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Germany August 2020: BMW (+15.2%) stands out, Mercedes GLC hits record #4, market halted -20%

The 1 Series soars 142.9% in August, helping lift BMW up 15.2%. Picture

10/09 update: Now with Top 310 All Private Sales models.

Illustrating the general situation in Europe over the month, the German new car market cranks the reverse gear in August, sinking -20% year-on-year to 251.044 units which leads to a year-to-date tally down -28.8% to 1.776.604. Once again private sales resist much better at -7% year-on-year to 95.415 and 38% share vs. 32.7% a year ago, business fleets drop -12.4% to 70.640 and 28.1% share vs. 25.7% in August 2019, dealer and factory sales sink -38% to 59.693 and 23.8% share vs. 30.7% and leases + rentals drop -26.2% to 24.933 and 9.9% share vs. 10.8% a year ago. As a result of this August freefall, we have adjusted our 2020 Germany Forecast down from 2.87 million (-20%) to 2.82 million sales (-22%), which would remain the lowest annual German volume in 35 years: since 1985 (2.38m).

Unlike in most European countries we have covered so far, brand leader Volkswagen (-16.9%) outpaces its home market in August but sees its share end the month below its YTD level at 17.5% vs. 18.4%. Mercedes (-3.7%) scores a splendid resistance and climbs to 11.1% share, its fourth consecutive month above the symbolic 10% mark and its highest since October 2019 (11.8%). But it’s third-ranked BMW (+15.2%) that lodges by far the best performance in the German market this month, scoring the only year-on-year uptick in the Top 10 and the largest in the Top 20. Ford (-26.1%) and Audi (-35%) close the Top 5 in dreadful fashion, while Renault (-12.7%) and Hyundai (-15.5%) also outpace the market in the remainder of the Top 10.

The Mercedes GLC hits an all-time record 4th place overall in Germany.

Opel (-46.8%) sinks to new lows: a worst-ever ranking (#10) meaning it is outsold by Renault for only the 2nd time in history after last month, by Hyundai for the 2nd time also after December 2019 and by Seat for the third time after August 2019 and last month, yet its share is slightly higher than last month at 3.8%. Nissan (+13.5%), Toyota (+8.9%), Mini (+3.3%), Fiat (+1%) and Kia (+0.5%) are the additional gainers inside the Top 20 while further down the ladder, Tesla (+453.7%), Jeep (+40.3%), Iveco (+21.3%), Lotus (+16%), DS (+11.9%), Lada (+3.4%) and Honda (+1.4%) also advance. Newcomer Polestar smashes into the German Top 40 for the first time, lifting 12 spots on July to #35 with 239 sales of the new Polestar 2 while Cupra makes its official entrance at #47.

VW Passat sales soar 68.6% year-on-year.

In the models ranking, as the new 8th generation finally kicks into gear the VW Golf (+7.6%) manages a second consecutive months of year-on-year gains after stopping a series of 6 straight double-digit drops in July. The VW Passat (+68.6%) is bolstered by its facelift up 8 spots on July to #2 while the T-Roc (-27.2%) climbs back onto the German podium for only the second time ever after August 2019 when it ranked #3 also. The Mercedes GLC (+92.8%) secures the largest year-on-year gain in the Top 20 and surges 11 ranks on last month to #4 overall, a new ranking record eclipsing its previous best of #6 hit in August 2017 and October 2019. The Opel Corsa (-6.4%) rallies back up 8 spots to close the Top 5 but remains down on year-ago volumes.

The Tesla Model 3 hits a record 21st place in August.

An additional three nameplates manage double-digit gains in the remainder of the Top 10: the Skoda Octavia (+16.9%) is down 3 spots on a record-breaking third place last month, the Mercedes A-Class (+32%) is down one to #7 and the Fiat Ducato (+76.6%) continues on its delayed run of motorhome sales as the summer winds down. The Mini line-up (+3.3%) also shines at #10 bur the VW Tiguan (-38.8%) takes a painful hit, down 7 spots on July to #9. Outside the Top 10, the BMW 3 Series (+58.4%) surges year-on-year but drops 6 on last month to #13, the Hyundai Kona (+52.9%) climbs a further 9 ranks to reach a new record 15th place, the Tesla Model 3 (+693.3%) also breaks its ranking record at #21.

The Cupra Formentor has landed in Germany.

The Renault Zoe (+184.4%), BMW 1 Series (+142.9%), VW Caddy (+39.7%), Kia Ceed (+38.3%), Renault Clio (+37.3%), Mercedes CLA (+34.7%), BMW 5 Series (+20.6%) and Renault Twingo (+17%) also sport splendid gains in the remainder of the Top 50. The Ford Puma advances 5 spots on July to break into the German Top 40 for the first time at #37, easily topping recent launches above the VW ID.3 up 75 ranks on its inaugural month to #140 and 388 sales, the Polestar 2 (#170), Porsche Taycan (#173), Ford Explorer (#187) and Land Rover Defender (#193). We welcome the Mazda MX-30 at #251 with 32 sales, the Aston Martin DBX at #285 with 8 units and the Cupra Formentor at #292 with 5 deliveries.

Previous month: Germany July 2020: Market fall thaws to -5.4%, Skoda and Octavia break records, VW ID.3 lands

One year ago: Germany August 2019: Skoda, Seat, Dacia break records, Duster inside Top 10, T-Roc leads private sales

Full August 2020 Top 50 All-brands, Top 330 All-models and Top 310 All Private Sales models below.

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