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World: Should Hyundai Elantra and i30 sales be counted together?

Hyundai i30 Australia June 2013. Picture courtesy of news.com.auAustralian Hyundai i30

I always make a point of keeping you up-to-date about the methodology I use for BestSellingCarsBlog’s worldwide models rankings. One of the recent changes included counting the Dacia/Renault Logan and Sandero together as the second generation of both models are now the sedan and hatchback version of one single model. Now onto potentially the next one, and I’d really like to hear your views. If the first generation Hyundai i30 had nothing to do with the Elantra, the current model is clearly the hatchback version of the Elantra (sedan). One of the rules I follow in my worldwide rankings is that the model must be called the same in at least some parts of the world. This way the Toyota Auris, called Corolla in Australia notably, is counted within Corolla worldwide sales whereas the VW Jetta isn’t counted as part of worldwide Golf sales, also because the two models are getting further apart from each other with different renewal cycles anyway.

Hyundai Elantra GT World July 2013. Picture courtesy of www.motortrend.comAmerican Hyundai Elantra GT

I would not even contemplate counting i30 and Elantra sales together if the i30 was called i30 everywhere on the planet. But it is called Elantra GT in North America (USA and Canada) which is still the #2 car market in the world, so hard to dismiss. Do you think this is the hatchback and sedan version of one single model? Would it place Hyundai in a more honest position in the fight for the title of best-selling nameplate in the world with both the Corolla and Focus including hatchback and sedan versions in their sales? If we look at the latest worldwide models ranking (May), the Elantra/i30 combo adds up to 95,526 sales vs. 102,374 for the Toyota Corolla and 96,049 for the Ford Focus. A completely different picture indeed.

Hyundai Elantra. Picture courtesy of motortrend.comAmerican Hyundai Elantra

Another interesting development if we count i30 and Elantra together is that it becomes Australia’s best-selling passenger car in June with 4,599 sales vs.4,197 for the Toyota Corolla and 3,672 for the Mazda3 as Joshua Dowling from news.com.au points out. So what? So it would be only the 2nd month in history after June 1998 when the Hyundai Excel took the lead of the sales charts that a Hyundai model is the best-seller in Australia! And if the Excel performance was a freak event, judging by how Hyundai has been steadily growing in Australia, to the point of now threatening home-grown Holden for 2nd place, it could very well happen again very soon and very often…

So what do you think? Elantra and i30 together or not? Please comment on here, I would love to hear your views.

This Post Has 17 Comments
  1. Matt :Hey Matt, that’s a seemingly straightforward but actually quite complex scenario you’ve posed there (and thank you for posing it – I used to think I was the only person in the world who thought about stuff like this!!). If we start thinking about coupling models like i30 and Elantra, it begs the question (as others have noted) of where you stop coupling or uncoupling and therein lies the potentially for far more complexity than you really want. The Japanese / US / Australian Corolla is a good example – then add the Auris into the mix as well! The VW Golf / Jetta combo’s another good one. But what about all the model sharing and badge engineering that goes on in Japan, for example? Do you lump all of those models together because they are, to all I tents and purposes, exactly the same vehicles that are simply being marketed by different brands under different names? Or do you keep them separate by virtue of them being differently branded? In which case where do you draw the line with brand as a differentiator? If the top level brand is enough of a difference to keep sales of badge-engineered twins and triplets uncoupled, why shouldn’t the different branding of individual models under the same brand be sufficient to keep sales separate as well? And who knows what the right answer is, but it’s definitely a fascinating debate to have! Keep up the awesome work Cheers,Matt (Sydney)

    Hi,

    I totally agree with Matt.
    It’s good to have this discussion.
    So, keep the numbers separate.
    And add a footnote with some explenation.

    Cheers,
    Benz

  2. Hey Matt, that’s a seemingly straightforward but actually quite complex scenario you’ve posed there (and thank you for posing it – I used to think I was the only person in the world who thought about stuff like this!!). If we start thinking about coupling models like i30 and Elantra, it begs the question (as others have noted) of where you stop coupling or uncoupling and therein lies the potentially for far more complexity than you really want. The Japanese / US / Australian Corolla is a good example – then add the Auris into the mix as well! The VW Golf / Jetta combo’s another good one. But what about all the model sharing and badge engineering that goes on in Japan, for example? Do you lump all of those models together because they are, to all I tents and purposes, exactly the same vehicles that are simply being marketed by different brands under different names? Or do you keep them separate by virtue of them being differently branded? In which case where do you draw the line with brand as a differentiator? If the top level brand is enough of a difference to keep sales of badge-engineered twins and triplets uncoupled, why shouldn’t the different branding of individual models under the same brand be sufficient to keep sales separate as well? And who knows what the right answer is, but it’s definitely a fascinating debate to have! Keep up the awesome work 🙂
    Cheers,
    Matt (Sydney)

