Let’s have a Fiesta: Ford becomes Europe’s top-selling brand in March

Ford of Europe announced that it was the No.1 automaker in Europe for the month of March with a sales volume of 192,500. Total sales volume saw a 16.1 percent increase versus March 2009, and was Ford’s tenth consecutive month-on-month increase in sales. In terms of first-quarter sales, Ford remains Europe’s No.2 best-seller year-to-date.

Market share was at a twelve-year high of 10.4 per cent and the company’s best share in its main 19 European markets since August 1998.

“Attaining the No.1 position in the European market for March and being No.2 year-to-date ““ despite the continuing aggressive discounting we have seen from some competitors ““ is a great testament to the hard work of the Ford team and especially our dealers across Europe who have done an outstanding job in supporting and satisfying their customers,” said Ingvar Sviggum, Vice President, Marketing, Sales and Service, Ford of Europe.

Ford Fiesta sales were the strongest in the lineup at 68,800, the highest for any Ford model on record in a single month in Europe.

“Fiesta continues to be an outstanding performer for us with 140,400 sold in Europe during the first three months of the year, and close to 70,000 sold in March alone,” said Roelant de Waard, Vice President, Sales, Ford of Europe. “Globally, we’ve now sold over 750,000 Fiestas since the latest generation model was launched almost 18 months ago.”

Click through for Ford of Europe’s March and first-quarter highlights.

March Highlights

Ford Market Performance:

* Ford No.1 best-selling brand in Europe.
* Market leader in the UK, Denmark, Hungary, Ireland, the Netherlands and Turkey. Also passenger car market leader for the month in Spain.
* Increased share in 10 of Ford’s main 19 European markets.
* In Britain, Ford strengthened its market lead for the month with 72,700 new registrations, up by 10,300 units or 16.4 per cent on March 2009 – the highest March registrations of any market.
* Spain’s March volume was up by 86 per cent versus the same month last year or 6,300 units to 13,600. Ford’s market share there increased by 1.5 ppts to 9.8 per cent, marking the highest share gain within the five largest markets in March.
* Ford was the leading import brand in the Czech Republic and France. In the Czech Republic, Ford sold 2,000 vehicles in March, up by 26 per cent, and posted a 10.8 per cent market share, 0.5 ppts higher versus March 2009 – the highest March registrations and share there since 1993.
* In France, Ford increased volume to 16,700, up by more than 3,200 units ““ 24 per cent higher than prior year. Share was at 5.9 per cent, up by 0.3 ppts – the strongest March share and registrations results there since 1999.
* Ford was also No.1 imported brand in Italy, where share was at 11.6 per cent, up 1.4 ppts on March 2009. Sales volume there soared to 33,400, up by 9,300 units or 39 per cent, achieving the best March registrations since 1993.
* In The Netherlands, Ford’s March registrations of 5,300 were 35 per cent over 2009, resulting in the highest March volume there since 2001. Share was at 10.3 per cent, up by 0.8 ppts, the best March share since 1996.
* Highest share gains were delivered in Denmark (up 3.4 ppts; market share at 12.4 per cent, the highest share since March 1998), and Hungary (up 2.1 ppts; share at 15.8 per cent; the best March share since 1993).

Model Performance:

* Fiesta (68,800), Focus (40,200), and Transit (16,600) were Ford of Europe’s three top-selling vehicles (19 main European markets).
* Fiesta sales at 68,800 were the highest for any Ford model on record in a single month in Europe, making the Fiesta Europe’s No.1 best-selling car overall in March, an achievement which external sources will confirm later this month.
* Fiesta and Focus occupy the No.1 and No.2 position respectively in the UK. Fiesta was also the best-selling foreign vehicle for the month in Italy.
* Only 18 months after its debut, more than 750,000 customers have purchased the new Fiesta around the world, as Ford continues to launch this global car in the U.S. and other key Asian Pacific markets in 2010.
* Ka continues its success: 15,400 units sold in March, up by 3,200 or more than 26 per cent ““ the best March for Ka since 2002, and leading its segment in Spain.
* Best ever monthly volume for Kuga, which totaled 9,100 registrations in March, up by 3,300 units on the same month 2009.
* C-MAX and S-MAX were the best-selling foreign vehicles in their segment in France.
* Retail sales accounted for 70 per cent of new Kuga, 70 per cent of Fiesta, 70 per cent of Fusion and 68 per cent of Ka sales in March 2010.

First Quarter Performance:

* Ford No.2 best-selling brand in Europe.
* Market leader in the UK, Denmark, Hungary, Ireland and Turkey.
* Ford’s share increased in 7 of its main 19 European markets.
* Britain’s year-to-date sales volume increased by 12,100 to 110,100, up by 12.4 per cent on the first quarter 2009.
* No.1 imported brand in France, with registrations at 40,100, up by 5,500 or more than 15.9 per cent on 2009 ““ the best March year-to-date volume since 1999.
* Italy’s share in the first three months of 2010 was at 10.6 per cent, up by 0.7 ppts on 2009, the highest share gain within Ford”s five largest markets and the highest quarterly share ever for Ford in Italy, whilst first quarter registrations there were at 77,900 – up by 19,300 units or 33 per cent higher on the first three months 2009.
* Highest ever first quarter share in the Czech Republic at 9.0 per cent, also leading import brand in the first three months of 2010.
* Scandinavian markets continue to perform well in the first quarter of 2010. Sweden had registrations of 4,400, up by 1,000 units, or an increase of 28.7 per cent, the best first quarter volume since 2007.
* The highest share gains of all 19 markets in the first quarter of 2010 were in Denmark (+0.6 ppts at 10.8 per cent share, the best first quarter share result since 1997), Italy (+0.7 ppts to 10.6 per cent, and Spain (+0.5 ppts to 9.2 per cent).

Model Performance:

* The three best-selling vehicles year-to-date 2010 were the new Fiesta (140,400), Focus (79,900) and Ka (31,600).
* In the first quarter of 2010, new Fiesta sales were up 29,700 on 2009, the best first quarter sales and share for this model since 1996. Fiesta also remained best-selling foreign vehicle in Italy and France and was leading its segment in Spain year-to-date 2010.
* 31,600 new Ford Ka vehicles have been delivered to Ford customers so far this year, up 8,300 units versus the first three months of 2009. Share and sales volume were the best since 2002.
* Ford segment-leading in the UK with Fiesta, Focus, Mondeo and Galaxy in the first quarter.
* C-MAX and S-MAX were the top-selling imported products in their segment in France.
* Kuga was leading its segment in the first three months of 2010 in Italy, while Ka gained the No.1 segment position in Spain during the first three months of 2010.
* Fiesta remained No.1 best-selling car in the UK year-to-date, ahead of the Focus in No.2 position, while Transit was the best-selling commercial vehicle in the first quarter of 2010.

– By: Omar Rana