Report: Can the No.1 SUV brand in China take on the Australian Outback? Part 3: Orroroo to Lyndhurst

Haval H8 LyndhurstDamo in Lyndhurst SA

This is Part 3 of our Report on driving a Haval H8 into the Australian Outback. See Part 1: The Stakes and Part 2: Sydney to Broken Hill. After sneakily pushing through the night past Broken Hill, our second shut-eye stop is in the bizarrely-named town of Orroroo where arriving at 9:45pm at the caravan park has probably woken up half the local population. I can now smell the Birdsville Track in the air, it is so close: only 385 km or 240 miles away. The last hurdle as I wake up the next day: the torrential rains that have been battering the region for the entire night, peppered with roaring thunderstorms.

One last time, I feverishly check with my best friend of the trip – after Damo, the Outback South Australia road conditions website, but the Birdsville Track is still open. The objective is to get to Marree, pronounced “maaah-stay on the A until you almost run out of breath-weee”, and go as deep as possible into the Birdsville Track today, ideally up to Mungeranie halfway through. But the title of this article is an indication that something may have gone horribly wrong…

Broken Hill-Lyndhurst mapLeg 2 takes us from Broken Hill to Lyndhurst, but sneaky nighttime driving pushed us to Orroroo.Haval H8 Jerrycan HawkerTime to fill the “emergency fuel” vintage 20L jerrycan…

A jerrycan-filling stop in Hawker, the main town in the Flinders Ranges National Park, brings some bad news indeed . “You’ll be pushing your luck reaching Marree today: there are a couple of flooded creeks on the way, and it’s a very muddy dirt track from Lyndhurst onwards… Let me have a look at the weather radar… Oh gosh, it’s only getting worse in the next few hours… You’d be lucky even getting to Leigh Creek, be veeeery careful.” Let the adventure begin… Outside, Damo heard the entire conversation and is squirming with impatience. We’re going to see what you’re made of, Haval H8.

Outback Highway SAKangaroos are hiding today.Leigh Creek SANot very deep but running fast. Nothing Damo couldn’t handle though. 

Rain stops as we launch onto the last 200km before Lyndhurst so I have good hopes it may all be fine in the end. There were a couple of flooded passes before Leigh Creek indeed, but the water wasn’t deep, only running fast, and it wasn’t anything Damo couldn’t handle. Mobile coverage and thus internet access are now intermittent, so I have no opportunity to check the road conditions website until Lyndhurst, the fork where the road divides towards either the Birdsville or Strzelecki Tracks. And a nasty surprise awaits: although the Birdsville Track itself remains open, the section leading to Marree where it starts is now closed. “They just closed it a couple hours ago!” complains the driver of one of two road trains stuck in town.

Lyndhurst Marree closed signLyndhurst Marree closedHeartbreak…

Darren from the Lyndhurst Roadhouse ventures an option: “You could risk it, but if you get caught it’s a $1.000 fine…” Nope. I don’t know Damo’s 4WD limits yet and I’m not about to test them on a closed Birdsville Track. But there is another issue: the Lyndhurst Roadhouse Premium Unleaded pump is out of order. A few very kind calls from Darren and the search zeroes in on Copley, a mere 34 km back from Lyndhurst on the Outback highway. Yet this means I won’t be able to refuel in Marree before throwing Damo onto the 520km-long Birdsville Track, so we are in for a second 20L jerrycan of fuel. An additional 40L onboard on top of the 75L from the tank should do the trick, even if Damo drinks 15L/100km when struggling deep in mud.

Haval H8 Copley Outback MotorsOutback Motors in Copley SA Copley RefuelingFilling up in Copley SA: the most expensive so far. 

