* Now updated with the Top 45 All-brands and Top 175 models – click on title to see *
The Italian new car market gains 6.2% in February to 183.777 registrations, which means the year-to-date total is now up 8.1% on the same period last year at 355.656 units. Once again though, this growth can be labelled as artificial. Italian sales are pushed up by business sales up 43.9% to 33.700 units and 18.2% market share as well as rental sales up 6.3% to 45.555 and 24.6% share. Long-term rentals do the heavy work with a 21.1% gain to 24.445 while short-term rentals are down 6.8% to 21.110. Private sales are actually down 2.5% to 105.778 and 57.2% share vs. 60% year-to-date and 62.1% a year ago in February 2016. A caveat to this analysis is the fact that long-term leases can intersect with both private sales and business sales.
The Renault Clio signs the largest year-on-year gain in the Top 10. Picture by quattroruote.it
Brand-wise, the entire Top 10 remains unchanged on January, with Fiat remaining largely in command at home, following the market at +6% to 38.896 deliveries and 21.2% share. It distances Volkswagen (+7%), Ford (+2%), Renault (+5%), Peugeot (+3%) and Opel (+3%). Toyota (+15%) and Citroen (+17%) deliver the biggest year-on-year gains in the Top 10. Further down, let’s single out Kia (+12%). Nissan (+12%), Skoda (+21%), Alfa Romeo (+23%), Honda (+33%), Seat (+34%) and Suzuki (+83%). Among smaller brands, Maserati (+122%), Infiniti (+130%) and Jaguar (+154%) shine, all boosted by their new SUV lineup.
Over in the models aisle, the Fiat Panda edges past the market growth at +8% to comfortably retain the pole position at home with 15.997 units. It distances the Lancia Ypsilon (+6%) back to its long-term 2nd place and the Fiat 500L (+8%), this month the leader of the 500 series as the Fiat 500 drops back down to #5 from #2 in January and the 500X is up 7 spots on last month to #7. The Renault Clio (+23%) signs the largest year-on-year increase in the Top 10. Outside, the Hyundai i10 (+43%), Nissan Qashqai (+43%), Ford Kuga (+44%), Citroen C3 (+54%) and Fiat Tipo (+79%) impress, but none as much as the VW Tiguan, up 5-fold or 379% on its January 2016 score thanks to the new generation.
Among recent launches, the Toyota C-HR is up one spot on January to #28, the Suzuki Ignis is up 18 spots to break into the Top 50 for the first time at #42 and the Audi Q2 repeats at #46. Looking into the segment rankings in more detail the Fiat Tipo remains the best-selling station wagon in Italy with 1.069 ahead of the Audi A4 (1.024), Ford Focus (938) and Skoda Octavia (821). It also leads year-to-date at 2.664 units above the Audi A4 (1.849), Peugeot 308 (1.779) and Ford Focus (1.670). The Toyota C-HR once again leads the hybrid sales charts with 1.599 units or 93% of its total sales, distancing the Toyota Yaris (1.153), Auris (868), RAV4 (495) and Kia Niro (310). Year-to-date, the C-HR adds up to 3.141 above the Yaris (2.384), Auris (1.368) and RAV4 (930).
Full February 2017 Top 45 All-brands and Top 175 models below.