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Europe October 2018: Post-WLTP hangover softens (-7.4%), VW Group (-21.6%) still struggles

The Peugeot 3008 is the best-selling SUV In Europe for the 2nd month in a row.

* Now updated with final figures for the Top 10 groups, Top 70 brands and Top 410 models *

According to final data shared by our partner JATO Dynamics, the European new car market is still reeling from post-WLTP hangover, registering a second consecutive decline at -7.1% to 1.117.529 units (Europe 27 markets ex-Turkey and Russa), the lowest October result since 2014, leading to a year-to-date volume up 1.4% to 13.377.857. This continued depressed climate is due to the slow transition into WLTP homologation with 37% of all versions available in Europe not yet homologated at end-October, a worrying plateau vs.the 43% figure a month earlier. Out of the 30 European markets surveyed, only four manage a year-on-year gain this month: Lithuania (+21.7%), Greece (+12.9%), Croatia (+10.6%) and Hungary (+5.5%), with Poland (-1.5%), France (-1.6%), the UK (-2.9%), Slovakia (-3.9%) and Portugal (-4.2%) all maintaining their fall below -5%. At the other end of the scale, Romania (-32.9%), Sweden (-28.1%), Austria (-20.3%) and the Netherlands (-17.3%) are the hardest hit. Year-to-date, once again Lithuania (+26.3%) leads the gainers ahead of Romania (+27.6%), Hungary (+24.2%), Croatia (+20.5%) and Greece (+19.7%) whereas the UK (-7.2%), Norway (-4.2%), Ireland (-4.4%), Switzerland (-3.4%) and Italy (-3.1%) all struggle.

European BMW sales gain 13.3% year-on-year in October.

After freefalling 48.4% to #2 in September, the VW Group (-21.9%) reclaims the #1 spot it holds year-to-date but remains in very poor shape, with Porsche (-61.9%) and Audi (-52.8%) still in hell but Seat (-15.6%), Volkswagen (-15.5%) and Skoda (-1.3%) on the mend. The PSA Group (-1.1%) once again vastly outperforms the market thanks to a lineup that was WLTP-ready months before the September 1 deadline: Citroen (+3.7%) and Peugeot (+2%) are in positive while Opel (-7.1%) exactly matches the market. Renault-Nissan (-16.3% vs. -33.1% last month) and FCA (-13.6% vs. -32.1%) continue to implode with double-digit losses whereas the premium segment is the main beneficiary of these troubled times with the BMW Group (+14%), Geely Group/Volvo (+11.3%) and Daimler (+7.3%) all swimming upstream. Toyota Motor (+4.5%) also scores a very impressive result just as Hyundai-Kia (-4.1%) and Ford Motor (-1.7%) manage to control their fall somewhat.

The new i-Pace lifts Jaguar up 65.4% across Europe.

Brand-wise, Volkswagen (-15.5%) climbs back up to its traditional pole position despite posting another double-digit decline, with the remainder of the Top 12 following widely different directions: if BMW (+13.3%), Mercedes (+7.6%), Toyota (+5.1%), Citroen (+3.7%) and Peugeot (+2%) shine with year-on-year gains, Renault (-23.6%), Fiat (-16.4%) and Opel (-7.1%) jump on the brakes while Skoda (-1.3%) and Ford (-1.7%) are on pause. Further down, MG (+303.6%), Jaguar (+65.4%), Mitsubishi (+46.6%), Chevrolet (+46.3%), Cadillac (+34.7%), Aston Martin (+32.9%), Mini (+16.6%), Rolls-Royce (+15.4%), Jeep (+11.5%), and Volvo (+11.4%) are among the best performers whereas Bentley (-64.5%), Infiniti (-63.5%), Porsche (-61.9%), Audi (-52.8%), Alfa Romeo (-41.8%), McLaren (-41.2%), Tesla (-34.9%), Nissan (-27.7%), Ssangyong (-26.8%), Lada (-25.5%), Maserati (-21%) and DS (-11.8%) all would rather forget October 2018. Joining fellow 2018 newcomers Alpine (#47) and Borgward (#68), new brand Cupra (#51) makes its entrance on the European market the month with 90 sales of Ateca.

Second consecutive – and ever – Top 5 finish for the Toyota Yaris in Europe.

Over in the models ranking, the VW Golf (-26%) is back up 11 spots on September to reclaim its traditional European pole position with a safe 8.400 unit gap over the #2, the Renault Clio (+2.1%) while the VW Polo (+60.4%) and Ford Fiesta (+1.7%) make sure the Top 4 reproduces the YTD order. The Toyota Yaris (+8.5%) posts another outstanding month, scoring its 2nd consecutive – and ever – Top 5 finish at #5 after hitting a record #4 in September. The Peugeot 3008 (+12.1%) steps up one spot on last month to a new all-time record #8, holding onto the title of best-selling SUV in Europe for the 2nd straight month (and ever) at a time when the usual blockbusters remain in great difficulty due to the WLTP transition, with the Peugeot 2008 (+5.4%) even snapping the #3 SUV spot this month below the VW Tiguan (-14.8%) but above the Renault Captur (-27%), VW T-Roc (+5808%), Nissan Qashqai (-35.2%) and Dacia Duster (-2.1%). The Mercedes A-Class (+32.7%) posts another excellent score at #14, as do the Toyota C-HR (+48.5%), Ford Ecosport (+103.2%), Citroen C3 Aircross (+125.5%), Skoda Karoq (+736%) and Seat Arona (+690.1%) inside the Top 50..

Previous month: Europe September 2018: Post-WLTP knocks VW (-52%), lifts Opel to #1

One year ago: Europe October 2017: Golf, 208 and 3008 shine in market up 5.6%

Full October 2018 Top 10 groups, Top 70 brands and Top 410 models below.

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