* See the Top 40 All-brands and Top 50 models by clicking on the title *
The Hungarian new car market continues to recover from the now-distant financial crisis of 2009-2010, with sales up another 25% in 2016 to 96.555 units (excluding commercial vehicles) after gaining 14% in 2015 and 23% in 2014. Strikingly, despite six consecutive years of growth since the low of 2010 (54.165 units), Hungarian sales are still a far cry from its all-time high of 234.000 units established back in 2004… Considered a local due to its factory in Esztergom in the north of the country at the border with Slovakia, Japanese carmaker Suzuki used to obliterate the Hungarian market before the crisis – it held a mammoth 23.5% market share in 1999 – but had faltered so far this decade. 2016 marks the first year since 2009 that Suzuki returns to the pole position in Hungary, both in the brands and the models ranking with the Vitara.
Suzuki doubles the market growth this year at +50% to hit 11.7% share vs. 9.7% a year ago, going from #4 in 2015 to #1 this year and the only carmaker above 10% share. Ford (+26%) gains one spot to #2 but Opel (+6%) drops from the top spot to #3 and sees its share thaw from 10.4% to 9.7%. Skoda (+12%) also drops two to #4. Inside the Top 10, Toyota (+42%), Dacia (+40%) and Renault (+41%) all beat the market while outside, Jaguar (+203%), Land Rover (+105%), Jeep (+98%), Hyundai (+76%), Lexus (+67%), Alfa Romeo (+64%) Honda (+59%) and Mercedes (+35%) are the most impressive. An interesting return is Russian carmaker Lada after a few years of absence in the country. With a lineup composed of the antediluvian 4×4 (aka Niva), the Granta and the Kalina, Lada sells 1.155 units and ranks #21 in between Mitsubishi and Seat: a reasonable score indeed.
Thanks to sales up 75% to 6.538 for its first full year of sales, the new Vitara becomes the first Suzuki to lead the Hungarian sales charts since the Swift did so in 2008. It has a safe 1.250 sales margin over last year’s Nb. 1, the Skoda Octavia up just 11% to 5.5% share. Thanks to the new generation, cumulative sales of the Opel Astra shoot up 46% to hit 4.3% share but the nameplate remains in third place above the Ford Focus (+15%), Dacia Duster (+56%) and VW Passat (+31%). The Renault Clio breaks into the Top 10 at #9 – it didn’t rank in the 2015 Top 20, the Hyundai Tucson lands at #13 for its first full year in market, the Toyota Yaris is up 62% to #14 and the Ford Kuga up 50% to #15. The Suzuki Baleno, a 2016 launch, points its bonnet in 48th position.
Full Year 2016 Top 40 All-brands and Top 50 models vs. Full Year 2015 data below.