Cooke’s Outback Motors in Copley is the last station with Premium Unleaded until Birdsville, a further 630km away, and the laconic character managing the place is taking full advantage. At 185.9 cents a litre, it is by far the most expensive fuel of the entire trip to-date. Outback Motors also offers towing services on both the Birdsville and Strzelecki Tracks…

2. Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Tow Truck Copley SA1. Haval H8 Nissan Patrol tow truckToyota Land Cruiser 70 and Nissan Patrol tow utes in Copley SA

The two trusted vehicles are a Nissan Patrol GU and Toyota Land Cruiser 70, both in their ute form and the latter stickered “Erics Rig”. A bit like flying doctors, these two tow-trucks are well respected but also the last thing anyone want to have to call on either tracks: seeing them on the go means someone is stranded somewhere in the desert. Today is the first and, I very deeply hope, last time Damo meets these two Grim Reaper-like individuals…

5. Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Lyndhurst RoadhouseLyndhurst Roadhouse

Lyndhurst amounts to nothing more than a roadhouse, a hotel and a (closed) community services building adorned with an Australian-Aboriginal combined flag. Population: between 4 and 10 depending on the day. Damo soon becomes the main attraction in town, in the midst of a herd of Toyota Land Cruiser utes. As we already noticed in Broken Hill, the Land Cruiser ute is well established as the the king of the Australian Outback. Equally popular in its 70 single cab and 79 double cab variants, it was by very far the most frequent vehicle stopping at the Lyndhurst Roadhouse when I stayed there, coming from the now closed Birdsville and Strzelecki Tracks.

7. Toyota Land Cruiser 70 LyndhurstThe Land Cruiser ute was by far the most frequent vehicle stopping at the Lyndhurst Roadhouse.

Speaking with the locals, it becomes clear the Land Cruiser ute is the benchmark against which all other vehicles are measured here. The reason behind this success: a tough-as-nails V8 Turbo Diesel powerplant, live-axle and optional diff locks make it the most capable off-road workhorse available in the country. And with the Nissan Patrol GU being discontinued at the end of 2016, it is the only choice. It doesn’t come cheap, with the single cab starting at $56.990 and the double cab setting you back at least $61.990 plus on-roads, but eyes light up at the Roadhouse with tales of the vehicle keeping its resale value intact over the years. Behind the bar, Jo confirms: “My son wouldn’t buy anything else. The Toyota dealer in Adelaide wanted to buy his 3-year old one back for $54.000! Even with everything that he’s added on it like the roo-bar, it’s still a pretty good deal. But he wouldn’t let go of it…”

Alf Strzelecki Track MailmanAlf, a legendary character on the Strzelecki Track. 

Alf is the mailman on the punishing Strzelecki Track, arguably one of the roughest roads in the world. He has taken a different tack: “I was about to buy a $54.000 Land Cruiser but saw the Great Wall ute was going for $25.000, I thought I’d give it a go. It paid for itself pretty quick. I’ve done 150.000 km in 3 years [almost 100.000 miles], and yes a few things have fallen off at one point like my roo-bar and the rear stop lights, but all-in-all I’m bloody happy with it!” Wait. 150.000 km in 3 years solely on the Strzelecki Track? “Yeah, I do the Track twice a week and it’s roughly 500 kays long so it adds up.” To 156.000 km exactly. Darren concurs: “I did 90.000km with mine!” Turns out getting stuck in Lyndhurst got me to meet two of the most vocal supporters of the Great Wall brand in the Australian Outback. You can’t make this stuff up. Note to Great Wall: contact Alfie and Darren asap, a goldmine of stories there.

