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Russia April 2020: Late lockdown bridles market down -72.4%

First ever Russian Top 25 finish for the Kia Seltos.

As we anticipated last month due to a national lockdown implemented on April 2 and in place all through the month, the Russian new car market collapses in April at -72.4% year-on-year to just 38.922 units, the largest monthly sales decrease in Russian history, leading to a year-to-date tally down -19.1% t 415.102 sales. From just 8.672 confirmed COVID-19 cases at the time of writing the March 2020 update, figures have escalated exponentially to reach 232.243 cases as of May 12, almost instantly making Russia the 2nd most affected country in the world behind the United States (1.347.936) but above such hotspots as Spain (227.436), the UK (224.332) and Italy (219.814). This in turn means May sales figures won’t be much better. We now forecast a Russian market down -20% in 2020 to 1.4m units.

The VW Tiguan is the best-selling SUV in Russia for the first time.

Homegrown brand leader Lada (-70.9%) follows the market to 24.1% share vs. 21.4% so far in 2020, with Kia (-78.1%) holding onto the 2nd spit with 11.1% share despite a dramatic fall. Renault (-75%) edges up one spot on March to land on the third step of the podium, while Volkswagen (-67.6%) and Skoda (-58.7%) outpace the market to step up to #4 and #5 respectively. GAZ (-58.1%), Nissan (-58.9%) and Toyota (-69.7%) also contain their loss to below the market rate in the remainder of the Top 10, but Hyundai (-84.2%) and UAZ (-75%) aren’t so lucky. Further down, Changan (+52.7%) breaks into the Russian Top 20 for the first time and secures the only year-on-year gain in the entire market, let alone a double-digit one. Haval (-29.5%), Isuzu (-30.5%), Geely (-35%), Iveco (-35.9%), FAW (-43.6%), Suzuki (-52.4%) and Audi (-53.8%) post some of the best holds in market for April.

The Skoda Karoq is up to a record 14th place in April.

Model-wise, the Lada Granta (-75.8%) secures a 13th straight monthly win, but the Lada Vesta (-71.2%) is catching up, ending the month only 145 sales below. The Kia Rio (-79.6%) remains in third place while the VW Polo (-75.8%) edges up one spot on March to #4 and the VW Tiguan (-53.2%) is up 4 to break into the Russian Top 5 for the very first time, eclipsing its previous best of #7 hit from October to December 2019. The VW Tiguan therefore becomes the best-selling SUV in Russia for the first time, ending an insane 44 consecutive months of reign by the Hyundai Creta (-82.4%) which was the uninterrupted segment’s best-seller ever since its launch in August 2016.

Changan is the only carmaker in positive in Russia in April.

Worse: the Creta actually ranks #3 SUV this month below the 42 year-old Lada 4×4 (-58.9%) up to #7, its highest monthly ranking since April 2015. The Lada Largus (-64.7%) is also up to #6, its highest ranking since September 2015. Meanwhile the Renault Duster (-73.1%) returns inside the Top 10 at #9 as does the Skoda Octavia (-59.8%) at #10. The unusually low volume month brings about other surprises: the Skoda Kodiaq (-58.8%) is up 11 spots on March to lift to an all-time high 11th place (previous best #14 last January), the Kia Sportage (-71.8%) is up 8 to #12, the Skoda Karoq brilliantly breaks into the Russian Top 25 for the first time, landing directly at #14, the Toyota Prado (-57.2%) secures its first Top 25 finish since last September at #23 and the new Kia Seltos lodges its first ever stint inside the Top 25 at #24.

Previous month: Russia March 2020: Skoda (+41.7%), Toyota (+36.5%) help lift market up 4%

One year ago: Russia April 2019: Skoda (+16.2%), BMW (+13.1%), Geely (+260.2%) impress in 2nd market drop in 3 months

Full April 2020 Top 50 All-brands and Top 25 models below.

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