Japan February. Kei cars dominate a market down 1.1%

Japan Auto Market

Japan Auto Market fell marginally down in February with 468.709 sales (-1.1%). The leader Toyota outpaced the market holding 28.1% of share, while Daihatsu impressed, up in double-digit. The Nissan Note is still the best regular car.

Economic Environment

Japanese economy returned to growth in the fourth quarter of the 2018 following a short-lived contraction in Q3 when a series of natural disasters disrupted business and consumer activities. Domestic demand drove Q4’s recovery, while external demand remained relatively weak despite rebounding.

Available data for this year suggests that growth momentum remains frail. Global trade uncertainty, the economic slowdown in China and a downturn in the global tech cycle are weighing on the external sector. This, in turn, hurt manufacturing activities, as reflected by the manufacturing PMI which hit a nearly three-year low in February.

Market Trend

Japanese vehicles market is the third in the World and really mature. In the recent years total sales had been between 5.0 million and 5.5 million (in the 2014).

According to the data released by the JADAJAMA and JAIA, in the 2018 the total vehicles (including HCVs and Bus) sold in the country have been 5.269.442 (+0.1%). Indeed, having started negatively the year, down 24% in the first quarter, the sales have recovered ending the year flat. This was the second consecutive positive annual score, the best result since 2014.

The 2019 is currently flat, as the January‘s market improvement with 369.159 units sold (+2.5%), was eroded by the February‘s negative performance with sales at 468.709 (-1.1%). Indeed, year-to-date sales were 876.660 (+0.6%).

Market Outlook

After the recent years’ sales fluctuations, the Japanese car market is still seen uncertain in the 2019-2025 period of time. Indeed, a planned sales tax hike in October is expected to hit growth by the end of the 2019, while an uncertain global trade outlook will dent the all-important external sector. The evolution towards new “green” engines will further evolve the industry mix and the rules of key-cars could be totally revised.

Being interested to know more, give a look at this updated research. Clicking on the picture, you can see contents.

Competitive Arena

Considering only the car passenger’s (including kei-cars) segment, the competitive landscape in February is, of course, dominated by Toyota, with year-to-date sales at 246.553 (+0.1%).

Honda is second with 130.859 registrations (+4.5%) followed by Suzuki with 124.065 (+6.3%), Daihatsu with 117.136 (+13.2%), Nissan with 113.596 (-5.9%), Mazda with 36.533 (+0.4%), Subaru with 19.426 sales (-24.5%), Mitsubishi with 18.505 units (+8.5%) and Isuzu with 11.735 sales (+7.3%).

At model level, the market leader is the Honda N-Box with 39.583 sales (-4.2%), followed by the Suzuki Spacia with 30.175 (+25.6%) and the Daihatsu Tanto with 28.286 (+13%).

In the regular car ranking, the Nissan Note is the best-selling model with 24.358 (-7.1%) units sold.

As Annual Member you could have access to the top-selling car ranking in the dedicated section.

Rank 2019Rank 2018BrandsSales YTDSales Feb'+/- YTD'+/- FebShare YTDShare Feb
11Toyota246.553134.6310,1%1,8%27,8%28,1%
22Honda130.85969.5114,5%1,1%14,7%14,5%
33Suzuki124.06566.2896,3%4,7%14,0%13,8%
44Daihatsu117.13661.88113,2%5,1%13,2%12,9%
55Nissan113.59660.306-5,9%-6,3%12,8%12,6%
66Mazda36.53319.9260,4%6,5%4,1%4,2%
77Subaru19.42612.079-24,5%-11,3%2,2%2,5%
88Mitsubishi18.50510.0058,1%6,5%2,1%2,1%
99Isuzu11.7356.7487,3%10,6%1,3%1,4%
1012Lexus11.3345.479-10,2%-11,2%1,3%1,1%
1110Hino10.9986.1808,3%11,2%1,2%1,3%
1211Mercedes9.5465.1452,2%1,5%1,1%1,1%
1313Volkswagen6.8033.9840,9%1,0%0,8%0,8%
1414BMW5.8243.6473,7%0,5%0,7%0,8%
1515Mitsubishi Fuso5.4382.977-5,8%-7,9%0,6%0,6%
1617Mini3.2131.9322,5%-1,0%0,4%0,4%
1718Volvo2.5431.38710,2%6,4%0,3%0,3%
1816Audi2.3791.330-35,2%-38,6%0,3%0,3%
1921Peugeot1.4978244,0%7,0%0,2%0,2%
2020UD Trucks1.41995029,4%42,9%0,2%0,2%
2119Jeep1.347670-10,4%-20,1%0,2%0,1%
2222Renault1.1456420,9%-0,3%0,1%0,1%
2324Fiat89550623,6%19,9%0,1%0,1%
2423Porsche890503-6,4%9,1%0,1%0,1%
2525Land Rover68941458,4%41,3%0,1%0,1%
2630Smart511172171,8%168,8%0,1%0,0%
2727Jaguar504303110,0%67,4%0,1%0,1%
2826Citroen47828255,2%80,8%0,1%0,1%
2928Abarth428229185,3%52,7%
3029Alfa Romeo35118910,7%0,0%
3131Maserati14081-11,4%-12,0%
3233Ferrari135777,1%26,2%
3334DS955363,8%47,2%
3432Chevrolet9450-19,0%-23,1%
3535Cadillac80362,6%-21,7%
3637Ford785020,0%56,3%
3736Lamborghini7148-23,7%-21,3%
3838Bentley603681,8%125,0%
3939Dodge453012,5%25,0%
4042Scania4231147,1%520,0%
4045McLaren422427,3%84,6%

