2013 (First Half) France: Best-Selling Car Manufacturers and Models

The French car market was weak during the first half of 2013 with Renault, Peugeot and Citroen the top-selling brands. The Renault Clio is France’s favorite car model.

Renault Captur at the Geneva Auto Salon 2013

From January to June 2013, new passenger vehicle registrations in France declined by 11.3% to below the million car mark. PSA remained the strongest car-manufacturing group while Renault, Peugeot, Citroen and Volkswagen were the best-selling car brands in France during the first half of 2013. The Renault Clio was France’s favorite car model during the first six months of 2013.

The French Car Market in 2013 (First Half Year)

The new car market in France during the first six months of 2013 contracted by 11.3% to 930,320 new passenger vehicle registrations. This was well below the psychological million car mark while the market share of French car manufacturing groups fell to below half a million vehicles. French car producers only marginally underperformed the overall market.

If the figures are adjusted for two fewer working days during the first half of 2013 compared to 2012, the French new car market declined by 9.9%

Best-Selling Car Makes in France in 2013 (Half Year)

The top-selling passenger vehicle manufacturing groups and brands in France during the first six months of 2013 according to car sales statistics released by the CCFA were:

  January to June (All half-year figures) 
  201320122011% Share% Change
Total Market 930,3201,048,2981,225,084100.0-11.3
French 495,707561,885703,71553.3-11.8
Imported 434,613488,433521,36946.7-10.7
PSA 275,191320,756409,35729.6-14.3
Peugeot 150,997170,272220,92816.2-11.4
Citroen 124,194150,484188,42913.4-17.5
RENAULT Group 220,130239,470294,31223.7-8.1
Renault 175,207198,287246,57818.8-11.6
Dacia 44,92341,18347,7344.89.1
VW Group 125,705141,439146,29013.5-11.2
Volkswagen 74,77484,89287,3848.0-11.9
Audi 29,72231,52730,6723.1-5.9
Seat 11,80313,39317,3901.3-12.0
Skoda 9,35711,36610,0661.0-18.0
FORD 43,31755,90765,5074.7-22.6
GM Group 42,99057,33670,4624.6-25.2
Opel 32,93042,38257,1133.5-22.5
Chevrolet 10,05714,94413,3151.0-32.8
TOYOTA Group 36,26534,67737,2463.94.5
NISSAN Group 34,98838,66436,2693.8-9.6
FIAT Group 32,91933,48044,9613.5-19.0
Fiat 26,04823,92234,0032.88.7
HYUNDAI Group 31,85731,33024,3783.41.6
Kia 17,29916,87013,6701.92.5
Hyundai 14,55814,46010,7081.60.6
BMW Group 31,57234,82034,2293.4-9.3
BMW 22,23723,40323,4152.4-5.0
Mini 9,32611,40410,8031.0-18.0
MERCEDES Group 26,85726,95526,5182.9-0.4
Mercedes-Benz 24,33824,14523,0732.60.8
Source: CCFA / Figures include only brands selling more than 10,000 cars

Best-Selling Car Manufacturers and Brands in France in 2013 (Half Year)

Except for Toyota and Hyundai, all car-manufacturing groups saw a decline in sales in France during the first half of 2013. The only car brands to have improved sales during the first six months of 2013 in France were Dacia, Fiat, Toyota, Kia, Hyundai, and Mercedes-Benz.

The PSA Group remained the strongest car manufacturer in France but both Peugeot and especially Citroen underperformed the market.

Renault remained the second strongest car manufacturer in France followed by the Volkswagen Group. Another six months of very weak sales saw Ford reclaiming fourth place from GM.

Toyota was the most improved manufacturing group in France and gained two places at the expense of the Nissan and BMW groups. The Italian FIAT conglomerate improved a place from last year, as did the Hyundai Group. BMW slipped from seventh last year to tenth while the Mercedes Group continue to outperform the wider market.

There were no changes at the top of the list of best-selling car brands in France during the first half of 2013. Renault continues to lead Peugeot and Citroen with fourth-placed Volkswagen the strongest foreign brand.

Dacia was the most improved brand and moved up two places to fifth at the expense of Ford and Opel. Ford slipped on place to sixth while another weak performance by Opel saw the brand slipping from sixth to ninth.

Toyota saw an increase in sales in France and improved two places to seventh. Nissan remained at eighth and Audi at tenth.

German luxury car brands continue to outperform the overall French car market with Mercedes-Benz even recording positive numbers.

Top-Selling Car Models in France in 2013 (Half Year)

The top ten best-selling car models in France during the first six months of 2013 according to sales figures released by the CCFA were:

RankMake & Model HY 2013 % Market Share Q1/2013 % Market Share
1Renault Clio IV 55,8876 27,6456.4
2Peugeot 208 51,6405.6 24,0105.5
3Renault Scénic III 27,0452.9 11,5032.7
4Renault Mégane III 25,4352.7 13,3253.1
5Citroën C3 II 23,3342.5 10,9372.5
6Peugeot 3008 21,5692.3 10,2432.4
7Citroën C4 II 21,2102.3 10,1022.3
8Volkswagen Polo 20,3332.2 10,1512.3
9Renault Twingo II 20,3132.2 10,2052.4
10Dacia Sandero 19,7492.1 9,0672.1

There were no changes in the car models on the top ten best-selling cars list in France for the first half of 2013 compared to the first quarter of this year. The only position changes on the list were that the Renault Scenic and Mégane swopped places, as did the Citroën C4 and Renault Twingo.

The Volkswagen Polo remained France’s favorite imported car. However, if sales of the Golf VII (eleventh) and the outgoing Golf VI are added, the Volkswagen Golf would have outsold the Polo. (F130702)

About the author:

Henk Bekker

Henk Bekker is a freelance writer with over 20 years of experience in online writing. His best-selling cars website has been reporting car sales statistics since 2008 with classic car auction prices focusing on the most expensive automobiles sold at public auctions in the past decade. He also owns the travel websites European-Traveler.com and Lake Geneva Switzerland. Henk holds an MBA from Edinburgh Business School and an MSc in Finance from the University of London.