Following a massive drop of 20.5% (“thanks” to WLTP) the passenger car market in UK was down by “only” 2.9% in October and scored 153,600 new registrations.
With – 6.1% the True Fleet channel was hit harder than private customers which were only 1.0% behind the volume of October 2017. With only 9 units (!) less than in last year’s October, Special Channels were extraordinary stable. But only on the first look because the registrations on Dealerships/Manufacturers decreased by more than 1,200 cars and this was almost completely compensated by the rise in registrations of Short-Term Rentals, where we could see several brands with triple-digit growth rates.
Within the top 10 fleet brands there was quite a lot of action and so only one brand kept its position in the ranking (Kia on rank number 9). Following a tough September Volkswagen was able to take the crown for True Fleet again in October. But it was a close race as Volkswagen, Ford and Mercedes were only separated by 86 registrations! With a + 31.5% BMW in fourth place achieved the biggest percentage growth within the top 10. The positive result was mainly fuelled by the 5 Series (especially the Plug-In version 530e) and the 2 Series Gran Tourer, which scored its best market share in the British fleet market up to now.
Toyota in 6th just behind Vauxhall (Opel) achieved a + 21.1% and Peugeot followed in 8th behind Nissan registered a solid + 27.9% in October. For both brands the upswing was predominantly generated by SUV models (C-HR, RAV4 and 2008, 3008 and 5008 respectively). Hyundai took the last spot of the top 10 and a bit further down the ranking Volvo showed a remarkable performance. The Swedish car manufacturer achieved its highest market share for four years jumping from rank number 17 into 14th place with an impressive + 62.0%. Both the XC60 and the S90 more than doubled their registrations, while the all-new XC40 also contributed significantly.
Vehicle segment performance
The rise of SUVs is of course not a news anymore. Nevertheless, it is amazing to see how strong the demand is continuing to develop. And this is completely independent from the size of models. This becomes obvious by looking on the market shares of the different SUV subsegments. Small, Compact and Medium SUVs all achieved new all-time records in October and with 2.52% the group of Large SUVs was very, very close to achieving the same. But this award still goes to March 2017 with 2.54%.
Let’s have a closer look at these segments. The two top-sellers within SUV Small, Nissan Juke and Vauxhall Mokka, were both in the red but all other models in the top 10 raised their volumes or were new entries like the T-Roc from Volkswagen (already 3rd in October) or the Seat Arona (10th). The Volkswagen Tiguan was clearly leading the Compact SUV class and more than doubled its registrations over October 2017. The same holds true for the Mercedes GLA, ranking third behind the Nissan Qashqai while the Grandland X from Vauxhall is currently the most successful new entry both in the current month and year-to-date. The Medium SUV segment was led by a Japanese model: the Mitsubishi Outlander and its preferred powertrain is clearly the PHEV. Eight out of ten company car drivers opted for the Plug‑In version. Mercedes GLC (2nd, + 82.0%) and Volvo XC60 (3rd, + 103.4%) had a massive jump but the Peugeot 5008 even had a five-digit growth rate and gained no less than 19 positions pushing the first domestic model, the Land Rover Discovery Sport aside.