The Dacia Sandero III is an instant blockbuster in France. Picture largus.fr
11/02 update: Now with Top 270 All-models ranking.
The Full Year 2020 article has also been updated with Top 400 All-models data.
The French new car market manages a measured -5.8% to 126.381 units despite two less selling days and a 6pm curfew over the second half of the month. We however remain well below the levels of 2018 (156.846) and 2019 (155.079). BEV sales are down -40.9% year-on-year to 6.469 units and 5.1% share vs. 8.2% a year ago. This is a hangover of both having been pulled forward from December 2019 to January 2020 but pulled back into December 2020 instead of this month all in order to meet CO2 targets. Hybrid vehicles however soar 85.2% to 28.262 units and 22.4% share vs. 11.4% in January 2020, that includes 8.185 PHEV sales (+118.8%). Petrol sales drop -13.5% to 56.569 and 44.8% share vs. 48.7% and diesel falls -24.8% to 32.024 and 25.3% share vs. 31.7% a year ago.
Peugeot (-10.9%) decisively wrangles back the brands top spot from Renault (-21%) at 20.6% share vs. 14.9% with Citroen (-21.3%) also in difficulty in third place. The hero of the month is Dacia (+95.1%) almost doubling its sales year-on-year to climb to #4 overall with 9% share, believed to be a new record for the brand. Toyota (-6.9%) remains in 5th place above Volkswagen (+6.8%) and Ford (+10.9%) both very solid. Kia (+7.3%) and Hyundai (+15.7%) shoot up 6 spots on last month to #8 and #9 respectively, historically high rankings for the two Korean manufacturers. Further down the charts, Jeep (+86.3%), Volvo (+48.4%), Suzuki (+45.4%), Mini (+19.8%) and Skoda (+11.7%) all shine with double-digit gains in the remainder of the Top 25. Among new brands, Cupra advances to #29, MG ranks #35 and Aiways #36.
Model-wise, the Peugeot 208 II (-16.4%) is back to the pole position it held over the Full Year 2020 with 6.3% share, it is followed by the all-new Dacia Sandero III, an instant blockbuster at 5.7% share for its first full month in market. However when adding the outgoing 2nd generation, the Sandero nameplate becomes the most popular in France for the first time in history, a very significant achievement. The new generation Sandero marks a clear improvement over the old one and French buyers have definitely taken notice. It is not unrealistic to foresee a tough battle between the 208 II and Sandero III for the annual top spot in 2021. Leader in December, the Renault Clio V (+14.5%) drops to #3 this month with 5% share ahead of the Peugeot 2008 II (+55.7%), Citroen C3 (-2.5%) and Peugeot 3008 (-7.5%). The Renault Captur II (+44.4%) also shines while the Toyota Yaris (-3.5%) is the best-selling foreign model (albeit made in France) at #8 above the VW Polo (#12) and T-Roc (#17).
Full January 2021 Top 50 All-brands and Top 270 All-models below.