* NOW UPDATED with the Top 293 All-models! Click on title to see – thanks to STAC *
After snatching the European pole position from the VW Golf in November last year, the Fiat Punto confirmed its new supremacy by staying on top for a further 3 consecutive months up until February 1996, peaking at 62,592 sales in January, still to this date (2012) the Punto nameplate’s monthly volume record in Europe.
It all seemed like the Punto would stop 13 years of VW Golf domination over European sales but it was not to be. For the remainder of the year Punto sales dropped significantly and the VW Golf kept the title of best selling car in Europe in 1996 with 634,611 sales, down 4% vs. 560,700 for the Punto, down 8%.
In third position and up 2 spots and 13% thanks to its facelift, the Ford Fiesta sells 543,712 units and passes the Opel Astra, down 11% to #4 and 509,929 sales. The Opel Corsa is up one spot to #5, ahead of the Ford Escort (-4%). Excellent performance of the VW Polo: after finishing 1995 up 142% it gains a further 31% in 1996 to rank #7 with 425,740 units sold. The Renault Megane (including the Megane Scenic) breaks into the Top 10 for its first full year of sales at an excellent 357,356 units. Notice also the Fiat Bravo/Brava up to #15 with 269,296 sales.
Full Year 1996 Top 293 + Jan to May monthly Top 10 Ranking Tables below.