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UK January 2023: MG HS surprise leader, market up 14.7%

The MG HS is the best-selling vehicle in the UK in January.

131,994 new cars hit UK roads in January, a 14.7% year-on-year improvement and the 6th consecutive month of gains. Private sales go against the market at -4.3% to 59,639 units and 45.2% share vs. 54.2% a year ago and it’s fleet sales that are solely responsible for the market uptick as they soar 36.8% to 69,540 and 52.7% share vs. 44.2% a year ago. Business sales are up 45.6% to 2,815 and 2.1% share vs. 1.7% last year. Looking at fuel type, diesel is off -12.1% to 5,280 and 4% share vs. 5.2% in January 2022, petrol matches the market at +14.6% to 58,973 and an unchanged 44.7% share, MHEV climb 8.9% to 22,362 and 17% vs. 18% a year ago, BEV is up 19.8% to 17,294 and 13.1% share vs. 12.5% last year, PHEV edge up 0.7% to 9,109 and 6.9% share vs. 7.9% and HEV surge 40.6% to 18,976 and 14.4% share vs. 11.7% in January 2022.

Source: SMMT

Volkswagen (+46%) reclaims the title of best-selling carmaker in the UK with a fantastic uptick lifting it to 9.4% share vs. 8.2% over the Full Year 2022. Ford (+22.8%) and Audi (+5.4%) ensure the podium is identical to the FY2022 order. Kia (-14.2%) suffers year-on-year as it led the charts outright in January 2022 but rallies back up 10 spots on December to #4. It distances Toyota (+7.2%) and BMW (-6.8%) both also underperforming. MG (+108.8%) more than doubles its sales year-on-year and surges 10 ranks on December to #7, its first time inside the UK Top 10 since Chinese ownership and smashing its previous record of #12. Skoda (+72.2%) and Nissan (+29.5%) also beat the market while Hyundai (+10.9%) is a little more shy. Below, Polestar (+187.7%), Cupra (+130.3%), Jaguar (+55.7%), Suzuki (+53.8%), Seat (+49.5%) and Citroen (+45.3%) are among the best performers.

The MG ZS also ranks inside the UK Top 10 in January.

Model-wise, we have an enormous surprise at the top of the charts: the MG HS is the outright best-seller in the country, scoring only its second Top 10 finish after last June (#9). It is the first time an MG holds the monthly pole position in the UK, doing much better than pre-MG ownership. It is also the first time a Chinese model is #1 in the UK. The VW T-Roc (+79.6%) also impresses at #2 while the 2022 leader, the Nissan Qashqai, ranks #3. The Kia Niro (+10.7%), Vauxhall Corsa (+6.1%) and Kia Sportage (-30.3%) are back inside a Top 10 they were all out of in December. In 8th position, the MG ZS makes it two MGs in the Top 10 for the first time, delivering its second ever Top 10 finish alongside November 2021 (#6).

Previous post: UK 2022: Nissan Qashqai first Asian model #1, Tesla Model Y #2, market down to lowest in 29 years

One year ago: UK January 2022: Kia and Sportage take control on market back up 27.5%

Full January 2023 Top 42 brands and Top 10 models below.

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