11 June 2014

Sweden Top 4 Brands : 1950-59

1959 Volvo Amazon. A nice looking car for its day

Thanks to the good folk of BilSweden, we can have an insight into the Swedish car market back in the 1950s. Sweden didn't have a dominant local brand such as VW in Germany and Fiat in Italy. Therefore, the changes in positions in the top 4 are greater, especially that coveted top spot.

Ford (Germany and UK combined) started out top but fell away slightly as the decade proceded. Ford at the beginning of the 50's were mainly from England, with Germany, France and the USA following. By 1959, Germany had just passed England as the largest source of cars, with the US adding some units.

Opel/Vauxhall combined (GM Europe) did well although both brands were selling separately there during those years. That was not uncommon back then, as the cars were different. Vauxhall sales were consistently about a tenth of Opel sales through the 60s. I haven't included GM US sales in the OpV figure, and GM cars from across the Atlantic were very popular in Sweden as well.

VW was up and down, even missing out for two years. Local marque Volvo strengthened as time passed and was well ensconced at the top by 1959. The only other make to get into the top 4 was BMC (Austin 2/1 in sales over Morris).

Sales figures are in thousands, with a decimal place due to not too large unit sales. The extreme right shows the share for the top 4 and unlike other markets with a dominant local brand, their 50% in 1950 is very low. However, in that period the top 4 established themselves with an increasing proportion of total sales.


Yr 1st Sales % 2nd Sales % 3rd Sales % 4th Sales % %

1950 Ford 10.1 16 VW 8.3 13 Vol 7.4 12 OpV 5.1 8 50

1951 Vol 9.3 25 VW 7.3 12 Ford 7.0 11 OpV 5.0 9 46

1952 Ford 7.2 18 Vol 7.1 14 VW 6.0 12 OpV 5.0 10 49

1953 Vol 14.7 19 Ford 9.1 12 OpV 8.2 11 BMC 7.9 10 52

1954 Vol 21.2 17 Ford 19.1 15 OpV 13.7 11 BMC 13.0 10 53

1955 VW 25.9 20 Vol 25.0 20 OpV 17.2 13 Ford 16.3 13 66

1956 Vol 26.3 20 VW 23.4 18 OpV 21.7 16 Ford 15.7 12 66

1957 OpV 30.9 20 Vol 27.9 18 VW 27.3 18 Ford 16.8 11 67

1958 Vol 31.2 21 OpV 27.9 19 VW 24.8 17 Ford 16.9 11 68

1959 Vol 39.0 23 VW 31.1 18 OpV 29.4 17 Ford 18.1 11 70

For others in the series, please click on the years: 2000-13, 1990-99, 1980-89,
1970-79, and 1960-69.

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