Fleet News

March sales: Qashqai fuels Nissan boom

Ford enjoyed the largest share of the March ‘08’ plate change and overtook Vauxhall to become the biggest-selling manufacturer in fleet this year.

Ford sold 30,819 cars in fleet last month, down 3.9% on the same month last year but enough to oust Vauxhall, which sold 29,306 cars (-0.4%).

However, all three of Ford’s best-selling models saw large sales drops during the month – Focus was down 17.5%, Mondeo down 18.9% and the Fiesta fell by 17.9%.

The table below shows that half of the top 10 best-selling models in fleet saw sales decline.

The exceptions were the Volkswagen Golf (up 2.2%), Vauxhall Corsa (16.6%), Vauxhall Zafira (21.1%), Vauxhall Vectra (4.5%) and Peugeot 207 (35.6%).

Elsewhere among the top 10 manufacturers in fleet, Honda sales grew by 73.2% with increases across the range – most notably the CR-V, which sold twice as many in fleet as this time last year.

Nissan saw an 86.3% rise thanks to strong demand for the Note and Fleet News Award-winning Qashqai models.

Paul Willcox, Nissan managing director, said: “While Note has been particularly popular, our core fleet market performance has been strong generally, driven not only by the introduction of Qashqai but also by other models such as the Micra and X-Trail.

“Customer response to Qashqai has been outstanding, vindicating our bold approach to pushing styling boundaries. It has clearly tapped into a strong desire for a distinctive crossover design with SUV overtones.”

The other big winner in fleet was Mercedes-Benz, which increased sales by more than 20% in March thanks to strong demand for the new C-Class range.

Renault saw fleet sales fall by 21.3%, with Megane registrations decreasing by 24.1% to 4,983.

 

Top ten fleet manufacturers
  Company Mar 08 Mar 07 % change
1 Ford 30,819 32,049 -3.9
2 Vauxhall 29,306 29,398 -0.4
3 Volkswagen 15,313 16,548 -7.5
4 Peugeot 11,720 11,392 2.9
5 Audi 10,275 10,408 -1.3
6 Honda 9,759 5,633 73.2
7 Renault 9,054 11,498 -21.3
8 BMW 9,046 10,125 -10.7
9 Nissan 8,636 4,634 86.3
10 Mercedes-Benz 7,702 6,270 22.8

 

Top ten fleet models
  Model Mar 08 Mar 07 % change
1 Ford Focus 11,740 14,225  -17.5
2 Vauxhall Astra 10,395 12,582 -17.4
3 Volkswagen Golf 6,415 6,279 2.2
4 Vauxhall Corsa 6,156 5,280 16.6
5 Ford Mondeo 5,783 7,133 -18.9
6 Vauxhall Zafira 5,702 4,707 21.1
7 Ford Fiesta 5,466 6,652 -17.9
8 Vauxhall Vectra 5,304 5,072 4.5
9 Renault Megane 4,983 6,561 -24.1
10 Peugeot 207 4,840 3,568 35.6

 

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