By on November 30, 2011

Over the last few weeks we took you on a trip to the USA in 1975South KoreaSweden and Canada. We are back in Europe this week to stop in the country of Dracula, Romania.

If the prospect of visiting the eerie forest of Romania is a little too scary for you, think of it as another Twilight movie. Scarier still? Thought so. This is why I’ve prepared 159 additional countries for you to visit in my blog, so if Romania is not your cup of blood, click away!

Now. For those thick-skinned of you who are on for the trip. Romania is the country of Dacia. Dacias everywhere… But who is Dacia I hear some of you ask…

Well. Dacia is the main Romanian car manufacturer (with Aro) and always had close links with French manufacturer Renault, and in 1999 Renault bought Dacia, to make it their low-cost center.

The first completely new model to be launched by Dacia was the 5,000 euros ($6,700) car, which ended up being more like the 6,500 euros ($8,700) car – but still a bargain for its size – aka the Dacia Logan. What happened after the launch is interesting. First, it shot straight to the top of the ranking in Romania, grabbing no less than 33 percent of the market in September 2004 for its first month, and improving to a high of 44 percent in May 2006. Yes that’s 44 percent for a single model.

You can try searching, no other model dominates the sales that much in any other country in the world. Go on, search the 160 countries in my blog

Then, the success was such that Renault had to rethink its original decision to not make the model available in Western Europe. ‘Grey ‘ imports reportedly started occurring and Renault finally launched the Dacia Logan in France among other countries in 2005 within Renault dealerships but in a separate area, without TV advertising, and to great success: it reached #15 in France in November that year, and went on to peak at #7 in December 2007.

Today, the Dacia Logan has managed 86 consecutive months atop the Romanian ranking and still commands close to 27 percent of the market 7 years after its original launch. Impressive.

But Dacia doesn’t just manufacture the Logan. In 2008 a hatchback based on the Logan was launched: the Dacia Sandero. Interestingly, the Sandero has not been met with great success in its native country: it struggles to get into the Top 10 but ranked #7 in October with 223 sales sales and 2.8 percent share. It is #10 year-to-date.

Conversely, the Sandero has been a clear success in France. It reached an outstanding 2nd place in March 2010, ahead of all Renault models. It also is doing really well in Brazil, where it is sold as the Renault Sandero and regularly ranking within the Top 10 in a very vigorous market.

Next in 2010, Dacia launched the Duster, a crossover SUV. The Duster does really well in Romania, ranking on the podium for most of 2011 and #3 at 3.9 percent market share in October. In France too: The Dacia Duster even ranked #2 there for one week in April this year. And in Brazil where it just launched with a Renault badge, it is already knocking at the Top 20’s door.

The next model to be launched by Dacia is the MPV Lodgy which will be presented at the Geneva Motorshow next March. It will be interesting to see where it fits in the Dacia range success-wise.

Now of course there are not just Dacias sold in Romania. Other very successful models include the Skoda Octavia, very strong at #2 with 6.6 percent share in October…

The Renault Symbol, a Clio sedan only sold in Eastern Europe, at #4… Strangely (or not) it kind of looks more like a Dacia Sandero sedan…

…and the new generation Toyota Yaris at #5.

You can see the Full Top 30 best-selling models in Romania in October 2011 here:

Pos Model Oct %
1 Dacia Logan 2,109 26.9%
2 Skoda Octavia 436 5.6%
3 Dacia Duster 304 3.9%
4 Renault Symbol 285 3.6%
5 Toyota Yaris 233 3.0%
6 Ford Focus 226 2.9%
7 Dacia Sandero 223 2.8%
8 VW Golf 213 2.7%
9 VW Polo 197 2.5%
10 VW Jetta 178 2.3%
11 Skoda Fabia 156 2.0%
12 Renault Fluence 155 2.0%
13 Opel Astra 145 1.9%
14 VW Passat/CC 135 1.7%
15 Opel Corsa 112 1.4%
16 Chevrolet Aveo 100 1.3%
17 Ford Fiesta 93 1.2%
18 Toyota Auris 73 0.9%
19 Hyundai i20 72 0.9%
20 Hyundai ix35 69 0.9%
21 Renault Megane 67 0.9%
22 Renault Clio 65 0.8%
23 Nissan Juke 61 0.8%
24 Chevrolet Cruze 58 0.7%
25 Skoda Superb 57 0.7%
26 Seat Ibiza 54 0.7%
27 Chevrolet Spark 53 0.7%
28 Nissan Qashqai 52 0.7%
29 Peugeot 206+ 51 0.7%
30 Suzuki SX4 47 0.6%

Now for the golden nugget: to be a perfect expert in Romanian car sales you need to know that Dacia actually is the ancient name for the region constitutes much of present-day Romania.

There. You. Are. An expert.

You can check out the Top 50 best-selling models in Romania in October and year-to-date 2011 here

There is also Historical Data for Romania up to 1969 here.

Matt Gasnier, based in Sydney, Australia, runs a blog named Best Selling Cars, dedicated to counting cars all over the world.


Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

8 Comments on “Best Selling Cars Around The Globe: Dacia King At Home In Romania...”

  • avatar

    Ad vid is as obtuse as the Trofero one in the following piece!

    • 0 avatar

      +1 on the odd video. Makes you wonder about the though process of some advertising executives. “We need helicopters! And hot chicks! WIN!”

      As for the golden nugget:
      “Dacia actually is the ancient name for the region constitutes much of present-day Romania…”
      Some sad individuals like myself already knew that (I played Rome: Total War).

    • 0 avatar

      I’d risk the bet that Bertel in his VW days would have approved the chicks, but the choppers? I’d bet not.

      Btw, I miss your bobble head cat with headphones avatar.

  • avatar

    Dacia was started during the cold war as a push toward industrialization in Romania and had long ties to Renault much like other Eastern European companies had access to designs from FIAT. I’d guess it was a result of Ceausescu trying to keep a modicum of independence from Moscow and taking advantage of interwar ties between Romania and France, who spent some time trying to make Romania a potential second front threat for any future conflict with Germany.

    Don’t feel bad about knowing where the term Dacia comes from; why be ashamed about knowing things?

  • avatar

    Looks like a very small market. But owning 27% with one model and number 2 being 5% and change, it is a bunch of also rans here.

  • avatar

    all kind of good stuff comig from Romania lately, such as the hot model in the new Fiat 500 Abarth ad

  • avatar

    The Sandero just reminds me of the Top Gear episode where Clarkson bought Captain Slow one. Then it was promptly destroyed by a semi.

  • avatar


Read all comments

Recent Comments

  • mason: “Mitch McConnell, Senior Senator from Kentucky, has already said that if the Republicans get a majority...
  • Art Vandelay: For the record, I would give up a good chunk of range to drive an electric version of that Olds if they...
  • Art Vandelay: Club Car. No reason other than the course I play regularly just got Yamahas to replace their fleet.
  • Art Vandelay: TREMEC T5.. honorable mention to the Doug Nash 7 Speed, but that’s a pretty short one. In all...
  • dal20402: I’m sad to see this sort of conspiracy bull$hit on this site. And it’s not even coherent. If...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Corey Lewis
  • Jo Borras
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber