True Fleet for France has once again hit double-digit growth with its best rate in 2017 so far. In fact the whole French market was buoyant in August with the Total market finishing just a little shy of 107,500 registrations. The Private market had its best August since 2009 up by 4.8% over last year’s numbers, Special Channels was also up by 12.7% with 79.3% of their volume coming through the dealership/manufacturer channel with seasonality influencing the Short Term Rental figures. True Fleet though had a truly exceptional month and secured its best August since Dataforce recordings began in 2003 with a growth of 17.1%.
Solid growth figures from the three main home-grown manufacturers really helped the market achieve the successful month that August was. The podium spots were filled by Peugeot in the #1 position with a 30.3% growth (2nd highest inside the Top 10) followed by Renault on 2nd with a + 27.8% and Citroen taking the bronze with a + 29.0%.
Unfortunately none of the German brands inside the Top 10 could manage a positive growth though all retained their positions from last year with VW in 4th, Mercedes in 5th, BMW in 6th and Audi in 7th. Nissan in 8th took the biggest growth of the Top 10 with 36.8% thanks in no small part to the X-Trail which delivered a 423.0% lift over its August 2016 numbers. Toyota also finished positive with 23.6% allowing it to steal a place and move into 9th, while Ford in 10th rounded out the places helped by good performances from the Kuga and Ecosport.
Alternative Fuels – Hybrids
It comes as no surprise that the alternative fuel segments of hybrid and electric continue to grow, albeit with a slight blip for hybrid in 2016 caused by a significant reduction to the bonus-malus for this fuel type. Within the Hybrid segment Toyota retains the top spot by a healthy margin from its competitors but it is here in the competitor ranks that a change can be seen. Mercedes has wrestled the #2 spot from Lexus for the 2nd time now in 2017 thanks to the continuing success of the GLC-e Plug-In Hybrid and at its current rate will continue to retain that crown.
Diving deeper into the SUV Hybrid segment we can see that the Mercedes is not the only premium brand with models in market. Audi, BMW, Lexus, Land Rover, Porsche and Volvo all have entrants in this segment and most with a longer hybrid heritage than the Mercedes and in some cases a wider range of models possibly allowing for a more established customer base. However Mercedes has managed with the GLC to push past the other brands and secure that 2nd spot, at least for the time being.