30 October 2012

Greece 1992 / 2012 Comparison


We all know about the economic woes of Europe, especially countries such as Greece. So how do car sales compare with today and twenty years ago? Let's find out.

Below is a chart of sales for 1992 and 2012 (the 2012 figures are only nine months). Despite that, the trend is clear. There is the rank brands have in the Greek market, brand and sales, finally market share:



1992



2012
Rk Brand Sales Sh
Rk Brand Sales Sh
1 Nissan 18,107 9.1%
1 Opel 5,443 12.0%
2 Fiat 16,979 8.5%
2 VW 4,468 9.8%
3 Toyota 15,951 8.0%
3 Toyota 4,445 9.8%
4 Opel 12,308 6.2%
4 Citroen 3,149 6.9%
5 Citroen 11,556 5.8%
5 Fiat 2,602 5.7%
6 Ford 11,201 5.6%
6 Ford 2,505 5.5%
7 Peugeot 10,808 5.4%
7 Nissan 2,502 5.5%
8 Renault 10,158 5.1%
8 Skoda 2,155 4.7%
9 Hyundai 9,844 4.9%
9 Hyundai 2,144 4.7%
10 BMW 8,711 4.4%
10 Suzuki 1,929 4.2%
11 VW 7,486 3.8%
11 Peugeot 1,924 4.2%
12 Mazda 7,456 3.7%
12 Audi 1,476 3.2%
13 Seat 7,295 3.7%
13 Kia 1,241 2.7%
14 Alfa Romeo 6,568 3.3%
14 Seat 1,013 2.2%
15 Suzuki 6,466 3.2%
15 Volvo 988 2.2%
16 Austin/Rover 5,961 3.0%
16 BMW 964 2.1%
17 Lada 5,871 3.0%
17 Mercedes 874 1.9%
18 Skoda 5,647 2.8%
18 Renault 809 1.8%
19 Honda 5,103 2.6%
19 Chevrolet 804 1.8%
20 Mercedes 3,590 1.8%
20 Alfa Romeo 683 1.5%
21 Audi 3,006 1.5%
21 Lancia 647 1.4%
22 Lancia 2,913 1.5%
22 Honda 531 1.2%
23 Mitsubishi 1,722 0.9%
23 Mitsubishi 508 1.1%
24 Subaru 1,444 0.7%
24 MINI 450 1.0%
25 Daihatsu 1,186 0.6%
25 smart 386 0.8%
26 Zastava 1,015 0.5%
26 Dacia 283 0.6%
27 Volvo 417 0.2%
27 Mazda 219 0.5%
28 Saab 157 0.1%
28 Daihatsu 149 0.3%

Others 78


Others 244

Total 199,004


Total 45,535

Even with 2012 only being for nine months, sales have collapsed, so no surprise there. In most markets, the biggest brands have lost share over the years, but here the reverse has taken place. The difficult trading conditions seem to be the reason as this has only happened over the last three years. As far as brands go, a few have gone, others shuffled around but overall not that much change. Except for the crash in volume of course.

For Greek sales in 2011 please click here 

Data source: SEAA

27 October 2012

MG Returns To New Zealand

MG Rover cars sold well in NZ in the late 90's. Although data from those misty times is hard to find, in 1999 I believe they were the 13th best selling brand and the biggest of any Euro marque. However, once BMW stopped being the importer, things were not the same on the sales front thereafter.

Fast forward to 2012/13 and the MG brand is about to make a comeback, initially in the form of the MG6. This has the Rover 75/MG ZT platform as a basis and the engine is an improved 1.8 K series engine. What does it have for and against it?

Plus: Prices will be competitive, sourced as they are from China (yet to be announced). Based on a Euro car means it has a respectable 4 star crash rating. It has a hatchback variant, essential in NZ as Kiwis love versatile vehicles. It steers quite well apparently too. In my eyes, it is stylish and I put value on that.

Minus: It is off the pace a little for interior quality and for some it will feel a little dated inside the cabin. NZers also love automatics and for now it is only manual. The turbo charged engine isn't that sporty for those who want that.

Overall: Will sell in very small numbers until at least the auto arrives. Hopefully potential buyers will give it a go as it is definitely a step up from other Chinese offerings.

How have Chinese brands sold here? Great Wall sell an SUV and Ute (small truck) and for nine months of 2012 sold about 750 units  in a market with 75,000 total sales. I would give that a pass. Chery sell two small cars and a small SUV at bargain basement prices, yet sold only 140 vehicles in the same period. Fail. Geely bought in a few cars for evaluation but have done nothing.

My call: MG is certainly worth a look, Great Wall if you are desperate to buy new on a limited budget. Chery to be avoided, for now anyway.

25 October 2012

Ford To Close Factories, Peugeot Non?