4. Haval H8 Road Train LyndhurstIn Lyndhurst SA

Logically, the few souls also staying for the night in Lyndhurst were more than a little intrigued by the Haval H8. Once the link to Great Wall is established, the fact that this is a different brand altogether doesn’t seem to matter much. Given its more up-market stance, Damo seems to stand out enough to justify its own marque in their eyes. Exterior design gets the local vote, and the interior with leather electric seats also gets the thumbs up. Jo comes out to inspect it in more detail. “Can I see the boot? H8: that’s not a V8 is it?” She may have purchased it on the spot if that was the case… “I like the design, but that spare tyre doesn’t look like it would go very far”. Conflict of interests? With her husband, Jo owns a towing company in Birdsville…

8. Toyota Hilux LyndhurstToyota Hilux, fresh from a punishing run on the – now closed – Strzelecki Track.

The big question around dinner is: is Damo capable enough to endure a very muddy and treacherous Birdsville Track? “You are really taking it for a spin aren’t you? Does it have a low-range 4WD mode?” No it’s an AWD electronic system. “Still, should be arright, then, will be an awesome test for the car.” Took the words out of my mouth… The Ford and Holden die-hards at the bar wouldn’t have a… bar of it and vocally proclaim they will stick with their own utes, thanks. Darren: “Don’t diss Chinese cars until you own one!” I told you, a fan.

6. Road Train LyndhurstIn Lyndhurst

Later on, two haggard bikers make a panting entrance in the roadhouse, covered with mud from head to toe. “Our Colorado just died on us on the Strzelecki Track! We had to take the bikes to get here. It is hell. Very slippery. Took us ages.” Luckily a car drove past them shortly after they broke down and they could use a sat phone to organise towing. As if on cue, the Outback Motors “Erics Rig” Land Cruiser pulls up at the Roadhouse shortly afterwards and, having just obtained special police clearance to drive on the closed Strzelecki Track, promptly drives off into the night on its rescue mission. Jo tries to reassure the bikers: “My husband rescued five Prados two weeks ago from Birdsville. Happens all the time”. Not helping: they are rightfully dejected.

MudThe mud struggle is real.

One of the bikers knows of Haval: he was invited to the brand’s launch in Brisbane by distributor Performax who also imports and converts U.S. full-sized pickup trucks. “Don’t go. You’ll get bogged down and with no sat phone you don’t know how long it’ll take to get rescued”. Jo slips her husband’s business card into my hand with a shy smile. It says Birdsville Transport Service. “Don’t worry. You know who to call if you get stuck.”

Road Train Lyndhurst 2Two road train were stuck in Lyndhurst the night I was there.

As the day becomes dawn and the long night begins, the rain starts again and the odds the road to Marree will reopen tomorrow dwindle down to slim at best. I need to find another way to get to Birdsville. Given the Lyndhurst to Mt Hopeless section of the Strzelecki Track is also closed – echoing the bikers’ daunting warnings – I may have to retrace my steps on the Outback highway and try and take one of the last open tracks to Innamincka, looping east to join Birdsville, all the while hoping the rain stops for good. But that’s a story for another day…

Stay tuned for Part 4: Lyndhurst to Moolawatana.

Europe May 2016: Market soars 15% boosted by Renault and Fiat

Renault Captur Europe May 2016. Picture courtesy eblogauto.roThree years after launch, Renault Captur sales are still up in Europe: +31% in May.

* See the Top 10 best-selling brands and Top 20 models by clicking on the title *

The European new car market posts a euphoric 15% gain in May to 1.326.958 registrations, boosted by very dynamic performances in four of its five largest markets: Italy (+28%), France (+22%), Spain (+19%) and Germany (+12%). Greece (+49%), Lithuania (+47%), Hungary (+45%), Czech Republic (+34%), Cyprus (+31%) and Estonia (+30%) also record impressive gains while only two markets out of 29 post a decline: Ireland (-6%) and Switzerland (-7%). This is the biggest May score since 2012, lifting the year-to-date total up 10% to 6.582.810 units. SUV sales across the continent are up 29% to hit 24.4% of the market, now frankly ahead of the once-dominabt subcompacts at 22% (+11%).

Fiat 500X Europe May 2016Fiat volumes are 26% ahead of May 2015.

