* See the Top 50 brands, Top 335 models and Top 20 private sales by clicking on the title *
As we have witnessed in Spain (+48%), France (+40%) and to a lesser extent Italy (+10%), the largest market in Europe, Germany, is also totally biased by pre-WLTP stock clearances by a selection of manufacturers. Overall August sales are up 25% year-on-year to 316.405, with (artificial) fleet registrations solely responsible for this surge at +38.3% to 213.257 units and 67.4% share vs. just 61% a year ago in August 2017. This lifts the year-to-date tally up 6.4% to 2.473.284. As a reminder, new Europe-wide WLTP emissions rules, actually triggered by Volkswagen’s 2015 emissions scandal, came into place on September 1 meaning all manufacturers having non-compliant stock must get rid of it before that date, as their sale will be a lot more complicated afterwards. The VW Group, which recently announced only half of its lineup was WLTP-compliant, is the biggest culprit at home this month, as it was in July. Overall VW Group deliveries are up a whopping 46% in August to 41% share vs. 34.9% in August 2017, lifting its YTD tally up 14% to 965.641.
In the detail, almost all VW Group brands outpace the market: Volkswagen shoots up 46% to 20.1% share, Audi is up 45% to 8.9%, snapping the #2 YTD spot off Mercedes in the process and Seat surges 93% to artificially smash two records it established just last month: volume (17.220 vs. 14.016) and share (5.4% vs. 4.4%), outselling Skoda for the first time. Lamborghini (+276%), Porsche (+61%) and Bentley (+32%) also take off but Skoda (+18%) is a little muted. Renault is also artificially pushing sales in August at +102% to leap up to 5th place overall with 17.865 sales and 5.6%, the French carmaker’s highest scores this decade by far while Dacia (+53%) remains at an all-time high #11 for the third time after August 2017 and last month. Mitsubishi (+65%) hits its highest German ranking this decade at #15 with Morgan (+550%), Ferrari (+304%), Lotus (+122%), Jeep (+91%), Jaguar (+88%), Rolls-Royce (+86%) and Subaru (+74%) also posting extravagant gains.
Expectedly, the VW Group dominates the August German models ranking, starting with Volkswagen monopolising the Top 5 for the second time in its 80-year history after last May, this time with the Golf (+5%), Tiguan (+70%), Passat (+50%), Polo (+125%) and T-Roc, finally letting its hair down at #5 – a ranking it reached last April in neighbouring Austria and last May in Switzerland – up a staggering 8 spots on its previous best of #13 established just last month. The Audi A4 (+64%) and Seat Leon (+43%), hitting a new record market share at 1.9%, mean the VW Group monopolises the Top 7 vs. Top 9 last month, but with the Skoda Fabia (+63%), Audi A3 (+36%) and Skoda Octavia (-15%) it places 10 nameplates in the Top 11, the odd one out being the Mercedes C-Class (-1%) at #8.
The Renault Captur soars 119% to #15, its highest ranking ever in Germany (previous best #26 in July 2017), the Seat Arona is up 8 spots on July to break into the German Top 20 for the first time at #18, with the Renault Megane (+152%), Renault Kadjar (+150%), Ford Fiesta (+119%), Renault Twingo (+80%), Dacia Duster (+80%), Seat Ateca (+76%), Citroen C3 (+73%), Audi Q3 (+72%), Renault Clio (+69%) and Hyundai i30 (+53%) also making waves in the Top 50. Among recent launches (<12 months), the BMW X2 rises 18 spots on July to break into the German Top 100 for the first time at #82, the Audi Q8 is up 75 ranks on its inaugural month to #138, the BMW 8 Series is up 39 to #236 and the Peugeot Rifter lands at #233 with 117 sales.
Illustrating the artificial stock-clearing measures at play in August, the overall German market’s private sales ratio (PSR) falls to 32.6% vs. 37% in July and 39% in August 2017, with private volumes marginally up at +4.3% to 103.148 vs. +12.1% year-to-date. Logically, the vast majority of best-sellers with private buyers see their PSR drop dramatically this month vs. July: the VW Golf at 22% vs. 35.3%, the Polo at 39% vs. 54.3%, the Tiguan at 31.8% vs. 45.8%, the T-Roc at 39.6% vs. 55.9%, even Dacia nameplates, traditionally very weak with fleets, are affected with the Sandero at 74.3% vs. 93.2% and the Duster at 72.7% vs. 91.9%. The 6 most popular nameplates with private buyers come from either Volkswagen or Dacia like last month. Other notable PSR drops include the Mercedes C-Class at 32.5% vs. 40.8% last month, the Skoda Fabia at 32.5% vs. 48.3% and outside the Top 20 the Renault Captur at 26.3% vs. 39.2%. Some rare PSR increases include the Mini at 54% vs. 43.9%, Mitsubishi Space Star at 86.6% vs. 82.3%, BMW 1 Series at 45.5% vs. 38.1% and Ford Ecosport at 64.8% vs. 53.6%.
Full August 2018 Top 50 brands, Top 335 models and Top 20 private sales below.