It seems that Ford is to close it's Belgian Ford plant in Genk, which makes Mondeos and S-Max models. This will mean the loss of over 4,000 jobs. Production of the new Mondeo and S-Max will got to Valencia, Spain. Also on the chopping block is the Southampton factory, which makes the Transit van and 500 jobs will go. Most Transit vans are made in Turkey anyway, so this will be seamless. (Since it has been announced the stamping plant in Dagenham is to go too).

To summarise: The decision had to be made and it will hurt thousands of workers. It probably should have happened a few years ago but the hope was things would return to normal in Europe. It is now understood 'normal' is a long way off, or perhaps never to return. I feel for the workers and their families but it had to be done sometime.

Meanwhile over in France, PSA (Peugeot & Citroen) has been given a 7bn euros state handout (er, I mean guarantee) to help it through difficult times. However, the French government wants PSA to reduce job losses and I assume not to close a factory.

To Summarise: No one wants to see thousands of workers lose their jobs, but Peugeot has too much capacity. Surely this decision only delays the inevitable...but perhaps the economic woes in Europe are in fact only temporary. Yeah, right.

 Pic: AFP/Kristof van Accom

23 October 2012

The Rover 400 (45) 2000-2004

This is one of three articles about the Rover 400/45 model.


This car needed replacing but got a facelift instead. Not enough sales for the 400 model to go it alone, yet then owners BMW tried just that and failed. They sold up and took the replacement model designs back to Munich to rot in an office draw. Who thinks capitalism has a caring side? Anyway, it soldiered on but was losing ground to the newer competition. The last owners named the Phoenix Four didn't have the money to do a new model but pretended they did.

Below are production figures of the third and last effort by MGR. There was still something to like about the car. A sporty MG ZS model was added but as you can see, it wasn't that successful.

Year Tot 45 ZS
2000 49900 49900 -
2001 44200 38275 5925
2002 33250 26400 6850
2003 22100 15650 6450
2004 20700 14950 5750
2005 5425 3300 2125
Tot 175600 148500 27100
Avg 29250 24750 5425

Now some major markets:

Yr UK Spa Fra Italy Germ Ned Por Bel Gre
00 ? ? 4400 5300 ? 1175 ? ? 750
01 20650 ? 3100 3400 1875 800 ? ? 600
02 20925 ? 2100 1850 850 425 ? 550 350
03 15800 4375 1600 1250 650 475 700 325 125
04 11350 4525 1250 875 725 350 600 275 150
05 4175 2050 825 275 350 200 200 225 150
Tot 72900 10950 13275 12850 4450 3425 1500 1375 2125
Avg 14600 3650 2225 2150 900 575 500 350 350

I see the Spanish liked them right to the end. A modest seller in Germany though.

The 400 range was a useful seller for Rover but as you can see by the production figures from 2000, past its 'use by date'. I am sure that many who buy a used example of them will find them a car with character and a nice vehicle to drive.

To read about the 1995-99 period  please click here 

Pics: http://www.netcarshow.com/rover

21 October 2012

The Rover 400 1995-99

                 This is one of three articles about the Rover 400/45 model.



The 400 HHR model was a new model based on the Honda Domani, which was apparently sold in Europe as part of the Honda Civic range as a hatchback and estate (wagon). The new 400 model was to be separate from the 200 range. Rover wanted to have more input into the car as it had with the R8, but Honda had different ideas and the Domani was offered pretty much as it was. All I can say is that Rover had better designers when it came to aesthetics than Honda did. Rover did eventually get some input into the 4 door model and was the better for that. It seems Rover wanted a bigger car but had to take what Honda offered. Rover in fact pitched the HHR at a class larger than it was, but the strategy fooled no one. 

Being a model range in its own right, the 400 was produced in larger numbers as a Rover, but without the Honda Concerto variant any more. The production figures below testify to the solid sales of the new range. The 1999 figure does include some production form the 45 model that replaced it. 



Year Prod
1995 68,500
1996 108,900
1997 144,000
1998 145,000
1999 91,400
Total 557,800
Avg 111,600





As for sales by countries, some are listed below:

Year UK Italy France Germ Neder
1995 47,350 ? 2,450 ? 800
1996 63,850 15,600 7,100 ? 1,500
1997 61,900 17,100 7,650 ? 1,650
1998 57,300 10,200 8,300 7,900 2,500
1999 33,350 6,000 5,800 6,150 1,650
Total 263,750 48,875 31,300 14,050 8,100
Avg 52,750 12,225 6,250 7,025 1,620

 This was not the model it should have been. Rover needed something larger, especially the Hatch version, but the company was tied to what Honda offered. Overall quite successful.

To read about the 1990-94 period  please click here 

Pics: http://www.netcarshow.com/rover

19 October 2012

The Rover 400 1990-94

This is one of three articles about the Rover 400/45 model.


The first Rover 400 (R8) came out in 1990 and was a 4 door saloon (sedan) version of the 200 model. Later a 400 Tourer Estate (wagon) model came along also. The car was a joint venture between Rover and Honda, the latter got the Concerto Model from the collaboration. Being able to produce both cars off the same assembly line bought cost efficiencies for both companies.

