* NOW UPDATED with Top 30 All-brands, Top 55 locals and Top 133 foreigners *
The South Korean new car market is down a harsh 11% year-on-year in August to 123.463 registrations, with local carmakers down 11% and foreigners down 13%. Yet the year-to-date tally remains in positive territory at +4% to 1.189.532 units. Locals are up 5% but foreigners down 7%. Hyundai, handicapped by repeated strikes at his local factories, is hit the hardest at -18% to 42.112 sales and 34.1% share of local brands vs. 37.1% year-to-date, with sister brand Kia registering the 2nd largest drop among locals at -10% to 37.404 and 30.3%. GM Korea falls slightly slower than the market at -8% to remain third while Renault Samsung (+24%) holds onto its newly acquired 4th spot ahead of Ssangyong (+2%), all this solely thanks to the tremendous success of the SM6 aka Renault Talisman, back inside the overall Top 10 in August with 4.577 deliveries or 59% of the brand’s sales this month.
The big story among foreign carmakers is the skidding into oblivion of Volkswagen, imploding down 98% to just 76 sales at #23 now that its entire lineup is stifled with a stop sale order. Only the VW CC (23) and Touareg (53) remain in the August sales charts, all other nameplates disappear. Audi (-83%) is also hit and drops to #15 vs. #8 year-to-date. Mercedes on the other hand is faring beautifully at +32% to 4.835 sales and 3.9% share, well ahead of BMW at 3.047 (-16%). Land Rover (+299%) and Jaguar (+332%) are the best foreign performers in August, followed by Lexus (+148%), Ford (+115%), Mini (+87%) and Honda (+76%).
Over in the models ranking, the Hyundai Avante is up 3 spots on July to land in pole position for only the third time this year after February and June and despite deliveries freefalling 23% to 6.756. In fact, 6 of the Top 7 August best-sellers drop significantly vs. August 2015: the Chevrolet Spark (-16%), Kia Morning (-21%), Sorento (-25%), Hyundai Sonata (-28%) and Santa Fe (-30%). Only the Kia Carnival (+18%) goes against the grain in 6th place.
The Ssangyong Tivoli is back inside the Top 10 with 4.357 sales. The Hyundai Tucson (+31%), Chevrolet Malibu (+102%), Kia K7 (+117%) and Chevrolet Impala (+118%) post impressive gains while other recent launches mark a pause: the Kia Niro is down 2 spots on July to #23, the Genesis EQ900 is stable at #25 and the Hyundai Ioniq down 4 to #32. Finally, we welcome the Chevrolet Volt in the South Korean sales charts in August with a lonely two sales for now. The Mercedes E-Class (+60%) and C-Class (-6%) lead foreign models above the BMW 5 Series, 3 Series and Mercedes S Class. The Ford Explorer jumps to #6, the Honda Accord is up to #12 and the Cadillac CT6 makes its first appearance at #43.
Full August 2016 Top 30 All-brands and Top 55 locals and Top 133 foreigners below.