Once again scandal-embroiled Volkswagen trails the market with a shy 4% increase to 148.635 sales and 11.2% share, the brand’s lowest for May since 2008. According to JATO Dynamics, Volkswagen SUVs are down 14% and its compact cars down 3%. French manufacturer Renault on the other hand is one of the continent’s engines of growth this month with sales up a stellar 34% to 101.476, buoyed by its home market where it gains 33%. Ford (+5%) and Opel/Vauxhall (+11%) are handicapped by a hesitant UK market and lose share while Peugeot is up 17% in 5th place and Fiat up a fantastic 26% to #7. Again contrasting with its mass market stablemate, Audi shines bright with sales up 19%, winning the luxury race again ahead of Mercedes (+13%) and BMW (+22%)

Vauxhall Astra Europe May 2016. Picture courtesy autocar.co.ukThe Astra nameplate hits its highest European ranking in almost three years. 

If the VW Golf posts a 74th consecutive month in the models ranking position, declining sales pull the star nameplate to its lowest European market share since June 2011 at 3.2%. Reversely, the Renault Clio is up 25% to cling the #2 spot both in May and year-to-date, distancing segment competitors the VW Polo (+16%), Opel Corsa (+10%), Ford Fiesta (-9%) and Peugeot 208 (+30%). The Opel Astra is up 18% to land in 7th place, its highest European ranking since July 2013. The Renault Captur surges 31% to break into the Top 10 for the first time this year and the 5th overall at #9, outselling the Nissan Qashqai to remain the best-selling SUV in Europe for the 2nd time running and the 4th time ever. Below, the Fiat Panda (+20%), Toyota Yaris (+20%), Peugeot 2008 (+24%) and Dacia Sandero (+32%) also frankly outpace the market.

Previous post: Europe April 2016: Discover the Top 335 models and All-brands

Previous month: Europe April 2016: Volkswagen (+2%) lags in market up 9%

One year ago: Europe May 2015: VW Passat confirms Top 10 spot

Full May 2016 Top 10 brands and Top 20 models below.

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Thailand May 2016: Market up 16%, largest gain in over 3 years

Toyota Hilux Revo Thailand May 2016. Picture courtesy caronline.netThe Toyota Hilux is back to #1 in Thailand in May but remains #2 year-to-date. 

* See the Top 35 All-brands and Top 65 models by clicking on the title *

Note the April 2016 update has also been updated with a Top 35 All-brands ranking.

It’s official: the Thai market is out of the woods. With a 16% surge in May to 66.055 registrations, new car sales in Thailand register their 4th month of year-on-year gains in the past seven and its biggest improvement since March 2013. The year-to-date tally is still in negative though at -2% to 302.581 units. After struggling for the past six months, Toyota finally manages to outpace the market with volumes up 24% to 22.244 and 33.7% share, its highest since last October. Isuzu is up 17% to 19.3%, Honda up 11% to 14.9% and Mitsubishi up 27% to 6.5%. Further down, Mazda (+23%), Mercedes (+29%), MG (+180%), Subaru (+27%) and Lexus (+110%) also shine.

Honda Civic Thailand May 2016Outstanding launch in Thailand for the new Honda Civic. 

In the models ranking, after 5 consecutive months of supremacy, the Isuzu D-Max passes back the pole position baton to the Toyota Hilux, but just: at 11.010 vs. 10.549 sales. Never in the past decade had the Hilux been so aggressively challenged, and for now it looks like the FY2016 pole position is well out of reach: after 5 months, the D-Max still has  8.500 sales advantage at 52.797 (+10%) vs. 44.236 (-5%) for the Hilux. Now that local production has resumed with the 1.5 Dual VVT-i engine, the Toyota Vios reclaims the passenger car crown with 3.544 sales (+27%), enough to also install it back to #3 year-to-date. The Honda Civic however is up 5-fold on a year ago thanks to the new generation at 2.880 sales  vs. 1.920 for the Toyota Corolla (+29%). The Nissan Navara (+88%), Toyota Fortuner (+97%) and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (+129%) all owe their spectacular gains to a new model, while among recent launches the Honda BR-V (#19) continues to slide whereas the Suzuki Ciaz (#20) remains solid.

