Small cars dominated the list of the UK's best selling cars of 2014 with Ford taking the top two places with its Fiesta and Focus models.
Ford sold 131,254 fiesta models in 2014, 35% more than its closest rival, the Ford Focus, which sold just over 85,140, meaning with those two vehicles alone, Ford sold nearly 600 cars in the UK every day of 2014.
The remainder of the best selling cars of 2014 list certainly continued the trend of the first two spots and was dominated by the small cars which included: the Vauxhall Corsa (position 3), the Volkswagen Golf (position 4), the Vauxhall Astra (position 5), the Volkswagen Polo (Position 7), the Audi A3 (position 8) and the Fiat 500 (position 9).
Nissan UK scored a double celebration with both of its UK-made SUV models, the Qashqai (position 6) and the compact Juke (position 10), making it into the top 10 of the best selling cars of 2014.
Overall UK new car registrations reached 10-year high in 2014 with a total of 2,476,435 new cars hitting the roads. Every month in 2014 saw an increase, with December’s 8.7% rise the 34th consecutive month of growth.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “UK new car registrations returned to pre-recession levels in 2014, as pent-up demand from the recession years combined with confidence in the economy saw consumer demand for the latest models grow consistently and strongly.
“The year was particularly strong for alternatively-fuelled vehicles as increased choice, coupled with a growing desire for reduced costs and greater efficiency, resulted in a quadrupling of plug-in car registrations over 2013. With a variety of new plug-in models expected in 2015, this area of the market will continue to grow significantly. For the market as a whole, we expect a more stable 2015 as demand levels off.”
The rising demand for alternatively-fuelled vehicles in 2014 saw new car registrations increase four-fold from 3,586 in 2013 to 14,498 in 2014. Each of the 10 best-selling brands in the UK now has a ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEV) in its model range.
According to the SMMT, the market for small cars (Mini and Supermini segments) has grown considerably, supported by lower running costs and advances in comfort and safety levels and the ULEV market has been buoyed for the same reasons.
Ford confirmed in December last year that aside from the economical standard versions of its cars, it will also be launching a range of performance models including an all-new Focus RS – which it considers the ultimate performance version of the model. The RS model is just one of more than 12 new performance vehicles coming for global enthusiasts through 2020. This is part of the company’s plan to deliver more performance vehicles, parts and accessories for customers around the world – more quickly – through a new global Ford Performance team.
“Ford remains committed to innovation through performance,” says Raj Nair, Ford’s group vice president, Global Product Development. “Through our global Ford Performance team that ties together racing, performance vehicles, and parts, we can more quickly bring to market products and accessories that meet the needs of customers around the world on-road and on the track.”
The best selling cars of 2014
David Raistrick, UK Automotive Leader at Deloitte said: “In the year ahead, it will be interesting to see whether the falling price of petrol and diesel impacts the alternatively fuelled vehicle market. It will also be worth watching whether changes in the pension industry, which will give people of retirement age full access to their pension fund, provide a further boost to the sector. Finally, it is possible we could see some pressure on residual values given the likely increase of nearly new stock hitting the used market.
“Taking all of these matters into account, our analysis suggests that the UK’s new car market should continue to be a success story over the next twelve months, though it is unlikely that the rate of growth achieved over the past 34 months will continue.