Hero of the month: the Nissan Serena.
* NOW UPDATED with the Top 50 All-brands, Top 30 regular cars and Top 35 kei cars *
It’s a second consecutive month just edging into negative territory for Japanese new car sales at -0.4% year-on-year in October to 378.741 registrations, bringing the year-to-date tally down 3.1% to 4.155.125 units. Toyota remains master in command but drops 2% to 119.115 sales and 31.5% share, still slightly above its YTD level (30.7%). Honda gains 3% to hit 15.1%, distancing Suzuki (-5%), Daihatsu (+1%), Nissan (-0.3%), Mazda (-14%) and Subaru (+15%) as the Top 7 is unchanged on both September and YTD. Mitsubishi (-2%) returns to more normal levels now that the uncertainty around its buyout by Nissan has evaporated. Mercedes (+11%) continues to dominate foreigners above BMW (+5%) while both Volkswagen (+25%) and Audi (+37%) breathe a sigh of relief but the comparison set in October 2015 just after the emissions scandal broke is particularly weak. Further down, notice Jeep (+24%), Peugeot (+48%), Renault (+62%), Abarth (+224%) and Smart (+938%) posting imposing year-on-year gains.
The new model pushes the Honda Freed up to 5th place overall.
Over in the models ranking, the top ranks suddenly get tighter with the Toyota Prius holding to the pole position for dear life with 14.053 sales (+74%) but is now just 1.573 units above the Toyota Aqua (-20%) – that gap was 4.553 sales last month. The big event in October is the new generation Nissan Serena shooting up 6 spots on last month and 232% year-on-year to third place with 12.408 sales. Just below the Toyota Sienta down 1% at #4, the Honda Freed also gets a boost thanks to its facelift at +201% year-on-year and up 20 ranks on last month to #5. Notice also the Toyota Passo (+68%), Toyota Vellfire (+33%), Mazda Axela (+23%), Subaru Levorg (+58%), Toyota Premio (+82%), Subaru Forester (+157%) and Toyota Estima (+48%) all in frank improvement compared to last year. In the kei cars aisle, the Honda N-BOX (+13%) keeps the lead nut the Daihatsu Move (+83%) is getting closer while the Nissan Dayz steps up to third place overall despite dropping 2% this month. The Toyota Pixis also shines at +40%.
Full October 2016 Top 50 All-brands, Top 30 regular cars and Top 35 kei cars below.