The best-selling model on the planet is the Toyota Corolla, whose sales are growing for the ninth consecutive year. According to Focus2move, in January-March this model sold around the world with a circulation of 312.8 thousand copies (+ 9.1%) and at this pace this year can set another world record of 1.35 million cars. Today, various modifications of Toyota Corolla are produced at 15 enterprises around the world, and for the Russian market in Turkey, and a car is sold in 150 countries. Since 2002, more than 1 million Toyota Corolla find their customers in different parts of the world every year. Since the start of production of the model in 1966, more than 40 million such machines have been sold. By the way, this result is recorded in the Guinness Book of Records as the highest sales rate for one model in the entire history of the global automotive industry. Just think about it: every fifth Toyota car sold in the entire 78-year history of the company was a Corolla!
Russia is one of the key markets in terms of demand for this model, Toyota says. Since the foundation of Toyota Motor in 2002 to the present day, more than 300 thousand of such cars have been sold in our country, and all these years the sedan has remained one of the bestsellers of the brand. Record sales of the model came in 2008, when about 64 thousand of these cars were transferred to Russian customers. But this year, for the first time in many years, Corolla fell out of the top three among Toyota models - in the first quarter its sales fell 2.7 times, to 2.9 thousand cars. The press service of Toyota Motor explain this with negative dynamics in the Russian car market as a whole, and the decline in demand for Corolla is called temporary. “The S-segment of the sedans suffered most seriously, since the purchasing power of this category of customers is very volatile, ” the Japanese company said.
The top ten global bestsellers include another Toyota model - the Camry business sedan, which is a leader in its segment. The implementation of this model in January-March amounted to 181.1 thousand cars (+ 2.8%), which ensured it eighth place in the ranking of sales. Camry is produced in factories in Japan, USA, Australia, Russia and China. By the way, cars from the enterprise in St. Petersburg, in addition to the Russian market, are also delivered to Kazakhstan and Belarus. Over 32 years of the model's existence, over 16 million copies have been sold in 80 countries of the world. It is worth noting that Russia is among the countries leading Camry sales after the USA, Canada and Australia. In 2015, this is the most popular Toyota model in the Russian market - in the I quarter its sales increased by 2%, to 7.5 thousand cars. The Japanese say that Camry corresponds to the positioning of the Toyota brand in Russia at the junction of the premium and mass segments, and local production and consumer characteristics allowed the model to become the leader of its segment in terms of government procurement and corporate sales.
And yet, unlike Toyota global sales, the basis of the model line in Russia is SUVs and crossovers - they account for more than half of the brand’s sales in our country. And the RAV4 and Land Cruiser Prado models are in the greatest demand in the SUV segment. The popularity of SUVs among Russian buyers in the company is associated with climatic features, as well as with operating conditions.
Volkswagen Golf took the second place in the world car charts this year, whose global sales in January-March increased by 21.3%, to 259 thousand units. The growth in demand is largely ensured by the entry into the market of the compact Sportsvan minivan, which accounts for about a quarter of the model’s sales, according to Focus2move. Golf, celebrating its 40th anniversary last year, has found more than 30 million owners worldwide. Today, this model is sold in more than 90 countries, and the largest markets for the pioneer of the golf class are Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and Norway. Golf is produced in Germany at factories in Wolfsburg and Zwickau, as well as Osnabrueck (convertible), in China, Mexico, and since mid-2015 - in Brazil.
It is worth noting that for the seventh consecutive year, this model remains an absolute bestseller in the European market. According to Volkswagen, Europeans love the Golf for its practicality, convenient dimensions, low fuel consumption and a “classless” appearance. In our country, the founder of the golf class is not in massive demand, occupying only the fifth place in the Volkswagen model range in terms of sales. For three months of 2015, Russians bought 900 cars of this model, which is almost 2.4 times less compared to last year. “There is a market specificity in Russia: customers give preference to sedan cars. Therefore, Volkswagen Polo sedan and Volkswagen Jetta models, which are traditional bestsellers of the brand in the Russian market, are especially popular, ”commented the Volkswagen Group Rus.
By the way, that’s why the company stopped selling Polo hatchbacks in Russia, as the sedan of this model turned out to be more popular. In general, according to the results of the first quarter of 2015, Polo ranks seventh among the world's best sellers with an indicator of 184.1 thousand cars sold (-0.6%). As for the Polo sedan, it has become the best-selling Volkswagen model since entering the Russian market and today provides half of the brand’s sales in our country. In turn, Russia is one of the world’s largest markets for the Polo sedan with a 40% share in sales - since 2010, the Kaluga Volkswagen plant has produced about 300 thousand of these cars. The start of sales of the updated model in Russia is designed to strengthen this success, the company said.
Another Volkswagen representative in the world ranking is the flagship Passat, which in January-March 2015 was sold worldwide in the amount of 156.1 thousand units (+ 1.7%), taking ninth place. And the largest markets for this sedan model are Turkey, the United Kingdom, Russia, Germany and Spain. Passat station wagon is most in demand in Germany, Britain, Sweden, Italy and France. According to Volkswagen, in Europe the car is especially in demand in the segment of corporate sales.
The Ford Focus model, which in recent years occupied an honorable second place in the world bestseller chart, in 2015 dropped to third place, skipping ahead of the Volkswagen Golf. In the first quarter, global sales of "Focus" fell by 17% and amounted to 214.3 thousand cars. The model was first introduced in 1998, and since then more than 12 million cars have been sold worldwide, including more than 7 million in Europe. Today, Ford Focus is sold in 140 countries and is manufactured at eight locations across four continents. Factories are located in Germany, USA, Russia, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Taiwan and Argentina.
