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UK January 2022: Kia and Sportage take control in market back up 27.5%

Kia is the best-selling carmaker in the UK in January and the Sportage is the best-selling model.

The UK new car market bounces back up 27.5% year-on-year in January to 115,087 sales on particularly low (-39.5%) year-ago volumes impacted by lockdowns. Private sales shoot up 64.1% year-on-year to 62,300 and 54.1% share vs 42.1% a year ago, fleet sales are stable (-0.4%) to 50,817 units and 44.2% share vs. 56.5% and business sales gain 52.7% to 1,970 and 1.7% share vs. 1.4%. Diesel is off -45.8% to 6,008 and 5.2% share vs. 12.3% a year ago, petrol is up 14.6% to 51,468 and 44.7% vs. 49.8% but electrified vehicles drive the market growth again this month. Mild hybrid (MHEV) is up 37.1% to 20,639 and 18% share vs. 16.7%, BEV shoots up 130.6% to 14,433 ad 12.5% share vs. 6.9% a year ago, PHEV is up 47.3% to 9,047 and 7.9% share vs. 6.8% and HEV up 98.1% to 13,492 and 11.7% share vs. 7.5% in January 2021.

Source: SMMT

There’s a mini revolution in the brands ranking: Kia (+67.5%) speeds up 14 spots on December to take the overall lead with 9.1% share, after ranking #2 last September. This is compared to 2.7% share in December and 5.5% over the Full Year 2021. And it’s not a tight win either, Kia being by far the only manufacturer managing five-figure sales this month. This also means the top seller in the UK is an Asian brand for only the second time in history after last September when that honour went to Toyota. Audi (+30.1%) is up one spot on December to a brilliant 2nd place with 7.4% share while last year’s leader Volkswagen (+12.5%) is down to #3. BMW (+19.7%) remains in 4th position above Toyota (+77.9%) up two to #5. Ford (-14.4%) is still struggling but manages to get back up four ranks on last month to #6, distancing Vauxhall (+17.2%) and Mercedes (-3.7%) both underperforming. In contrast, Hyundai (+81.5%) scores the largest gain in the Top 10 at #9. Further down, notice MG (+159.1%) up to a record #12 in between Peugeot and Mini (+106.6%), Honda (+162.4%), Mazda (+174.6%), Dacia (+122.2%) and Fiat (+222.3%).

The January models ranking is also all shaken up: for the first time in UK history the Kia Sportage (+15.8%) is the best-selling vehicle outright, breaking its previous record of #2 in January 2021. It distances the Ford Puma (+48.2%) and another Kia: the Niro (+36.2%) up to a record third place, with its previous best #6 in February and October 2021. This means the UK podium is 100% SUV for the first time. The Mini is down two spots on December to #4 while last year’s leader the Vauxhall Corsa (-25.8%) also drops two ranks to #5. Below the Hyundai Tucson and Vauxhall Mokka repeating at #7, the Ford Focus (+8.1%) makes a now rare appearance in the Top 10 at #8. At #9, the VW T-Roc secures a 4th ever UK Top 10 finish after August 2019 (#9), February 2021 (#7) and November 2021 (#9). As for the Toyota Corolla at #10, this is its second Top 10 appearance after last August (#10 also). We have 6 SUVs in the UK Top 10 this month.

Previous post: UK Full Year 2021: VW #1, overtakes Ford for the first time, Vauxhall Corsa and Tesla Model 3 top market up 1%

One year ago: UK January 2021: Lockdown sends market down -39.5% to lowest since 1970, Kia Sportage up to #2

Full January 2022 Top 42 All-brands and Top 10 models below.

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