Fleet News

Fleet sales hit 1m unit mark

FLEET sales broke through the one million unit barrier in October as the new car market showed a 0.9% rise.

The second monthly gain this year after a strong September has seen the number of new cars sold in the UK so far this year reach 2,055,739. As a result, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has revised its yearly forecast up by 15,000 units to 2.345 million.

This would be nearly 4% down on 2005 and according to the SMMT the total market will continue to fall for the next two years, with forecasts of 2.315 million sales in 2007 and 2.3 million in 2008.

Of this year’s sales, fleets account for 48.7% year-to-date and businesses with 25 vehicles or fewer make up 6.7%. Combined they outstrip the private market’s share, which is 44.6%.

Ford remains the number one best-seller in fleet with 180,674 sales so far this year (up 0.8%), while Vauxhall retains second with sales down 8.5% to 169,077.

Ford has two models in the top 10 – the Focus in first and the Fiesta in third and continuing its huge sales growth (up 40.9%), while Vauxhall can count three cars – the Astra in second, Zafira in sixth and the Corsa seventh. However, Corsa sales are down 31.8% as Vauxhall phases out the current model and introduces the all-new supermini.

Elsewhere, Volkswagen continues to grow with sales up 19.6%, thanks mainly to a 36.1% rise in Passat sales, while sister company Audi continues to close the gap on its arch-rival BMW with sales up by 28.1%.

The two premium marques are both in the top 10, with BMW in sixth and Audi eighth thanks to strong growth from the A4 and A3 TDI diesel models – up 13.9 and 21.2% respectively. Mercedes-Benz holds on to the number 10 spot, although it has been leapfrogged by Citroën which is back to ninth spot.

Toyota has seen sales drop by nearly 9% and will be hoping that the arrival of its new Auris lower-medium model next year will reverse its fortunes.

Top 10s
HERE are the fleet-relevant tables for new car sales for the year-to-date (October) from the SMMT.

Top 10 petrol models
Model................ YTD 06 (% change)
1 Ford Focus 55,222 (-10.5)
2 Vauxhall Astra 44,437 (2.6)
3 Ford Fiesta 31,496 (42.1)
4 Vauxhall Corsa 27,334 (-32.5)
5 Renault Megane 25,078 (-23.9)
6 Vauxhall Zafira .. 24,520 (49.2)
7 Renault Clio 14,935 (12.2)
8 Peugeot 307 ... 13,854 (70.8)
9 VW Polo 11,636 (6.6)
10 Fiat G/Punto 10,913 (-)

Top 10 diesel models
Model.................YTD 06 (% change)
1 Ford Focus 30,760 (19.1)
2 Ford Mondeo 27,131 (-7.5)
3 VW Passat 23,345 (37.0)
4 Vauxhall Astra .19,696 (-21.9)
5 VW Golf 18,564 (-15.0)
6 Vauxhall Vectra 15,994 (-9.4)
7 Renault Megane 13,229 (-31.8)
8 Audi A4 12,508 (13.9)
9 Peugeot 307 12,143 (10.9)
10 Audi A3 10,244 (21.2)

Top 10 manufacturers
Make................ YTD 06 (% change)
1 Ford 180,674 (0.8)
2 Vauxhall 169,077 (-8.5)
3 Volkswagen 93,012 (19.6)
4 Peugeot 66,346 (20.1)
5 Renault 66,257 (-21.9)
6 BMW 45,844 (12.4)
7 Toyota 42,468 (-8.8)
8 Audi 39,702 (28.1)
9 Citroën 31,470 (2.8)
10 Mercedes-Benz 26,084 (12.6)

  • SALES of light commercial vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes were up 9.4% in October – pushing volumes for the year to date to 278,098 (up 1%).

    Top 10 fleet models
    YTD 2006, YTD 2005, % change
    Ford Focus 86,026 87,466 -1.7
    Vauxhall Astra 64,149 68,563 -6.5
    Ford Fiesta 38,863 27,564 40.9
    Renault Megane 38,307 52,369 -26.9
    Ford Mondeo 36,712 40,866 -10.2
    Vauxhall Zafira 31,472 24,097 30.6
    Vauxhall Corsa 31,064 45,527 -31.8
    Volkswagen Golf 31,047 30,552 1.6
    Peugeot 307 25,997 19,056 36.4
    Volkswagen Passat 24,812 18,237 36.1

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