently relocated its headquarters from California to the Lone Star state. Last year at the launch of the new generations Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra, Automotive News noted that General Motors was piping as much as half of their initial national supply of 2014 pickups to Texas… Partly helped by their good health here, national sales of full-size pickup trucks hit 2 million units in 2013 and for the first time since 2007.

11. Ford F250 Fort WorthFord F250 in Fort Worth, Texas. The Ford F250 is the #5 best-seller in Texas.

But what are the best-selling vehicles in Texas overall?

Pos Model FY2013
1 Ford F-150 96,663
2 Chevrolet Silverado 78,047
3 Ram Pickup 67,378
4 Toyota Camry 36,953
5 Ford F-250 Super Duty 33,305

Source: JATO

Ford and Chevrolet take advantage of their extensive rural dealer network to take the top two spots with the F-150 just below 100,000 units, by far its best state score in the country, and the Silverado at almost 80,000. Seeing 3 or 4 current generation F-150 in a row is not uncommon on Texan highways. The Ram Pickup rounds up the podium at 67,000 and surprisingly, unlike Louisiana, the Top 4 is not 100% composed of pickup trucks with the Toyota Camry managing to point its much smaller bonnet in 4th position – albeit with just a little more than half the sales of the Ram. Tellingly, the Ford F-250 Super Duty makes its very first appearance in any State’s Top 5 so far thanks to a mammoth 33,305 sales in Texas. Interestingly, Toyota doesn’t place the Tundra inside the Top 5.

7. Chevrolet Impala DallasChevrolet Impala in Dallas, Texas

Thorough observation of the traffic on Texan highways also reveals the following: there are more Ford Edge and Cadillac XTS here than anywhere before during this trip, the new generation Chrysler 200 and Chevrolet Impala are back on the roads for the first time since Memphis, and the Toyota Tundra is strong but even though it is produced locally, it was more frequent in Northern Virginia or Western Louisiana. Austin struck me as a hipster chic town with more Lexus, Infiniti, Toyota Prius and Nissan Leaf, less pickup trucks and the strongest heritage of previous generation Toyota Corolla so far in the trip. The Nissan Altima and Honda Accord should top the sales charts there.

10. Chrysler 200 Dallas with Kennedy detailsChrysler 200 in Dallas, Texas

The Ford F-150 clearly dominates the Dallas vehicle landscape, potentially holding up to 10% market share there and way above the Chevrolet Silverado, more so than Texas-wide. The base version with plastic bumpers (playing in the same sandpit as my Ram “Albert” 1500 Tradesman) is the Car of the state. A truckload of them all through Texas and in Dallas in particular, pun intended. There were almost no F-250 and F-350 in town, only outside on working sites (makes sense) and the new generation Chrysler 200 was stronger again in Dallas. As whole, both the Nissan Armada and Titan are a notch stronger in Texas than they are in the rest of the states I visited so far.

Highlights of the trip in the Lone Star state were the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza in Dallas (see above), another very thorough museum this time about JFK’s assassination, and Fort Worth, which you might say is touristic yet oh so reassuringly and symbolically Texan. I bought a cowboy hat and belt. I had to. When in Texas… Meanwhile Albert, my valiant Ram 1500 Tradesman truck with ecoDiesel, has now crossed the 3,000 miles milestone in this trip, standing at 3,144 miles (5,069 km) by the time I arrived in Dallas. Fuel economy now stands at 26.4 mpg, still above the 24 average advertised by Ram for city/highway. Very happy with that one.

Next stop: Oklahoma City.

Full Photo Report below.

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Europe September 2014: VW Golf & Polo biggest gainers in Top10

October 18th, 2014 8 comments

VW Polo Europe September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frVW Polo

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

All top 5 European markets registered year-on-year gains in September, enabling European sales to grow for the 13th straight month at +6% to 1.272.559 sales, bringing the year-to-date total to 9.9 million units, also up 6% on 2013. In fact, 22 of the 29 countries included in the data are up year-on-year this month, led by the UK up 6%, Germany up 5%, France up 6%, Italy up 3% and Spain up 26%. As usual the mammoth new licence plate month in the UK (426,000 sales this year vs. 260,000 in Germany) skews the models ranking. The two fastest growing models in Europe this month are from Volkswagen: the Golf is up 19% to 53,888 sales in pole position and the Polo is up 32% but down one spot on August to #3 and 28,379 units.

