Last month Fiat sold 71.333 cars in Brazil. It means the brand keeps its pole position with sales up 7.6% compared to Nov/11. It is also good from the point of view of market share that rises up to 24.02%, 3.23 points ahead of VW. All of that was possible thanks to higher passenger sales registrations (+10.3%) and due to the fall of total market (-9.1%). However there are some things that did not go that good such as Fiat Uno and LCV’s registrations. From Fiat’s total, 82% corresponded to passenger cars while LCV lost market share (last year they counted for 20% vs. 18% last month). Nonetheless Fiat is the leader in both segments: 25.16% of share in passenger segment (2.56 points ahead of VW), and 19.89% in LCV segment (5.62 points ahead of VW). Fiat continues to grow in a relatively stable market despite the arrival of more competitors with really interesting products. It is good but does not tell anything about coming months, which will be very difficult not in terms of economic forecasts but in terms of competition. For the first time last month Hyundai was part of top 10 best-selling passenger cars brands surpassing Honda, Toyota, Nissan and Citroen. That’s certainly an amazing result that shows how far Koreans can go and what their plans for Brazil are. The reason for that growth is the introduction of the B-Segment HB20, an interesting subcompact hatchback that will be a headache for Fiat Palio’s sales in 2013. The problem is that no all-new Fiat is planned to arrive in the next months, so Fiat could begin to feel the presence of the Korean.
Fiat did better than VW. Last year 6.161 units separated them. Last month Fiat was ahead of VW with 9.589 cars. Fiat increased its registration 7%, while VW is up 3%, and GM, third largest Brazilian car maker, is down 8%. The arrival of Hyundai has had a direct impact on Ford and Renault, down 11% and 19%, while the Korean is up a massive 33%. For Passenger cars only, Fiat is up 10%, VW +4%, GM -8%, Ford -19%, Renault -31% and Hyundai +62%! The new HB20 is catching Renault Sandero and Ford Fiesta’s sales while Gol and Palio one’s don’t suffer yet. But the arrival and success of the locally made Hyundai is not the unique event. Fiat’s top seller, the Uno, continues to slow down while the Palio is really close in terms of units sold. In November the small Fiat is down 19% and the Palio is up 78%. If a close analysis is made, Uno’s decrease is not due to spectacular increases of its rivals. It means that maybe there is cannibalism between the Uno and Palio. They belong to different segments but cheapest Palios may be catching sales from expensive Unos. However the Uno continues to be Brazil’s second best-selling car and a very important product for Fiat, but something must be done in order to stop the fall (a restyling should arrive next year). Other products did quite well: the Siena (+63%) and the Punto (+18%), but not the Strada, down 0.6%. At the end there is more positive than negative news coming from Fiat Brazil, though it does not mean that more must be done and new products should arrive. One of them should be a small SUV, in process at Centro Stile in Turin, to gain market share in this segment which will have a big growth in the coming years.