12 February 2010

Car Sales 2009: Russia


In 2008, Germany's car market was 3 million cars and falling. The Russian market, on the other hand, had reached 2.9 million and climbing quickly. It wasn't rocket science to work out that 2009 would see Russia become Europe's largest new car market. Well in 2009, the economic downturn was met by incentives in Germany and the market rebounded to 3.8 million, while the Russian market slumped to less that 1.5 million. What a turn around!

So which brands sold best in Russia for 2009? (AEB source):

09/08
1 1 Lada 350,000 24%
2 2 Chevolet 104,000 7.1%
3 5 Ford 82,000 5.6%
4 3 Hyundai 75,000 5.1%
5 9 Renault 72,000 4.9%
6 13 Kia 70,000 4.8%
7 4 Toyota 69,000 4.7%
8 6 Nissan 64,000 4.4%
9 7 GAZ 58,000 4%
10 11 Daewoo 51,500 3.5%
11 15 VW 45,000
12 8 Mitsubishi 41,500
13 16 UAZ 34,500
14 10 Opel 34,000
15 17 Skoda 33,000
16 14 Mazda 30,500
17 18 Peugeot 30,000
18 19 Suzuki 25,500
19 12 Honda 23,000
20 20 Fiat 18,000

Lada is still the darling of the market but is in financial trouble. Renault-Nissan has taken a stake in the brand, and its expertise should be of great help.
Second placed Chevrolet is a joint venture between GM and AvtoVAZ which makes Chevrolet Niva SUVs especially for the Russian market.
Renault is a strong fifth, but sales are almost exclusively Dacias made in Russia and sold as Renaults.
Tenth placed Daewoo makes and sells cars from GM Korea, sold elsewhere in Europe as Chevrolets. Complicated isn't it? But that's Russia. At least the Russians are more open about their car market than the Chinese are. Trust Chinese sales figures at your peril.
2010 is already showing that things are still grim on the car sales front. From March, the Russian government plans to offer US$1,700 vouchers to people to scrap cars that are 10 years old to buy locally made or assembled vehicles. Many feel that the measures are too small to do much and will be hindered by bureaucracy. Sales will be about the same as last years 1.5 million.

The bottom line: Brrr, another long winter for Russian car salesman.

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