Fiat 500 Europe September 2014. Picture courtesy of automobile-magazine.frTwo generations of Fiat 500

The Ford Fiesta (#2), Opel Corsa (#4) and Opel Astra (back inside the Top 10 at #9) benefit from their strength in the UK market, while the Renault Clio is down to #5 ahead of the Ford Focus and Peugeot 208. Another strong month for the Audi A3 in 8th place with just over 20,000 sales across the continent, while we welcome the Fiat 500 among Europe’s 10 most successful vehicles for only the third time ever after last March, another month boosted by UK sales, and last June. The 500 sells 18,194 units, up 8% on September 2013 and allowing it a brilliant 10th spot this month.

Previous month: Europe August 2014: 12th month of year-on-year gains

One year ago: Europe October 2013: Skoda Octavia breaks into Top 5 for the first time

Full September 2014 Top 10 models and brands Ranking Tables below.

Read more…

Categories: Europe

Paris Auto Show 2014: DS range will be solely SUV and sedans.

October 16th, 2014 12 comments

DS Divine Paris 2014DS Divine Concept Car

The Paris Auto Show kicked off a little over a week ago. I had the privilege to attend it and interview marketing reps from most French manufacturers. This is the first in a series of articles dedicated to the Paris Auto Show. We start with DS, since last June a stand-alone upscale brand aimed at topping off PSA/Peugeot-Citroen’s range. Since its launch in 2010 as a sub-brand of Citroen, DS sold 500,000 vehicles, 90% of which in Europe, but its European sales have started plateauing in the absence of any new model launch. PSA has advertised the brand’s aggressive launch in China where the DS5 along with two China-only models, the DS5 LS and DS6 SUV, are currently produced.

DS6 China October 2014. Picture courtesy of auto.sohu.comThe DS6 SUV just launched in China.

As I detailed in my STRATEGY series “What future for French manufacturers?”, turning DS a stand-alone brand makes strategic sense, but a very consistent and aggressive marketing, engineering and R&D push will be required in the long run to have any chance at seriously competing with Audi, Mercedes and BMW – a long-term goal for the DS brand. I interviewed Arnaud Ribault, the new Global Sales and Marketing Vice President for the DS brand, previously DS General Manager in China. Surprise, what started as a rather standard conversation about the sales performance and future prospects of the DS brand rapidly turned into a bewildering and quite amusing game of reading-between-the-lines guess work, with two main pieces of information somewhat contradicted by DS CEO Yves Bonnefont…

Citroen DS3 France April 2012It would appear the DS3 will be killed in its current form to become a small SUV.

Extracts of the interview translated from French into English below.

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France September 2014: Now with Top 300 models & All-brands

October 16th, 2014 No comments

Citroen C1 II France September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frFirst Top 30 ranking at home for the second generation Citroen C1.

* See the Top 160 best-selling models and Top 47 All-brands by clicking on the title! *

Thanks to my correspondents in the place (thanks Patricia and Christian) and L’Argus I can now share with you actuals for the French models and brands sales charts after a one month-hiatus. And there is a lot to learn this month. The new Peugeot 108 shoots up to #27 with 1,389 sales, just 4 units above the Citroen C1 II at #28 while the Toyota Aygo II has to do with a more modest 75th place with 447 sales. The most impressive evolution goes without a doubt to the Mercedes GLA: the compact SUV brilliantly breaks into the French Top 50 for the very first time directly to #38 thanks to 909 sales – compared to #79 in July, its last known monthly ranking. This means the GLA is already Mercedes’ third best-seller in France below the A Class (#32) and B Class (#33) but above the C Class (#46), CLA (#92) and E Class (#106), and could very well become the brand’s most popular model in the country before the end of the year. Talk about an absolute success…