Rank 2019Rank 2018GroupsSales YTDSales Feb'+/- YTD'+/- FebShare YTDShare Feb
11Toyota Group386.021208.1713,6%2,6%44,0%44,4%
23Renault Nissan Alliance133.24670.953-4,1%-4,6%15,2%15,1%
32Honda Motor130.85969.5114,5%1,1%14,9%14,8%
44Suzuki113.07055.294-3,1%-12,7%12,9%11,8%
55Mazda36.53319.9260,4%6,5%4,2%4,3%
66Subaru19.42612.079-24,5%-11,3%2,2%2,6%
77Mercedes Daimler15.4958.2941,3%-0,9%1,8%1,8%
810Isuzu Motors11.7356.7487,3%10,6%1,3%1,4%
98Volkswagen Group10.2455.932-11,0%-10,9%1,2%1,3%
109BMW9.0945.6033,0%-0,2%1,0%1,2%

Rank F.Y. 2018Rank 2019ModelsSales 2019 YTDSales FebruarySales YTD +/-Sales February +/-
11Honda N-Box39.58320.391-4,2%-0,6%
22Suzuki Spacia30.17515.82525,6%38,0%
43Daihatsu Tanto28.28615.16113,0%8,2%
34Nissan Dayz28.08014.539-3,6%-8,8%
55Nissan Note24.35812.910-7,1%-8,0%
66Daihatsu Move22.73212.374-8,4%-8,7%
117Nissan Serena21.04310.93315,4%29,2%
88Toyota Prius20.57911.867-0,9%-6,0%
79Toyota Aqua20.15011.2751,2%1,5%
1010Daihatsu Mira19.27210.09524,3%22,4%
1211Toyota Sienta17.5678.96717,0%29,6%
912Suzuki WagonR16.5559.133-23,1%-26,3%
1313Toyota Voxy16.3569.1255,6%-0,7%
2314Nissan Trucks Small16.3539.9630,0%0,0%
1915Honda Freed14.8148.1154,4%10,7%
1716Daihatsu Mira e:S14.4887.2440,0%0,0%
1517Toyota Corolla14.2047.64223,7%25,9%
1818Toyota Roomy13.5647.0750,7%-1,9%
1619Toyota Vitz13.0497.7616,5%3,1%
2820Daihatsu Hijet Cargo13.0106.7640,0%0,0%
2121Suzuki Alto12.6126.950-2,8%-3,0%
2022Toyota 180 Series12.3178.5070,0%0,0%
1423Honda Fit12.2976.661-20,2%-19,6%
2424Daihatsu Hijet Track12.1456.2970,0%0,0%
3425Toyota Alphard11.5595.65157,4%112,0%
2526Toyota Tank11.2725.859-2,9%-4,0%
2627Suzuki Hustler10.7065.191-0,1%7,9%
3128Honda Vezel10.4595.90512,5%33,5%
3329Suzuki Every Van10.4185.5250,0%0,0%
2230Toyota C-HR10.4126.085-20,6%-21,2%

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