Following the dip in May the Italian True Fleet Market returned to growth again in June even if the increase was rather marginal with + 0.6%. While Private customers registered almost exactly the same amount of new passenger cars as in June 2017 (− 98 units) the volume on both Dealerships/ Manufacturer (− 21.7%) and Short Term Rentals (− 27.6%) decreased significantly. Consequently the Total Market stayed below 187,000 registrations and scored a minus of 6.7%.
Looking on the performance for the first half year of 2018 the passenger car market overall was down by − 1.2%. This was mainly caused by the reluctance of private customers which have registered 4.2% less new vehicles from January to June. Special Channels registrations remained constant (+ 0.2%) but True Fleets were shining: + 7.1% pushed this segment to a new all-time record for the first six months!
Fiat was in the red with – 17.9% but stayed clearly in the lead nevertheless. But beside the manufacturer from Torino, Mercedes in 4th place was the only brand in the top 10 which kept its position from June last year. So there was a lot of movement in the ranking. Thanks to a growth of 24.6% Audi gained four positions and jumped in second place. The performance of A3, A4 and the SUV models Q2, Q3 and Q5 helped the premium brand from Ingolstadt to achieve its highest market share since August 2017. Volkswagen (+ 6.0%) ranked 3rd followed by Mercedes, Ford and Renault who all had to suffer a double-digit slide. BMW in 7th place was in good shape with a surplus of + 16.2%. Jeep (8th, + 71.8%) and Toyota (9th, + 70.9%) scored fantastic results in June and both improved by four positions in the ranking. For Jeep the new generation Compass continues to be the chief protagonist for the positive outcome. Within Toyota there were two main pillars for success with the C-HR and the Yaris. The latter even scoring its highest monthly volume in True Fleets in Italy so far. Peugeot completed the top-10 ranking this month but only 35 registrations ahead of Alfa Romeo.
Vehicle segments performance
As expected the growth in True Fleets in June was again primarily fuelled by SUVs (+ 32.3%) with no less than six models in the top 7. Their share within the fleet customers reached 44.7% which means not only another record but also a higher portion than the sum of the vehicle segments Mini, Small, Compact, Middle-Class and Luxury combined! And in fact the group of SUV has become so large that it makes sense to run a short analysis by the different sizes of models. With 45.1% the Compact SUVs are dominating in the first six months of 2018 followed by Small (25.5%), Medium (21.8%) and Large (7.5%). And while the leader of the Large SUV is the Land Rover Range Rover Velar the other three classes are in the hand of the FCA group with Fiat 500X, Jeep Compass and Alfa Romeo Stelvio claiming the podium positions in their respective model size.
The SUV product offer has become overwhelming. In the first half year we could see no less than 73 different models with at least a hundred registrations on fleet customers. Despite this variety there is one thing they have in common: the continuous popularity of Diesel. Even if the shares have slightly decreased over the last 12 months we still see values of 86.2% (SUV Small) and 90.9% (SUV Compact).