Jeep Renegade France September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frFirst month of sales in France for the Jeep Renegade

Further down, the Nissan X-Trail benefits fully from the new model and climbs to #67 vs. #132 year-to-date and #175 in 2013, the Mitsubishi Outlander shoots up to #80 vs. #143 so far this year, the BMW 2 Series breaks into the French Top 100 thanks to the arrival of the Active Tourer variant at #82 and 432 sales, the BMW X4 is up to #127, the Porsche Macan up to #143 and the Mercedes V Class up to #150. There are three newcomers in the French Top 200 in September: the Nissan Pulsar at #118 with 244 sales, the Jeep Renegade at #158 and 101 units and the Lexus NX 300H at #170 with 81 sales.

Full September 2014 Top 300 models and Top 50 brands Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: France

Israel September 2014: Nissan Micra and Renault Fluence up

October 16th, 2014 3 comments

Nissan Micra Israel September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frNissan Micra

* See the Top 230 best-selling models and Top 40 brands by clicking on the title! *

New car sales in Israel are up a massive 60% year-on-year in September to 18,761 registrations, bringing the year-to-date total to 192,571 units, up 17% on 2013. Brand-wise, Hyundai reclaims the top spot off its sister company Kia thanks to 2,450 sales and 13.1% vs. 2,225 and 11.9% while Toyota remains in third place with 10.7% share. Suzuki is up two spots on August to #4 and 7%, Renault is up 5 to #5 and 6.5% vs. 3.7% year-to-date, Nissan is up 4 to #7 and Fiat up 5 to #15. In the models ranking, the podium is unchanged on August with the Toyota Corolla (4.8%) above the Kia Picanto (4.2%) and Suzuki SX4 (3.9%). The Hyundai i10 is back up one spot to #4 while the Nissan Micra delivers the performance of the month, up 20 ranks on August to land in 5th place with 644 sales and 3.4%. The Renault Fluence also shines, up 21 spots to #7, as do the Kia Forte up to #10 vs. #21 year-to-date and the Suzuki Alto up 14 to #18.

Previous month: Israel August 2014: Hyundai i10 in Top 5, Mitsubishi Attrage in Top 10

One year ago: Israel September 2013: Toyota Corolla confirms pole position

Full September 2014 Top 230 models and Top 40 brands Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: Israel

Hong Kong (China) September 2014: Lexus NX directly in Top 20

October 16th, 2014 4 comments

Lexus NX300h Hong Kong September 2014Lexus NX

* See the Top 175 best-selling models and Top 40 brands by clicking on the title! *

New car sales in Hong Kong are up a very robust 26% year-on-year in September to 5,335 registrations, bringing the year-to-date total to 39,678 units, up 14% on 2013. The models ranking podium is identical to the year-to-date order with the Toyota Hiace, Crown LPG Taxi and Noah dominating the sales charts. The Mercedes CLA becomes no less than the most popular passenger car in Hong Kong this month thanks to 143 sales lifting it up to 4th place overall. The BMW X5 (+10 spots on August to #6) and Mercedes C Class (+17 to #10) also shine but the big event of the month is to be found a little below…

Mercedes CLA Hong Kong September 2014. Picture courtesy of motortrend.comThe Mercedes CLA is simply the best-selling passenger car in Hong Kong this month…

For its very first appearance in the Hong Kong sales charts, the Lexus NX beats its previous world-best ranking (#22 in Taiwan) and lands directly at #19 with 74 sales and 1.4% share, also by far Lexus’s best-seller here. Notice also the Audi A3 up 88 ranks on last month to #20, BMW X1 up 29 to #23, Porsche Macan up 44 to #31 and Maserati Ghibli at #42. Finally, we welcome 3 additional newcomers in the ranking this month: the BMW X4 at #69, the Mercedes GLA at #85 and the Lamborghini Huracan at #156.

Previous month: Hong Kong (China) August 2014: Mercedes CLA #3 passenger car!

One year ago: Hong Kong (China) September 2013: Mercedes A and CLA Class up

Full September 2014 Top 175 models and Top 40 brands Ranking Tables below.

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Categories: Hong Kong (China)