The Ford Fiesta is formally Britain’s best-selling automobile for the 10th successive yr. In response to the most recent complete knowledge type the Society of Motor Producers and Merchants (SMMT), 2018 noticed some 95,892 Fiesta fashions registered, a way forward of the following finest sellers, the Volkswagen Golf (64,829), Vauxhall Corsa (52,915), Nissan Qashqai (50,546) and stablemate Ford Focus (50,492).
In a market that was down about 7 per cent general, gross sales of the Fiesta and Focus helped maintain the Ford model within the place of market chief, with a couple of in 10 new vehicles registered having a blue oval badge on them – 11.three per cent.
That market share is down marginally on 2017, and a way under the historic highs of over 30 per cent within the 1970s and 1980s.
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Taking the automotive teams, combining all of VW’s manufacturers (together with Seat, Skoda and Audi) leaves the Volkswagen Group in pole place – at about 20.5 per cent, or approaching double Ford’s share.
Vauxhall, now a part of Peugeot group (PSA) is on 7.7 per cent and PSA’s 4 manufacturers (together with Citroen and DS) totalled 13.three per cent of latest automobile registrations. The “dieselgate” scandal seems to have performed little lasting harm to VW’s wider fortunes.
Mitsubishi (up 31.5 per cent), Abarth (27 per cent), Subaru (17.2 per cent), Seat (12 per cent) and Volvo (9 per cent) had been the large gainers among the many mainstream manufacturers, reflecting a mixture of new, engaging fashions arriving of their sellers’ showrooms, such because the Volvo XC40, Seat Ateca and Arona, and varied new Mitsubishi SUVs.
Notable market losers embrace Infiniti (down 78.7 per cent to 750 models), DS (down 44.1 per cent), Nissan (-32.1 per cent) and Good (-26 per cent).
Infiniti, the premium model of Nissan, has radically slimmed down its mannequin vary, with solely three merchandise being supplied to UK clients – the Q30 and QX30, and Q50.
An distinctive gross sales efficiency from the brand new compact Mercedes-Benz A-Class helped transfer the market share of what was once a distinct segment, premium participant to fourth tempo general within the UK market – at 7.1 per cent.
The A-Class was the eighth best-selling mannequin general in 2018, and ranked in fourth place in December, forward of the Corsa and simply behind Mini.
Among the many “British” marques, Bentley recorded a marginal slip in gross sales from 1,753 to 1,542, and an enchancment of 9 per cent in Jaguar gross sales partially offset a 5.7 per cent drop lack of Land Rover’s (a lot bigger) registrations.
Land Rover is one among numerous manufacturers which have been affected by the latest controversies about diesel-powered automobiles.
Some 2,367,000 new vehicles had been registered in 2018, down greater than 173,000 on the earlier yr, with depressed enterprise and shopper confidence and Brexit uncertainties including to produce shortages and uncertainties about the way forward for diesel.
The SMMT forecast an extra 2 per cent drop in demand this yr, that’s if there isn’t a “laborious Brexit”.