In the Russian market, Focus became a champion, having won seven titles of the best-selling foreign cars since 2003. However, in the past few years, demand for it has been steadily declining, although the model remains a Ford bestseller with a share of about 30%. For three months of 2015, 1.5 thousand Russian buyers opted for Focus - 5.5 times less than a year earlier. According to the Ford Sollers press service, the decline in Focus sales is due to external economic factors and a reduction in the C-segment in recent years. The bestseller should be strengthened by the release of the new generation Focus, which will also be produced at the Ford Sollers factory in Vsevolozhsk and will be available in the third quarter of this year.
However, the new Fiesta, which has become the most affordable Ford model in Russia, can compete for the status of the brand’s sales leader. By the way, the Fiesta hatchback is the undisputed sales leader in Europe, which the company explains as the dominant position of the compact car segment. In Russia, the model is presented in two body types: hatchback and sedan. The production of new items was launched at the Ford Sollers plant in Naberezhnye Chelny, and sales will start in the third quarter. The company has high hopes for the new product, since the B-segment is showing steady growth in the Russian market. By the way, the Ford Fiesta sedan is also sold in the USA, South America, China and India.
Returning to the ranking of the world's best sellers, the Ford F-series pickup truck remains in fourth place with an indicator of 209.2 thousand cars sold (+ 2.3%). The lion's share of sales of this model falls on the markets of North and South America. For example, the F-150 remains the best-selling pickup truck in the last 37 years and the best-selling car in the US for 32 years. “Traditionally, in the US market, pickups are in demand due to their utility and combination of functionality, carrying capacity and off-road performance, ” Ford said. Production of the F-150 is established at factories in Dearborn (Michigan) and Kansas City (Missouri). But in the Russian market, the Ford F-series pickup truck has never been officially sold. In Russia, the pickup segment is very small - about 1% of all sales, and so far there are no plans to bring F-series cars to the market, Ford Sollers press service said.
The five best-selling models in the world are still closed by the Hyundai Elantra sedan, which in January-March 2015, 193 thousand motorists of the planet (-7.1%) chose. The largest markets for this model are the United States and China, with Hyundai producing special versions of the sedan for these countries. Elantra, which in some countries is sold under the name Avante, entered the market 25 years ago and became the first Hyundai model to cross the 10-million milestone in sales in the world. And the record year for the Korean automaker's best seller was 2011, when the Elantra sales reached 1.01 million copies, securing it second in the world hit parade.
In Russia, the model appeared in the fourth generation in 2006, and from 2008 to 2011 it was produced at the facilities of the Taganrog Automobile Plant, and today the fifth generation Elantra is presented on the Russian market. And although this year sales of the sedan show growth (in the first quarter - by 76.9%, up to 1.4 thousand cars), it occupies only fifth place in the lineup of Hyundai. And its undisputed leader remains the most popular foreign car in Russia - Solaris, known in other world markets as Accent. Until the end of this year, in less than 5 years from the moment of entering the market, the model will overcome the half-million sales line, which will become an absolute record for foreign cars. For three months of 2015, 24.8 thousand Russians (-2.5%) became the owners of the best-selling Hyundai. Today, Solaris' share in Russian brand sales is more than 60%. According to the Hyundai Motor CIS press service, about 80% of Solaris sales are in sedans, because Russians, especially in the budget segments, prefer this particular type of body.
The Wuling Hongguang compact minivan, which in January-March 2015 sold 189.4 thousand units (-9.8%), continues to improve its position on the world stage. Since 2010, it has been manufactured at the joint venture SAIC-GM-Wuling for the Chinese market, and since 2013 it has also been sold in India under the name Chevrolet Enjoy. It is worth noting that Focus2move only takes into account sales by Wuling Hongguang in the Chinese market, where the model is an unconditional bestseller among minivans with a share of more than 45%. As you know, the MPV segment along with SUV is one of the fastest growing in the Middle Kingdom and occupies more than 30% of all sales. According to GM forecasts, by 2020 it will double by 3 million cars, which means that Wuling Hongguang has long settled in the chart of the most popular cars on the planet.
Finally, the Honda CR-V crossover closes the Top 10 world bestsellers, whose result for the first quarter of 2015 amounted to 154 thousand cars (-8%). The largest market for the model is America, where the CR-V leads in its segment. But in Russia, sales of the Japanese crossover are small - about 660 cars in the three months of this year against 4.9 thousand cars a year earlier. According to the press service of Honda Motor Rus, at the moment, the Russian market cannot compete with the American market in terms of sales due to economic reasons, but the CR-V firmly holds the lead in Russia among all Honda models. “The decline in CR-V sales this year is explained by the fact that we are in a situation where sales of the updated model have not yet begun, and there are not so many cars in 2014, since their production stopped in 2014. Therefore, we are sure that with the advent of the updated CR-V the situation will change, ”the Japanese company explained.
Automakers' strategies are now aimed at adapting production to local needs, but general trends can be observed, says Anna Ozdelen, consultant at the Frost & Sullivan automotive market research department. For example, initially SUVs were especially popular in the USA, and over time they became popular in other markets.
In her opinion, the Russians will continue to buy subcompact cars and crossovers, in which they are similar to European consumers. “Consumer preferences in Russia have shifted towards more compact and economical cars, thereby stimulating the development of this market segment. We expect the share of B-class subcompact cars in total passenger car sales in Russia to be 44% in 2020. This growth will be driven by demand for AvtoVAZ / Renault-Nissan alliance and Hyundai-Kia models. The crossover segment is also gaining popularity in Russia, a similar trend is observed in European countries. Thanks to their high landing, these cars are well suited to winter conditions, ”says Anna Ozdelen.