Three months of higher car sales in Germany saw the first quarter of 2014 with an increase of 5.4% in new passenger vehicle registrations. Volkswagen remains the top-selling car brand with the VW Golf still Germany’s favorite car model.
March 2014 was the third consecutive month of higher car sales in Germany leading to an increase of 5.6% in new vehicle registrations during the first quarter of the year. Volkswagen easily remained the best-selling car marque in Germany although VW, like most other German brands, underperformed the overall market. Ford and Opel both had very strong sales at the start of 2014. German car production and vehicle exports continued to increase during the first three months of 2014.
The German Vehicle Market in 2014 (Q1)
The total German vehicle market grew by 6.8% during the first quarter of 2014 to 832,222 vehicles according to the KBA. New passenger vehicle registrations increased by 5.6% to 711,753 cars in 2014 (Q1). However, this is still well below the 773,636 cars sold in Germany during the first three months of 2012.
New registrations of electric cars during the first three months in Germany in 2014 increased by 330.9% over a year ago. However, this still amounts to only 823 electric passenger vehicles sold during the first quarter of 2014 in Germany. At the beginning of 2014, only 12,156 electric cars were registered in total in Germany.
Car production in Germany during the first quarter of 2014 increased by 11% to 1,475,200 vehicles according to the VDA. Of these, 1,143,600 (+10%) were exported.
Best-Selling Car Manufacturers in Germany in 2014 (Q1)
The top-selling car brands in Germany in January, February and March 2014 according to new passenger vehicle registration data released by the KBA were:
|BRAND||2014 (Q1)||% Share||% Change|
Top-selling Car Brands in Germany in 2014 (Q1)
There was little change in the composition of the top-ten list of best-selling car brands in Germany during the first quarter of 2014 compared to a year ago. Volkswagen and Mercedes remained the most popular car brands in Germany although both marques underperformed the broader market.
Audi saw strong increases in sales at the start of 2014 allowing VW’s luxury brand to overtake BMW, which underperformed the market. A year ago, BMW sold only 38 more cars than Audi during the first quarter of the year.
Although Opel and Ford maintained their overall rank positions from a year ago, both makes saw very strong growth with Ford sales increasing by a quarter. VW-owned Skoda similarly outperformed the market and strengthens its claim to being the most popular imported car brand in Germany.
Renault maintained its position from a year ago despite slightly weaker sales. Seat sales increased strongly allowing VW’s Spanish brand to take ninth place in Germany. Hyundai sales were strongly down and the South Korean carmaker slipped from ninth a year ago to tenth.
Other salient features from the car sales statistics in Germany during the first quarter of 2014:
- Toyota sold only 3 cars more than a year ago allowing Nissan to take its eleventh place.
- Japanese brands Nissan, Mazda and Suzuki all increased sales by around a quarter.
- Ahead of a new model launch, BMW’s Mini brand slipped 7% while Mercedes brand Smart is down 15% with its new model only due later in the year.
- Jaguar achieved the biggest percentage increase in sales in Germany during the first quarter of 2014 but Ford had the largest volume increase.
- Chevrolet – which has announced its withdrawal from the European market – was the worst performer while Hyundai contracted the most of any top-20 brand.
The Volkswagen Golf remains Germany’s most popular car model by car during the first quarter of 2014.