First quarter 2013 saw Toyota remaining the top-selling vehicle producer in Japan followed by Honda and Nissan. The Toyota Aqua and Prius were Japan’s favorite car models.
Toyota, Honda, and Nissan remained Japan’s top motor vehicle manufacturers during the first three months of 2013. In a weaker market, Hino and Lexus were the only Japanese vehicle producers able to increase sales while German carmakers Volkswagen, Mercedes, BMW, and Audi all increased new passenger vehicle registrations in Japan during the first three months of 2013. The Toyota Aqua replaced the Toyota Prius as Japan’s favorite car model.
The Japanese Vehicle Market in 2013 (Q1)
The total Japanese motorized vehicle market, including passenger cars, commercial vehicle, and buses, contracted by 9.4% to 1,528,009 new vehicle registrations during the first three months of 2013.
Although there is undoubtedly weakness in the Japanese vehicle market, it should be born in mind that the first quarter of 2012 was extraordinary with almost 50% growth over the troubled 2011 when economic problems combined with natural disasters (earthquake and tsunami) resulted in a very depressed market.
Best-Selling Car Producers in Japan in 2013 (Q1)
The top-selling vehicle producers in Japan from January to March 2013 according to car sales statistics released by JADA were:
Top Carmakers in Japan in 2013 (Q1)
Toyota, not surprisingly, remained the top vehicle maker in japan during the first three months of 2013. However, Toyota was the worst performer of the top 20 producers in Japan. Honda similarly underperformed the overall market but maintained second place on the list.
A resurgent Nissan ended just a thousand vehicles shy of regaining its traditional position as second strongest vehicle producer in Japan. Flat sales saw Suzuki overtake Daihatsu, which has a weak quarter. Mazda performed less bad than most while weak performances by Subaru and Mitsubishi did not result in any relative position changes.
Volkswagen remained the strongest imported car brand in Japan during the first three months of 2013. An increase in sales saw it overtake Isuzu to become the ninth largest carmaker in Japan.
Truck maker Hino and luxury car producer Lexus were the only two Japanese manufacturers to have showed an increase in unit sales during the first quarter of 2013. Strong growth by Mercedes-Benz allowed the German carmaker to move closer to Lexus, while BMW could overtake truck maker Mitsubishi Fuso. Audi show the strongest growth of all top car brands in Japan.
Top Ten Best-Selling Car Models in Japan in 2013 (Q1)
Japan’s ten favorite car models during January, February, and March according to car sales statistics released by JADA were:
|Make & Model||January||February||March||Q1/2013|
Compared to full year 2012, the Toyota Aqua has now firmly established itself as Japan’s favorite car ahead of its larger sibling Toyota Prius, which has now slipped to second place. The new Nissan Note shot up from seventh last year to third.
The aging Honda Fit slipped one place to fourth, selling only half the number of Aquas moved during the first quarter of 2013. The Nissan Serena and Toyota Vitz swapper positions while the Honda Freed slipped from fourth place last year.
The Toyota Crown shot up from 26th place last year by selling only around three thousand cars fewer during the first three months of 2013 as was sold during the whole of 2012. The evergreen Toyota Corolla slipped on position.
The Honda Stepwagon remains Japan’s favorite minivan but slipped one position, while the Toyota Vellfire slipped out of the top ten list altogether. The Subaru Impreza just missed out as the eleventh most popular car in Japan.