Below are production figures for both the Rover 400 and Honda Concerto. The '% 400' column represents the percentage the Rover model got as opposed to it's Honda equivalent. The 1995 year figure is low as the R8 was replaced during the year with the new HH-R model. Combined production for the outgoing and incoming models was 91,200.  





Year 400 H Con % 400
1990 35,500 26,500 57
1991 45,100 36,000 56
1992 47,600 32,400 60
1993 48,500 18,400 72
1994 50,800 8,700 85
1995 22,700 2,200 91
Total 250,200 124,200 67
Avg 41,700 20,700 67

Now for sales of the 400 in two markets only. Often 200/400 sales were combined, so I cannot ascertain sales elsewhere. The 1995 figure includes the new 400 HH-R model too. 

Year UK France
1990 20,500 -
1991 25,400 2,500
1992 23,400 2,600
1993 33,150 3,150
1994 29,550 2,400
1995 47,350 2,450
Total 179,350 13,100
Avg 29,892 2,600

Overall, a convincing effort. Some say it was the best 400, and I am thinking so too. 

To read about the Austin Montego  click here 

11 October 2012

Land Rover Worldwide Sales By Region: 2011


Land Rover has done well of late and 2012 will be a record year with the new Evoque in full swing. The figures below show the move away from traditional markets. Russia is part of the others total in 2011, but was probably included in Europe for the 2003 figure:

Land Rover sales 2003:

Total 165163

Europe 99000 59.9 %
Nth Am 41000 24.8 %
Others 12000 7.3 %
Asia/Pac 13000 7.9 %

Compared to 2011:

Total 223602

Europe 93109 41.6 %
Nth Am 41327 18.5 %
Others 44956 20.1 %
Asia/Pac 44210 19.8 %

It is good to see a broader range of sales for Land Rover around the world. The first six months of 2012 show a swing away from North America where the 'small' isn't as popular so the new Evoque will not have the same impact as other markets. Asia is the biggest growth region  for 2012 so far.


10 October 2012

Jaguar Worldwide Sales By Region: 2011

In which regions and quantities does the Jaguar marques sell in? Only one way to find out, come to this post in this blog. Ford used to release this data years ago and now TATA do also. Starting with Ford's data of 2002, which had different ways of dividing sales by region than TATA do naturally enough. They also rounded figures also.

Total 130000

Europe 53300 41.0 %
Nth Am 65000 50.0 %
Asia/Pac 9100 7.0 %
Rest 2600 2.0 %







Compare that with 2011:

Total 50678

Europe 23462 46.3 %
Nth Am 13052 25.8 %
Asia/Pac 9203 18.2 %
Rest 4961 9.8 %




Sales numbers are down with the demise of the volume model X-Type. Russian sales figures are now in the rest figure but may have been in Europe with Ford. Asia has been a big mover with China taking off. The almost total reliance on North America and Europe has been markedly reduced which is a good thing, too many eggs in one basket comes to mind.

Another amazing fact is that Jaguar was losing money on big sales but Jaguar is now profitable despite selling a lot less cars. It just goes to show that selling more does not always mean profitability.

03 October 2012

Land Rover Worldwide Sales By Model: 2011


Land Rover sales for 2011 by model is data hard to find, in fact as with the Jaguar equivalent, perhaps only to be found here. It is thanks to the more open TATA policy. So how did LR models sell?


RR Sport 54,670 24.4%
Freeland 51,954 23.2%
Discover 44,874 20.1%
R Rover 29,626 13.2%
Evoque 22,710 10.2%
Defender 19,768 8.8%
Total 223,602


Solid sales right across the range. The Evoque only came into production late in the year, but has taken the lead in 2012, such is its desirability. The Freelander has understandably suffered as a result, but is a fine vehicle in its own right. No doubt TATA see the benefit of this sort of information reaching the public at large. Readers such as yourselves like to follow the brand, not to mention the benefits of positive publicity.

01 October 2012

Jaguar Worldwide Sales By Model: 2011

Jaguar have always viewed sales data as private information not for public consumption. Things have improved although they still do silly things like get all coy about sales in India. Maybe one day. One thing owner TATA has been is more open. Now probably for the first time, Jaguar worldwide sales by model is available to the public thanks to a more open policy by TATA and some super sleuth work by yours truly. So with out further ado:

XF 30,646 60.5%
XJ 15,128 29.9%
XK 4,894 9.7%
Tot 50,678

So what do we learn from this? The saloon (sedan) cars sell well but the sports car XK is lower than I thought it would be. It emphasises how important the new smaller F-Type sports car will be when it arrives in 2013. This is because the XK operates in the limited and quite crowded super luxury sports car segment and sales will never be that brisk in such a rarefied environment. The F-Type and a Jaguar sports car will then be reachable for so many more people.


As for the XJ, sales are going well. The XF is strong and will do better still as it increases its model variants and engine options. The big plus is the brand remains profitable in difficult times.