Wednesday, January 6, 2016

December 2015 Subcompact Car Sales and Reflections on the 2015 Small Car Market

December 2015 Subcompact Car Sales

With falling gas prices throughout 2015, small car sales didn't post up the big numbers they have in the past. That being said, there were winners and losers.

Starting with December itself, the biggest increase in sales vs. Dec. 2014 was the Buick Encore which sold more than double the amount of cars it did last year at this time. Mazda's hot-selling Miata continues to post positive year over year gains, and BMW's electrified i3 sold a healthy 40.4% more cars than Dec. '14.

In the loser category for December, the generally unpopular Fiat 500L was down 79%, followed by the Toyota Yaris, and MINI Paceman. I can't speak for the 500L or the Paceman, but I know the Yaris was in very short supply in the latter months of '15.

So which small model sold the most units total this year? That honor goes to the Kia Soul, which moved a whopping 147,113 units, outselling the Nissan Versa by just 2,585 units. A distant third goes to the Buick Encore, which moved 67,549 units.

The slowest sellers? Well the slothiest goes to the MINI Paceman which managed to move just 1,708 units all year. The Honda CR-Z and MINI Cooper /S Convertible round out the bottom three.

Another interesting foot note is that Mitsubishi proved it can also sell a small car, as the rebounding Japanese brand sold a healthy 21,515 units, making it the company's second best selling vehicle after the Outlander Sport. Taking a page out of the Chevy Spark playbook, the miniature Mirage offers four doors, great fuel economy, and popular tech bits. It is still rather Spartan. It's also very inexpensive. The Spark, by the way, was down 16.2% for the year.

However, where some of the cars slowed down in sales, the subcompact crossover segment more than made up for it.

Buick Encore
Next time people say U.S. buyers don't like small cars, point them to this blog post. American's love small cars—as long as they're labeled as crossovers and have available AWD.

Case in point? The aforementioned Buick Encore's 67,549 units sold this year. And guess what? Its twin, the Chevy Trax, moved another 63,030 units. As predicted, Jeep's Renegade is killing it thus far and has sold 60,946 models in nine months. Honda's HR-V has sold nearly 42,000 units, too.

If you add in sales of all the subcompact crossovers sold this year (500X, Countryman, CX-3, Encore, HR-V, Juke, Renegade, and Trax), it amounts to more than 293,000 units sold. And if you include the fairly small Subaru Crosstrek, which sold 89,000 on its own, you get more than 382,000 small crossovers sold in 2015. Yes, the subcompact crossover market was smokin' hot in 2015, and I'll be this trend soldiers on into 2016, too.

Make/Model% Dec. '15 vs. '14Units Dec. '15% YTD Dec. '15 vs. Dec. '14Units YTD
Buick Encore109.5649838.267549
Mazda MX-5 Miata86.870681.18591
BMW i340.4142281.011024
Chevrolet Sonic33.77293-30.764775
Huyndai Veloster33.32246-12.124245
Honda CR-Z31.0316-13.73073
Kia Soul22.7121591.2147113
Nisssan Versa21.1110583.4144528
MINI Cooper /S Hardtop 4 DR12.012471026.815189
Mitsubishi Mirage11.2126228.821515
MINI Cooper Countryman10.72148-26.316686
Ford Fiesta-4.735502.064458
Toyota Prius c-6.42861-5.438484
Nissan Juke-9.11958-29.027121
Smart ForTwo-31.2669-28.47484
MINI Cooper /S Convertible-32.9147-12.43098
Honda Fit-34.94197-11.152724
Fiat 500-35.01510-26.025084
Kia Rio-48.2997-33.923742
Chevrolet Spark-55.41340-16.232809
Hyundai Accent-68.32718-2.961486
MINI Cooper /S Hardtop 2 DR-68.8956-8.019778
MINI Paceman-70.538-18.01708
Toyota Yaris-76.537726.416779
Fiat 500L-79.0308-37.07863
Jeep Renegade08975060946
Chevrolet Trax05323063030
Honda HR-V04737041969
Fiat 500X0199609463
Scion iA0180807605
Mazda CX-30166306406

1 comment:

murphyseanm said...

Just over a million sub compacts sold this year. That is pretty good for the small car crowd. I feel like it is making our offerings better as they sell more.