SUVs and crossovers is the answer, the rise in demand for these vehicles types inevitably encourages growth which means a sales increase of 21 percent in Europe during 2014.
Combined nearly 2.5 million units were were sold and the brands ranged from the BMW X5, Vauxhall/Opel Mokka and the Nissan Qashqai. In total 12.5 million cars were sold, of all types, 1 in every 5 European car buyers purchased a crossover or SUV in 2014.
The Nissan Qashqai has been the clear winner and is seen as forging a new niche, a recipe that was quickly adopted by other manufacturers.
The Qashqai may be difficult to spell correctly in multiple succession but it out sells its rivals in the compact SUV segment with some ease, 205k units were sold in 2014. More than the VW Tiguan and Toyota Rav4 combined.
The Renualt-Nissan partnership also helped boost sales of the second generation subcompact SUV Renault Captur with 165k units finding new owners in 2104.
Electric cars sales are also on the rise, 60k units were sold in Europe last year, a 79 percent increase over 2013 although it represents a mere 0.47 percent of the combined market share. The Nissan Leaf was the top seller followed by the Renault Zoe and BMW i3.
The VW Polo, Renualt Clio and Ford continue the trend of being Europes top three and best selling subcompact cars by volume with 2.5 million sales in 2014.
The most popular individual model was the VW Golf, it seems the European love affair with VW’s bread winner continues, 500k units were sold during 2014 twice the amount Ford managed with the Focus.