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World 2013 – The 20 biggest car markets: China, Indonesia, Canada, Australia & Argentina hit records

Bali Indonesia Picture courtesy of stefan.bernsmann via FlickrIndonesia is at an all-time high for the 4th year running. Photo © stefan.bernsmann.

* See the Top 20 biggest car markets in the world in 2013 by clicking on the title! *

To put a little perspective on all the Full Year 2013 data I have been publishing on BSCB over the past month, it is now time for our traditional ‘world Top 20 markets’ summary. The main event in the ranking this year is China becoming the first ever country to purchase over 20 million vehicles in one year, passing that mark on December 1 to finish 2013 at 21.98 million units. That’s a huge 14% improvement on 2012 in spite of all the car purchase restrictions now in place in all the main cities in the country, which put the 30 million units predicted for 2020 well on target.

Shanghai night traffic. Picture courtesy of Jacqtai via FlickrIn 2013, China became the first ever car market to pass 20 million annual units. Photo © Jacqtai.

The second big worldwide car market trend this year is the ‘pausing’ of the 3 behemoths once called emerging markets: Brazil experiences its first year-on-year decline in a decade, down 2% to 3.58 million units, India is down a surprising 7% to 2.93 million and Russia is down 5% to 2.78 million. Most big European markets are also a little sad: Germany is down 4%, France down 6% to its lowest in 15 years and Italy down 7%.

Sydney Australia 2013 Picture courtesy of jordie23 via FlickrSecond consecutive all-time record year for Australia. Photo © jordie23.

Reversely and continuing a trend observed in 2012, all main saturated Anglo-Saxon markets are going gangbusters, clearly proving they are not quite saturated just yet: the US is up 8% to 15.6 million sales, its highest level in 7 years, the UK is up an astounding 11% in a depressed European context to 2.26 million units, Canada is up 4% to a record 1.74 million registrations and Australia is up 3% to deliver a second consecutive all-time record year at 1.14 million sales.

Buenos Aires 2013. Picture courtesy of piper969 via FlickrArgentina is with China the fastest growing market in the Top 20. Photo © piper969.

Thailand was the superstar in 2012 when it gained 81% to reach 1.44 million units, and it paid the price this year: down 6% to 1.35 million but still #12 market in the world. Two additional countries reach all-time high levels in 2013: Indonesia lodges a 4th consecutive record year, going from 486,088 sales in 2009 to 1.23 million this year, and Argentina is the fastest growing market in the Top 20 along with China, up 14% to a best-ever 955,023 units. The demise of Iran (-28%) means Spain is back within the Top 20 at #20.

One year ago: World 2012 – The Top 20 biggest car markets: Thailand shoots up!

Two years ago: World 2011 – The 20 biggest car markets: Russia on the up!

Full Year 2013 Top 20 biggest car markets in the world below.

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