2023 (Full Year) Britain: Best-Selling Car Models in the UK

In full-year 2023, the Ford Puma and Nissan Qashqai were the top-selling car models in Britain while the Tesla Model Y was again the UK’s favorite battery-electric car.

In full-year 2023, the Ford Puma and Nissan Qashqai were the top-selling car models in Britain while the Tesla Model Y was again the UK's favorite battery-electric car.
Ford Puma ST © Ford UK

2023 (January to December): For the first time ever, the Ford Puma was the top-selling car model in Britain in a full calendar year. It replaced the Nissan Qasqai, which slipped to second to place two fairly similar small SUVs or crossovers at the top of the sales charts in the UK. Britain’s favorite small passenger car was the Vauxhall Corsa, which finished the year third overall. The Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Golf slipped out of the top ten for the first time in years while the Audi A3, Nissan Juke, and Vauxhall Mokka re-entered the top rankings.

In 2023, the new car market in Britain expanded by 17.9% to 1,903,054 newly registered passenger vehicles. Volkswagen was the top-selling brand in the UK. The Ford Puma was the favorite car model of the British in 2023 and the Tesla Model Y was the best-selling battery-electric car in the UK.

Latest British Car Sales Data: 2023: Market Overview, Brands, Models, Electric; 2022-2008.

Top Ten Best-Selling Car Models in Britain in 2023 (Full Year)

The ten best-selling car models in the UK in the full calendar year 2023 according to the SMMT were as follows:

Brand & ModelCars Sold 2023Cars Sold 2022Cars Sold 2021
1Ford Puma49,59135,08828,697
2Nissan Qashqai43,32142,70429,922
3Vauxhall Corsa40,81635,91040,914
4Kia Sportage36,13529,65527,611
5Tesla Model Y35,89935,551NA
6Hyundai Tucson34,46927,839NA
7Mini33,38532,38731,792
8Nissan Juke31,745
9Audi A330,159
10Vauxhall Mokka29,984
Source: SMMT

Britain’s Favorite Car Models in 2023

After only a year, it was again a Ford car model that led the sales charts in Britain but in 2023 it was not the usual Ford Fiesta, of which production has stopped, but rather the Ford Puma. The Puma is a small SUV / crossover and sold nearly 50,000 cars in the UK in 2023. The Puma moved up the rankings from fourth a year ago.

Despite increasing sales volumes, both the Nissan Qashqai and Vauxhall Corsa slipped one ranking position each. The Corsa was the favorite small car in Britain since 2021.

The next three positions were also for small SUVs / crossovers. The Kia Sportage moved up two rank positions while the Tesla Model Y slipped two but remained the best-selling electric car model in Britain in 2023. The Hyundai Tucson moved up one rank position.

The Mini slipped two rank positions with sales volume hardly changed over the last four years.

The last three positions are for cars that have been off the top-ten list of best-selling car models in Britain for several years. The Nissan Juke entered the top-ten list for the first time since 2014, the Audi A3 since 2016, and the Vauxhall Mokka since 2015.

The three cars dropping off the list were the VW Golf, Ford Fiesta, and Ford Kuga. The Fiesta was Britain’s best-selling car model from 2009 to 2020 but production came to an end with the car not being replaced with a similar small hatchback. The Golf was on the top ten list in Britain since at least 2005 including the second best-selling model in 2017, 2018, and 2019.

In 2023, the new car market in Britain expanded by 17.9% to 1,903,054 newly registered passenger vehicles. Volkswagen was the top-selling brand in the UK. The Ford Puma was the favorite car model of the British in 2023 and the Tesla Model Y was the best-selling battery-electric car in the UK.

Latest British Car Sales Data: 2023: Market Overview, Brands, Models, Electric; 2022-2008.