* See the Top 50 best-selling brands and Top 324 models by clicking on the title *
Still the engine of the European market despite the UK stepping up, the health of German sales has a large impact on how the continent fares as a whole. 2015 is a very solid year so far in Germany: up 6% over the first 3 months of the year to 757,630 deliveries. As if Volkswagen’s domination of its home market wasn’t implacable already, the German manufacturer posts the largest year-on-year improvement in the entire Top 18, with registrations up a whopping 14% to 169.058 and 22.3% share vs. 20.9% a year ago. The 3 luxury brands follow as they did last year but Audi (65.627) is now getting dangerously close to Mercedes (65.878) for the #1 luxury spot while BMW is a step below (58.875).
Opel, Ford, Skoda and Renault all get distanced and lose market share, while Hyundai (+10%), Fiat (+10%), Suzuki (+43%), Porsche (+36%), Smart (+49%), Mitsubishi (+58%) and most spectacularly Jeep (+91%) all deliver outstanding results inside the Top 30. Further down, notice Infiniti (+87%) and Lamborghini (+155%) at markedly higher levels than in 2014.
Over on the models side, Volkswagen’s stunning improvement becomes clear: boosted by the new Sportsman variant (separate sales unavailable), the Golf is up 26% to 8.7% share – almost 3 times any other nameplate, while the new generation Passat lifts the nameplate up 41% to 2nd place overall with 23.090 deliveries and 3% share. The Mercedes C-Class (+14%) and Opel Corsa (+16%) also benefit from their recent updates, the Skoda Octavia inches up one spot to #8 which would be its best-ever national ranking if it can keep it up until the end of the year, and the Audi A4 is getting a second wind, up 12% to re-enter the Top 10 at #9, overtaking the BMW 3 Series at #12 (-20%) – the latter in harsh decline mainly due to its coupe/convertible variants now being sold under the 4 Series nameplate (+79%).
Apart from the C-Class, other Mercedes best-sellers are struggling so far in 2015: the B-Class is stable, the E-Class down 14% and the A-Class down 21%. Reversely, with the Active Tourer MPV now in full bloom, the BMW 2 Series jumps to #25, the Ford Kuga (+27%) and Opel Adam (+39%) have finally found their market at home and the Swift (up a spectacular 137%) along with the arrival of the Celerio (#171) and Vitara (#181) are behind Suzuki’s strong gains this year in Germany.
Removing Skoda and Seat nameplates owned by the Volkswagen Group, there are just 3 foreigners inside the German Top 40: the Fiat 500 (#28), Nissan Qashqai (#31) and Renault Clio (#40). Notice also the clear improvement of the Mazda3 cracking the Top 50 at #41 (+26%), as well as Hyundai placing 3 models inside the Top 50 vs. just one a year ago: the i10 (+47%), ix35 (+36%) and i30 (+5%). The Mercedes V-Class leads newcomers at #53 followed by the Smart Forfour at #69, Nissan Pulsar at #94 and Citroen C4 Cactus at #111.
Full Q1 2015 Top 50 brands and Top 324 models vs. Full Q1 2014 figures below.