After registering strong results in 2019, new car sales in Europe were severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic last year. According to ACEA, the entity representing manufacturers on the continent, 11.961.182 units were registered in the 26 countries of the European Union, in addition to the United Kingdom, Norway, Iceland and Switzerland, or 24.3% less than in the previous year.
This was the first time since 1993 that sales did not exceed the barrier of 12 million units. All the 20 largest automakers recorded retracements in the double digits. Leading Volkswagen (1.346.999), for example, fell by almost 25%.
Third, in 2019, Ford (654.729) lost 3 positions and allowed the advancement of Peugeot (741.498) and Mercedes-Benz (738.236) – this last one was a leader among the premiums for the 5th consecutive year – to the 3rd and 4th places, respectively. Fiat (492.101), 11th in the last ranking, returned to the top 10. The negative highlight for Opel / Vauxhall (485.778), owner of the biggest retraction (-44%).
Concerning models of cars, Golf (281.093) reached the 13th consecutive year at the top – Peugeot 207, in 2007, was the last model to lead sales before the VW. This was the 33rd time in the last 38 years that Golf did not give opponents a chance, but now with a much smaller advantage over the nearest opponent (approximately 36 thousand units).
Preferred in February, May and June, Renault Clio (244.163) maintained its 2nd position in previous years. With 198.112 units, Peugeot 208 won its 1st annual podium. Eleventh in 2019, the Opel / Vauxhall Corsa (196.790) was very close. Toyota Yaris (177.440), 15th in 2019, secured its 1st top 5 on the continent. With 166.593 units, less than 400 units ahead of the Dacia Sandero (166.216), VW Polo fell from 3rd to 10th place.
The only one of the top 20 to grow (+ 2.8%), Toyota Corolla (136.095) was driven by the hybrid version. In 25th, the BMW 3 Series (117.859) was number 1 among the premiums – main rival, Mercedes Classe C (81.269) fell from 24th to 45th position. It’s also important to mention that electric Renault Zoe (99.303) more than doubled last year’s numbers.