Previous month: Thailand April 2016: Honda Civic up 4-fold to land on podium

One year ago: Thailand May 2015: 8100 new generation Hilux already on the roads

Full May 2016 Top 35 All-brands and Top 65 models below.

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Philippines May 2016: Fortuner, Everest and Montero Sport fight it out

Toyota Fortuner Ford Everest Philippines May 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Toyota Fortuner is #2 overall in the Philippines in May, eclipsing the Ford Everest.

* See the Top 170 All-models ranking by clicking on the title *

New light vehicle sales in the Philippines continue to gallop at record pace with May volumes up a smashing 31% to 30.317 registrations according to the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA). Note this data does not include sales of some key non-affiliated brands such as Hyundai, Chevrolet and Subaru. The year-to-date tally is now up 25% to 134.488 units. Below the Toyota Vios estimated to reign supreme over the models ranking with more than 10% market share, the Toyota Hiace and Wigo also post four-digit sales figures but it’s a string of recently launched SUVs that is setting the Filipino market on fire. The new generation Toyota Fortuner posts an outstanding 1.431 sales in May for a stunning 2nd place overall, while the Ford Everest continues to deliver record volumes at 1.183 this month and the Mitsubishi Montero Sport is estimated to have found over 1.100 new homes for a 2016 total of 5.870. Over the same period, the Everest adds up to 6.037 and the Fortuner to 3.868.

Previous month: Philippines Jan-Apr 2016: Ford Everest climbs to #3, record market

One year ago: Philippines May 2015: Toyota Vios breaks record at 12.4% share

Full January-May 2016 Top 170 All-models Ranking Table below.

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China LCV May 2016: Minitrucks outsell minivans, pickups up 11%

Great Wall Wingle 6 China May 2016. Picture courtesy autohome.com.cnPickup trucks are seeing their first double-digit gains in 3 years in China. 

* See the Top 50 best-selling models by clicking on the title *

As part of a partnership with Chinese consultancy outlet Cedars, we can share with you today Light Commercial Vehicle detailed sales data for China with complete Minivan, Pickup and Mini Truck data by model as well as selected light truck/bus data provided by LMC Automotive. The overall Chinese LCV market continues to suffer from the muted overall economic context of the country, with sales down 16% year-on-year in May to 266.906, a worrying and larger drop than the year-to-date tally down 12% to 1.442.748 deliveries according to LMC.

Wuling Mini Truck China May 2016Mini Trucks outsell Minivans for the first time in China. 

In the detail, a momentous event is happening before our eyes: while minivans are falling faster into oblivion each month -49% to 39.010 in May and -34% year-to-date to 270.186, they are for the first time outsold by the segment that has absorbed much of their fall: mini trucks (aka mini pickups), up another 20% to 42.184 units in May and up 23% to 211.208 so far in 2016. As for pickups, May data confirms the boosting effect of a change in legislation allowing them in the large cities of four provinces for the first time in 12 years (click here for more detail on this). After returning into positive last month for the first time in over two years, pickup sales in China are up a whopping 11% in May to 28.043 units, lifting the year-to-date tally closer to breakeven point at 141.184 (-2.5%).

Wuling Hongguang V China May 2016. Picture courtesy auto.sohu.comThe Wuling Hongguang V is now the best-selling minivan in China. 

The Foton Light Truck keeps the lead despite sales down 7% to 21.369 but is followed closely by the Wuling Mini Truck at 20.716 (+15%), adding up to just under 100.000 sales so far in 2016 (+21%). Note Wuling single cab sales are up 51% in May to 10.457 whereas double cab sales are down 8% to 10.259. YTD, singles are at +31% and doubles at +15%. The Wuling Hongguang V now seems to have found its place in the market with deliveries up 11% to 20.050 this month, well above once-blockbusters Sunshine (-39%) and Rongguang (-44%). The Dongfeng K Series Mini Truck is also hoping the segment greatly at +81% whereas Changan isn’t seeing much transfer to Mini Trucks: the Star Minivan implodes at -87% and the Mini Truck is also down at -15%.

