The car sales and light commercial vehicles (LCVs) in Russia plunged by 44.7% in the first quarter of this year compared with the same period in 2022 or by 123,855 sold units, and amounted to 153,477 cars, according to the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee (AEB AMC).
Among them, the share of LCVs is 9.7% (14,922), that of SUVs 56.8% (87,109) Pick-ups 0.9% (1,457) and Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) accounted for 276 cars.
This is clearly an indication of Russia’s rising inflation and a struggling economy as the US-led Western powers-imposed sanctions on the country for invading Ukraine more than a year ago.
In March 2023, the sale of new cars and light commercial vehicles in Russia, as reported by the official manufacturers/distributors, decreased by 10.6% compared with March 2022 or by 5, 712 sold vehicles totalling 48,414 cars, the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee said.
Top 10 Car Sales
Elsewhere in Europe, Tesla Model Y was the best-selling car in Europe in 2023 with sales of 18,446 vehicles, thus registering a growth of +173% year on year. Ramping up production at Tesla’s factory in Berlin in Germany will be key to the firm securing its place at the top – rather than relying on imports batch-shipped from China and the US.
Following Tesla is last year’s second best-seller Dacia Sandero with 18,431 sales, a growth of +40% year on year.
Peugeot 208 has been placed third with 16,180 sales, +10% year on year and Volkswagen T-Roc with 15,760 sales, +68% year on year.
The Volkswagen T-Roc is a popular choice in Europe and this trend is all set to continue in the coming months. It ranked third last year, and its sales even outnumber those of the Volkswagen Golf. A recent facelift boosted its interior quality, addressing one of the few criticisms of this well-rounded crossover.
Opel/Vauxhall Corsa also registered a growth +29% year on year with 15,120 sales and has been the UK’s second best-selling car in 2021. The company plans to introduce a new model in the next few months.
Even Toyota Yaris Cross gained in sales by recording a growth of +54% year on year and sold 14,772 units. The company is confident that the Yaris supermini would outsell its stilted sibling as it emerged as a solid contender due to its eye-catching shape, fuel efficiency and low cost in the market.
Dacia Duster has recorded 14,038 sales and registered a growth of +33% year on year. The vehicle is a capable, hardy and most importantly cheap model, capturing a significant share of the booming crossover market. It is expected to be joined by the Dacia Bigster, a C-segment SUV spearheading Dacia’s push into larger, more profitable segments, soon.
As many as 13,542 Abarth/Fiat 500 cars were sold which registered a growth of +35% year on year.
However, the sale of Volkswagen Golf declined by 11% as it could sell only 13,399 sales year on year. Though a long-time favourite in Europe, but it leapfrogged by the smaller Peugeot 208 last year.
Skoda Octavia also registered a growth of 14% with 12,296 sales year on year and found a place among the top ten cars in Europe.