Chart Of The Day: Europe's C-Segment In 2013, And Why Peugeot Isn't Coming Back To America

Derek Kreindler
by Derek Kreindler

Today’s chart of the day comes courtesy of JATO Dynamics and Automotive News Europe, showing last year’s C segment car sales in Europe (click to enlarge).

While ANE reported the data in the context of the Volkswagen Golf’s (undeniable) dominance of the C-segment, the remaining data provides a lot of insight into the global automotive landscape.

  • Per JATO, Ford sold about 223,000 units of the Focus in Europe last year – but in the United States alone, they sold 234,570. What does that say about the strength and size of the American market (where compacts are a big segment, but dwarfed by mid-size sedans, pickup trucks and CUVs), or the relative smallness of Europe’s market, which has substantially more brands and nameplates vying for a smaller piece of the pie
  • Vauxhall/Opel may be struggling to stay afloat, but the Astra is a perpetually strong seller for the brand, while the Chevrolet Cruze doesn’t even rank in the top 10. Then again, the different Golf variants (SEAT Leon, Skoda Octavia) are absent too.
  • Both Toyota and Honda have a lower profile in Europe than in America, but the Auris seems to have resonated strongly with European consumers. Not only is it beating the Peugeot 308 and Citroen C4, but also the Hyundai i30 (Elantra GT) and Kia Cee’d, which have been giving VAG a fright in key markets like the Czech Republic, as well as winning critical acclaim from the European motoring press. The Civic languishes in 10th place, selling about 50,000 units. You can bet that Nissan is looking to pick it off as it prepares to ramp up its own C-segment entrant.
  • Combined sales of the PSA twins (Peugeot 308 and Citroen C4) add up to about 178,000 units, while Hyundai and Kia’s combined sales equal about 185,000 units. Would you have expected this to happen a decade ago? If anything, it shows why the blogosphere talk of PSA returning to America is bunk (nevermind that it was merely wish fulfillment based on comments by CEO Carlos Tavares taken out of context). PSA doesn’t even have their house in order at home. They aren’t going to spend billions to return to a market that likes to buy the kind of products they don’t build.
  • Back to the Auris. It’s coming here as a Scion. And it’s supposed to be a great driving car. On the other hand, there won’t be a Toyota-badged car to replace the Matrix.
    Derek Kreindler
    Derek Kreindler

    More by Derek Kreindler

    Join the conversation
    2 of 71 comments
    • NN NN on Apr 29, 2014

      would be interesting to see Citroen come over with the Cactus and try the 2 year cellphone style plan in major cities. Might work in the big cities.

    • Sector 5 Sector 5 on Apr 29, 2014

      Peugeot = French has been. Politically they don't know what to do with it - seriously. Nobody wants to be the Govt of demise or the sell out. So batten down those hatches & hope for the best.

    • Lou_BC As others have pointed out, some "in car" apps aren't good or you pay for upgrades. My truck did not come with navigation. It was an expensive option. There's a lame GM maps app that you need to subscribe to "in-car" data. The map does not give you navigation other than to tell you where restaurants and gas stations are located. I'd want Android auto since I already pay for the phone.
    • Theflyersfan Given so many standard nav systems aren't the best and updating could mean a dealer trip, and I stream all music, Android Auto is an absolute must. Wireless isn't necessary and some wireless chargers overheat the phone. And there are some hacks that let YouTube stream on the screen - excellent for listening to concerts.
    • Jeff I going to guess by the condition of the body and interior that there is little to no rust on the frame. Appears to be a very well maintained car.
    • MaintenanceCosts Would not buy a new daily car without it.
    • Namesakeone I hate the thought, and I hope I'm wrong. Mazda. They're a small fish in a really big pond, and they made their reputation on sports cars--a market segment that nobody seems to want to buy new anymore.