Foton Tunland China May 2016. Picture courtesy autohome.com.cnFoton Tunland sales are up 44% in May. 

The Great Wall Wingle 5 is back inside the overall Top 10 and leads the reinvigorated pickup charge in spite of sales down 2% to 6.056. This is still double the deliveries or any other pickup truck in the Chinese market. The Wingle 5 is followed by the JMC Baodian, Dongfeng Rich, ZX Auto Grand Tiger, the Great Wall Wingle 6 up 39% to 2.067 units and the Foton Tunland up 44% to 1.563. Further down, the Huanghai N2-Series (1.236) and Chana Shenqi F-Series (1.081) are new for 2016.

Previous month: China LCV April 2016: Mini trucks surge 39%, pickups back in positive

One year ago: China LCV May 2015: Foton Light Truck outsells all Wuling models

Full May 2016 Top 50 models Ranking Table below.

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Turkey May 2016: Toyota Corolla and Renault Clio step ahead

Toyota Corolla Turkey May 2016The Toyota Corolla, a local, is the best-selling vehicle in Turkey in May.

* See the Top 45 All-brands and Top 250 All-models by clicking on the title *

The Turkish new light vehicle market is back on the mend in May with sales up a fantastic 15% year-on-year to 93.904 units, single-handedly pulling the year-to-date total into positive territory at +0.3% and 347.277 deliveries. Renault swooshes up 81% year-on-year to a stunning 12.741 sales and 13.6% share, snapping the lead of the brands ranking off Volkswagen, down 3% to 12.436 and 13.2% share. Ford (10.7%) and Fiat (10.3%) follow while Toyota is up 51% to rank 5th ahead of Opel (+21%) and Hyundai (-3%). Dacia (+36%), Mercedes (+37%), Skoda (+29%) and Audi (+35%) all post very dynamic gains whereas Peugeot (-30%) and Volvo (-40%) crumble. Among smaller brands, Suzuki (+2271% thanks to the new Vitara), Land Rover (+52%), Ssangyong (+88%), Jaguar (+450%) and Smart (+380%) make themselves noticed.

VW Tiguan Turkey May 2016. Picture courtesy autobild.deThe new generation boosts the VW Tiguan up to #24 in May. 

In the models ranking, the Toyota Corolla (4.426) and Renault Clio (3.872) both gain two spots on April to step ahead to #1 and #2 respectively, just as their locally-manufactured facelifts enter the market. They distance the Fiat Egea at 3.527 units including 166 hatchbacks. Still leader year-to-date, the Renault Fluence falls to #5 and 3.413 units, just below the Opel Astra up 3 ranks on last month to #4. The Dacia Sandero (#13), Audi A3 (#21) and VW Tiguan (#24) also impress this month in Turkey, while further down the Suzuki Vitara breaks into the Top 100 at #86, the Renault Talisman ranks 99th and we welcome the Nissan Pulsar (#149), Kia Cerato (#151), Mercedes SLC (#182), Infiniti Q30 (#204) and Mercedes GLS (#249) into the Turkish sales charts.

Previous month: Turkey April 2016: Fiat Egea teases Renault Fluence for pole position

One year ago: Turkey May 2015: Doblo pokes Linea for #1 in strike-disrupted market

Full May 2016 Top 45 All-brands and Top 250 All-models below.

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Serbia May 2016: Fiat Tipo breaks into Top 10

Fiat Tipo Serbia May 2016Serbia is the 2nd country where the new Fiat Tipo has broken into the Top 10. 

