10 August 2011

UK Sales - Top 20 Models: 1976

In 1976, the car market in the UK was quite different than it is now. BLMC makes are all gone, as the Chrysler/Hillman. Ford is still dominant, but with different model names. GM Vauxhall is stronger now, as are German marques. The figures below are as accurate as I can assertain:

1 Ford Escort 134,000
2 Ford Cortina 126,300
3 BL Mini 81,100
4 Morris Marina 71,300
5 Austin Allegro 55,200
6 Vauxhall Chevette 43,800
7 Ford Capri 36,100
8 Vauxhall Viva 33,900
9 Austin Maxi 33,500
10 Austin Princess 31,700
11 Chrysler Avenger 31,450
12 Datsun Sunny 30,450
13 Vauxhall Cavalier 29,750
14 Ford Granada 28,100
15 Datsun Cherry 21,200
16 Chrysler Hunter 20,200
17 Triumph Dolomite 19,700
18 Chrysler Alpine 16,150
19 Renault 5 15,700
20 VW Golf 15,500

Top 10 646,850
% of Total 50.31
Total 1,285,600

Of those cars, our family had an Australian built Marina (2.6 litre) and an Austin Maxi. I had a NZ assembled Hillman Avenger and my brother a Hillman Hunter company car. When I met my wife to be, she had a Vauxhall Viva. I remember hiring a Vauxhall Chevette rental car for an extended drive around the UK. My dream car in my youth was the Dolomite Sprint but it stayed a dream.

Cars today are better made, safer, technically more advanced, better value for money and bigger. They just do not have as much character. Would I want to go back to cars in 1976? No. I like looking back at those times though. It's a pity such data isn't more available as it cannot have market value now, just historical interest.

PS. Don't you think for the age of the design, the Hillman Hunter is still a fine looking car?

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