  3. I see your point: some cars have different badges (Elantra GT and i30) while they are actually the same model. While other cars (like the Corolla) have the same badge but are sold as different models (Japanese Corolla versus American Corolla vs Australian Corolla). It’s a very difficult matter. Even more confusing when Toyota USA adds sales of the Corolla and Matrix model together as one ‘Corolla family’, even when they have different names.
    Best selling nameplate versus the best selling car model (which is also debatable, will it include hatch, sedan, wagon, mpv version…)
    I think that a global best seller list cannot be made properly unfortunately.

    However, I gathered some interesting sales data info you might be interested in, like data for the USA. I will contact you soon.

  4. Definitely. All Hatchs should be coupled with their sedan siblings. The Cruze hatch should add with the Cruze sedan as well.

  5. The Elantra GT should be counted together with i30, but the Elantra sedan should be separated, it’s a different car, like the Renault Fluence is for the Mégane.

  6. Tough call. My first reaction would be no. Lots of people here ( including myself ) keep complaining about different cars being bunched together, like on the German sales charts, and these two ARE different cars. Then again, they’re as different as the Civic hatch and sedan, which are counted together, or the Golf and Jetta, which are counted separately. So, for me it’s a no, but i can see your point.

    Would this make the Elantra nameplate the best selling car in the world?

  7. Hi Matt
    In South Africa the Auris is not known as Corolla but they are counted together as Corolla(Toyota SA includes Verso numbers as Corolla sales as well).

  8. The Elantra GT should be counted in the total i30 sales globally. The Elantra is a separate model. If you start to group all C segment cars from the one manufacturer together then do you next group i20 and Accent as one car? What about Cruze/Astra/Verano/Excelle… they’re all GM C segment cars. That car would probably be the top seller in the world…

  9. Hi Matt,

    Please do NOT add them together.

    What you can do is add a note under the list, where you can explain this and show a total number of both model names.

    Your website is awesome.

    Thanks.

    Kind regards,

    Benz

  10. I think i30 and Elantra should be counted as two different cars, because if Hyundai wnated to count them together they should call them as i40 – limo version and kombi/wagon wersion and that’s it.

    If we start to combine car sales will be a mess. For example. Imagine Ford didn’t change the nameplate Escort to Focus! They both are representers of C-clmarket segment, they are just different generations of the same middle segment of Ford, so 20 000 000 Escorts + 13 000 000 Focuses = 33 000 000, which is almost second place after Corolla and even ahead of F-Series. But since Ford decied to figure out a new name, so now we have different numbers.

    Toyota realized that Europeans don’t want to by Corolla and renamed it to Auris, this is Toyota’s mistake and that’s why now we must have Corolla sales and Auris sales.

    That’s my personal opinion.

  11. Personally, I think cars should be counted based only on their model names. If different names applied to, let say Brio hatch, Amaze sedan, or Mirage hatch , Attrage sedan, even though they share parts, engines, platforms, underpinnings, etc, they should be counted separately, if possible. Another example for separate counting would be Avanza & Xenia, Rush & Terios, Gran Max, Luxio, APV, Mega Carry, etc

  12. Hi Matt,

    Wouldn’t be easier and less confusing to follow the methodology the carmakers use? Toyota clearly counts the Auris as part of Corolla worldwide sales, same as Ford does with 2 different versions of the Focus. VW clearly prefers to count Golf and Jetta sales separately on their press releases so I’m assuming Hyundai does too or they would have already lumped them together on monthly sales releases.

    It is a bit confusing when at the end of the year, different car makers or publications publish different models as the worldwide best sellers. That’s my two cents, otherwise keep up the great work your doing, I’m a big fan of your site!

  13. salut Matt
    I think elantra and i30 shouldn’t be counted together .Different name/different car .it’s not fair
    because Ford,Toyota Mazda and others use the same name for hatch or sedan but it’s easier.
    I think Auris and Corollas should be counted apart too even if it’s the same car ( readers can do the add themselves);the same for Dacia / Renault/ Samsung and other brands which sell
    same cars with different name.

    yves noumea

  14. Of course~

    I30 is elantra’s hatchback in US,and I think i30 is elantra’s hatchback,it is

    they should be counted together

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