2021 (Q1-Q3): The Volkswagen Group was the largest carmaker in Europe with Volkswagen the best-selling car brand while Toyota outsold Peugeot.
January to September 2021: The Volkswagen Group gained market share to once again supply just over a quarter of all new cars registered in the European Union, EFTA, and the UK. The Stellantis Group registered small gains while the Renault Group lost 1.5% market share. Volkswagen was again the best-selling car brand in Europe during the first three quarters of 2021 but Toyota outsold Peugeot and even BMW moved ahead of Renault. In 2020 (Q1-Q3), the European new car market contracted by 29% to 8,567,920 cars.
During the first three quarters of 2021, new passenger registrations in the European Union (EU), EFTA, and the UK increased by 6.9% to 9,161,918 cars.
Best-Selling Car Manufacturers and Brands in Europe in 2021 (Q1-Q3)
The top-selling car manufacturing groups and largest car brands in Europe were as follows according to passenger vehicle registration data released by the ACEA:
|– Alfa Romeo||19,399||24,436||-20.6|
|Jaguar Land Rover Group||124,156||115,470||+7.5|
|– Land Rover||92,616||82,682||+12.0|
Note: include only ACEA member sales, so Tesla sales for example are not included in these statistics. 1 ACEA estimation based on total by market, 2 Including Cupra, Including Bentley, Lamborghini and Bugatti, 4 Including Abarth, 5 Including Dodge, Maserati and RAM.
Top-Selling Car Makers in Europe in 2021 (Q1-Q3)
During the first nine months of 2021, most car manufacturers and brands in Europe increased sales compared to the very weak numbers of 2020. Manufacturing issues related to a shortage in electronic parts seemed to play a more disruptive role, especially during the third quarter of 2021, than any lingering Covid restrictions and general weakness in the economy.
Shortages were reported for almost all brands and models, which led to less discounting. However, for carmakers, the risk remains that buyers may decide to keep cars longer, especially when little driving was done in much of 2020 and 2021, and to await developments in the battery-electric car market before replacing vehicles. An increase in the replacement cycle of new cars may put a longer term damper on demand.
The Volkswagen Group remained Europe’s largest car manufacturer and increased market share by almost half a percentage point to 25.9% of all new cars sold in the EU, EFTA, and UK thus far in 2021. All Volkswagen brands increased sales with Seat (up 21%) and Audi (up 12%) performing the strongest. VW brand also narrowly outperformed the general market.
Stellantis also increased market share but despite the group now consisting of 14 brands, total group sales were still half a million units behind Volkswagen. With the exception of Alfa Romeo, all brands increased sales with Jeep and Lancia sales up by a fifth. Opel and Fiat outperformed the market.
The Renault Group was the worst-performing major carmaker in Europe thus far in 2021. Renault brand sales slipped by 13.5% or a 1.3% loss in market share. Dacia sales were flat. The Renault Group had the best-performing brand in Europe (Alpine) and the worst-performer as well (Lada).
The Hyundai Group was the most-improved carmaker in Europe thus far in 2021 with sales for both Kia and Hyundai up by just less than a quarter or a combined 50,000 cars.
The BMW Group also performed well with BMW brand sales up by 11% while Mini sales were flat but positive. BMW reportedly earlier in the year had fewer electronic part issues than many other brands.
The Toyota Group increased sales in Europe during the first nine months of 2021 by a fifth or nearly 100,000 cars.
Daimler struggled with Mercedes-Benz sales down by 7%. In contrast, Smart was the second most-improved brand with sales up 71%. However, the volume of the battery-electric only brand remains low with new models only due in 2022.
The dismal performance of Ford and Nissan continued in 2021 with sales in Europe down by around a tenth. In contrast, Volvo that used to belong to Ford increased sales by a tenth.
Best-Selling Car Brands in Europe in 2021 (Q1-Q3)
The ten best-selling car models in Europe during the first nine months of 2021 were:
Top-Ten Car Brands in Europe
Volkswagen easily remained the top-selling car brand in Europe during the first nine months of 2021 with market share increasing to 11.2%. More surprising was Toyota increasing from seventh to the second best-selling car brand in Europe with sales up by 20%.
Peugeot maintained its third position while BMW moved ahead of Renault that slipped from second to fifth. Mercedes-Benz slipped two places.
Audi gained two positions while Skoda was again the eighth largest car brand in Europe. Ford slipped three places while Kia (just ahead of Hyundai) entered the top ten at the expense of Opel that slipped to twelfth despite increasing sales by a tenth.
Car Sales Statistics for Europe in 2021
- Car Sales and Market Analysis: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December, Full Year 2021
- Top-Selling Car Models: Top 25 Models 2021, Top 15 Electric Models
- Sales per European Country: Q1, Half Year, Q3, Full Year
- Sales by Brand: Q1, Half Year, Q3, Full Year
- Electric and PHEV Sales by Country: Q1, Half Year, Q3, Full Year, Top Electric Brands and Models