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Finland 1981-1982: Lada 2105 takes control, Datsun #1 brand

The Lada 1200/2105 is the best-selling vehicle in Finland over the period.

* See the Top 50 All-brands and models by clicking on the title *

The Finnish new car market edges up 1.7% year-on-year in 1981 to 104.957 registrations. Datsun remains the best-selling carmaker in the country for the third year in a row despite a 12% drop to 14.5% share. That’s still almost 5.000 units abc the #2 Ford surging 75% and five spots to 9.8% of the market. Toyota (-14%) is relegated to third place above Lada (-0.1%) and Fiat (-4%) while Opel (+35%) and Talbot (+40%) both gain two ranks to #6 and #7 respectively. Swedish brands are out of fashion: Volvo is down 2% to #8, outselling Saab (-13%) for the first time since 1970. Volkswagen (+14%) remains at a lowest-ever #10 but Mitsubishi (+15%) is now knocking at the Top 10’s door and BMW (+47%) is up to a record 16th place.

Talbot Horizon

Thanks to the arrival of the new 2105 sedan, the Lada Zhiguli (+1%) reclaims the Finland models top spot for the 7th time in the past 8 years, dislodging last year’s leader the Datsun Cherry (-16%). The Fiat 127 (-2%) climbs back onto the podium with the Toyota Corolla (-8%) and Datsun Sunny (-8%) in tow. The Opel Kadett soars 62% to #6, the Ford Escort is up 232% to #7 and the Talbot Horizon up 50% to #9. Notice also the Ford Fiesta up 70% to #12, the Mazda 323 up 63% to #15 and the BMW 3 Series up 55% to #23. The VW Jetta lands directly at #32, just above the Golf.

The Opel Kadett scores its first Finnish podium in 1982.

With sales up 21.9% to 128.017 in 1982, Finnish new car registrations post a new all-time volume record, beating the 117.967 units of 1973. Datsun celebrates four consecutive years on top, following the market at +22% to an unchanged 14.5% share. Ford (+21%) and Toyota (+18%) follow like last year, with Opel (+74%) overtaking Lada (+14%) and Fiat (-14%). Talbot (+17%) brilliantly holds onto the 7th spot ahead of Saab (+15%) back above Volvo (+1%) while Mazda surges 104% to break into the Top 10 for the second time after 1977, reaching a record 9th place. Volkswagen (+14%) is knocked outside the Top 10 for the first time in history. BMW (+59%) remains at a record #16 and we welcome two new Japanese brands this year: Suzuki (#22) and Subaru (#35).

The Mazda 323 makes it four Japanese nameplates in the Finnish Top 6 in 1982, a record.

The Lada 1200-2106 (+14%) continues to dominate the Finnish models ranking, posting an 8th win in the past 9 years but the Datsun Cherry (+20%) ends the year only 64 sales below. The Opel Kadett gains 49% to climb onto the podium for the first time, with the Toyota Corolla (+20%) remaining at #4 and the Mazda 323 more than doubling its sales (+103%) to leap up 10 spots and break into the Top 5. The Datsun Sunny (+21%) makes it four Japanese nameplates in the Top 6, a record. The Opel Ascona continues its ascension, up 151% and 12 spots to #8. The VW Polo (+459%) is back inside the Top 20 but the VW Gold disappears from the Top 50.

Previous year: Finland 1980: Datsun and Cherry best-sellers

Full Year 1981 and 1982 Top 50 All-brands and models below.

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