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Finland 1959-1962 Moskvitsh reigns, Skoda and Volkswagen follow

Moskvitsh is the most popular brand in Finland for four consecutive years.

* See the Top 65 All-brands ranking by clicking on the title *

After a freak year in 1958, 1959 marks the return of Moskvitsh atop the Finnish brands ranking with 16.8% of a market up 49.8% to 21.291. Skoda (+327%) is back to the 2nd spot it held in 1957 while Volkswagen (-21%) is back down to #3, also its ranking in 1957. Fiat is stable and ranks at a best-ever 4th place, remaining above Renault (+41%), Peugeot (-4%) and Opel (+5%). Volga is up 35% but down one spot to #8 while Simca (+193%) breaks into the Top 10 at #10, followed by Wartburg (+236%). Goggomobil reaches its highest volume in Finland at 250 sales in 18th place.

Wartburg remains in the Finnish Top 5 over most of the period.

In 1960, new car sales are up 10.4% to 23.497 units, and Moskvitsh improves its market share to 22.9% thanks to sales up 51%, with Skoda (+16%) in tow again at 14.2% and Volkswagen (-17%) rounding up the podium for the second year running. Ford (+56%) is up five spots to #4, Wartburg (+55%) is up six to #5 and Simca (+25%) up three to #7 but Renault (-9%), Opel (-18%) and Fiat (-28%) struggle. Trabant is up 79% to #12, Panhard up 53% to #15, Volvo up 73% to #16, Lloyd up 194% to #19 and Borgward up 115% to #21.

Trabant hits a record #11 in 1961.

The Finnish market is up 17.1% in 1961 to 27.527 registrations and Moskvitsh remains the most popular marque in the country, however seeing its share thaw to 20.1% due to sales up just 3%. Skoda (+11%) also sees a decline in market share to 13.5% but Volkswagen surges 78% to 10.8%, ahead of Ford (+45%) and Wartburg (+65%) also strong. Simca (+8%) overtakes Renault to lead French carmakers in Finland at #6 with Peugeot up 28% to #8. Trabant is up 0.5% to reach what would remain its highest Finnish annual ranking ever at #11. Vauxhall (+180%), Hillman (+105%), Morris (+60%) and Austin (+51%) lead the English charge.

Datsun arrives in 1962 and is the first Japanese carmaker to be sold in Finland.

1962 is when Finnish new car sales really take off at +48.1% to 40.780, coinciding with the end of rationing restrictions post-World War II. Moskvitsh is still the best-selling brand but with deliveries up just 10% its share sinks over five percentage points to 14.8%. Volkswagen on the other hand continues to surge at +70% to 12.4% share, dislodging Skoda (+28%) from its 2nd spot while Ford (+95%) is the fourth carmaker to manage a double-digit market share. Wartburg (+6%) remains 5th but drops two percentage points of share. Opel (+87%), Peugeot (+75%) and Volga (+70%) are the most dynamic in the remainder of the Top 10, with Volvo (+194%), Austin (+129%) and Mercedes (+87%) aggressively knocking at the door. Zastava (#22) makes its entrance but the more symbolic arrival is Datsun, the first ever Japanese brand to be sold in Finland, with 87 sales in 1962.

Previous post: Finland 1958: Volkswagen interrupts Moskvitsh reign

Full Year 1959, 1960, 1961 and 1962 Top 65 All-brands rankings below.

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