* See the Top 10 best-selling models and brands by clicking on the title *
New car sales in Europe register their strongest year-on-year gains since last March at +7% to 1.12 million units, lifting the year-to-date total up 5.7% to 11.02 million deliveries, the first time since 2007 that over 11 million European new cars find a buyer in 10 months. 25 of the 29 countries included in these statistics lodge year-on-year increases and all the Big 5 do so as well except France (-4%) as detailed in a previous BSCB update. Brand-wise, Volkswagen (+6%) and Ford (+4%) stay on top but slightly under-perform the market while Renault is back on the podium in spite of sales up just 6% vs. 10% for Opel/Vauxhall down one spot on September, a month boosted by the strong UK market. Mercedes (+10%), Audi (+8%) and BMW (+7%) all shine and Skoda posts another Top 10 month above Fiat.
The VW Golf remains the most popular nameplate on the continent by a country mile but being now one year past the launch of the 7th generation, its YOY growth decelerates to 5% to 45.522 sales. That’s 18.000 more than the #2 best-seller, lil sis the VW Polo taking full advantage of its refresh with sales improved by a huge 28% year-on-year. It remains #4 year-to-date below the Ford Fiesta down to #4 this month and the Renault Clio back up two spots to #3. The Opel Corsa continues to be boosted by strong rebates all across the continent on the outgoing model, up 23% on October 2013 to #5, the Skoda Octavia is back up 6 spots on last month to #6, now threatening the Nissan Qashqai for 8th place YTD and the Audi A3 is up a beautiful 14% at #8.
A significant move happens just outside the Top 10: while the Peugeot 208 is down another disappointing 11% to #10 and 16,057 units, its compact stablemate the Peugeot 308 posts a 50% year-on-year increase to stop just 239 units short off both the 208 and a Top 10 ranking, up 6 spots to September to #11 and 15,818 sales. It’s only a matter of time before the 308 reclaims a spot among the 10 most popular nameplates in Europe, as the very successful station wagon reaches its cruising rhythm across the continent. For the record, the first generation 308 only managed to break into Europe’s Top 10 twice: in June and July 2009 when it ranked #10 each time. This generation has the potential to improve on these scores over the next couple of years. Note also the Renault Captur (+10%), Peugeot 2008 (+12%) and Dacia Duster (+72%) continuing their seemingly unstoppable progression.
Previous monthly post: Europe September 2014: Now with Top 340 models and All-brands
Full October 2014 Top 10 models and brands Ranking Tables below.