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

According to data shared with us by Central European market data specialists CE Auto, the Serbian new car market is up 7% year-on-year in May to 2.375 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total up 26% to 11.220 units. The locally-produced Fiat 500L continues to dominate with 6% share above the Skoda Octavia, Opel Astra and Dacia Sandero while the Hyundai i20 makes a dynamic appearance at #5 with 78 units sold. But the main event in the May Serbian ranking is the Fiat Tipo breaking into the Top 10 for the first time thanks to 54 sales and 2.3% share, making Serbia only the second country in the world where the new low-cost Fiat has managed to insert itself inside the Top 10 along with Turkey where it is manufactured and called Egea.

Previous month: Serbia April 2016: Fiat 500L outpaces Skoda Octavia

One year ago: Serbia May 2015: Locally produced Fiat 500L reclaims top spot

Full May 2016 Top 10 models Ranking Table below.

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Bosnia & Herzegovina May 2016: VW Golf edges past Octavia for #1 YTD

VW Golf Bosnia May 2016. Picture courtesy autoexpress.co.ukThe VW Golf is the best-selling car in Bosnia so far in 2016, for just one sale. 

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

According to information revealed by Central European market data specialists CE Auto, the Bosnian new light vehicle market gains a stunning 24% year-on-year in May to 797 registrations, lifting the year-to-date total up 24% to 3.576 units. The VW Golf leaps 3 spots on last month to claim the May pole position thanks to 7.2% share, also edging past the Skoda Octavia for the #1 spot YTD for just one unit at 196 vs. 195. The Opel Astra is knocked down to #2, while the Skoda Fabia is back up 9 ranks to #4 and the Opel Corsa is solid again at #5.

Previous month: Bosnia & Herzegovina April 2016: Opel Astra soars to top spot

One year ago: Bosnia & Herzegovina May 2015: Skoda Octavia takes control

Full May 2016 Top 10 models Ranking Table below.

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Rep of Macedonia May 2016: Citroen C-Elysée surges to top spot

Citroen C-Elysee Macedonia May 2016The Citroen C-Elysee is #1 in the Republic of Macedonia in May.

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

Based on data unveiled by Central European market data specialists www.ceauto.co.hu, new car sales in the Republic of Macedonia are down 4% year-on-year to 432 registrations, but the year-to-date tally remains frankly in positive territory at +13% and 2.205 deliveries. As it was the case a year ago, the Citroen C-Elysée takes the lead of the Macedonian sales charts thanks to 25 units sold, yet this is not enough to allow the nameplate to break into the year-to-date Top 10. The VW Golf and Kia Sportage share the 2nd spot with 18 sales, ahead of the VW Passat, Seat Leon and Opel Astra. Still leader year-to-date, the Dacia Duster reappears inside the monthly Top 10 but can’t do better than a 7th place in May.

Previous month: Rep of Macedonia April 2016: VW Passat best-seller

One year ago: Rep of Macedonia May-June 2015: Citroen C-Elysée impresses

Full May 2016 Top 10 models Ranking Table below.

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Moldova May 2016: Hyundai Tucson confirms leadership

Hyundai Tucson Moldova May 2016. Picture courtesy largus.frThe Hyundai Tucson is again the best-selling vehicle in Moldova this month. 

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

According to data published by Central European market data specialists CE Auto, new light vehicle sales in Moldova are up 4% year-on-year in May to 313 units, lifting the year-to-date total up 5% to 1.472 registrations. Down to #5 in April, the Hyundai Tucson returns to the pole position it holds year-to-date thanks to 23 sales and 7.3% share, sharing the limelight with the Opel Corsa this month. The Dacia Logan is back up to #3, ahead of the Skoda Octavia and Hyundai Santa Fe. Finally, notice the Mercedes GLE posting a second consecutive month inside the Top 10 at #9.

Previous month: Moldova April 2016: Suzuki Vitara most popular

One year ago: Moldova May 2015: UAZ Bukhanka jumps to 2nd place

Full May 2016 Top 10 models Ranking Table below.

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