We have Brake-O-Rama News! The world’s most popular cars: a new champ! Our mechanics at Brake-O-Rama Lodi New Jersey search the internet for the best information to share with our customers. This is a great article we found to help NEW JERSEY customers make smart decisions on buying a new automobile.
By Joann Muller | Forbes.com
The Ford Focus isn’t the best-selling car in America; it’s not even in the Top 10. But around the world, especially in fast-growing markets in Asia, the sporty compact is growing in popularity, so much so that it is about to knock off the venerable Toyota Corolla as the world’s most popular car.
The Corolla’s no slouch, either. LMC forecasts sales of approximately 966,000 Corollas in 2012, one reason Toyota Motor is poised to recapture the title of world’s biggest automaker this year after ceding leadership to General Motors in 2011. GM is now vying with Volkswagen for second place.
It’s been a record year for the auto industry, with global sales expected to top 80 million cars and trucks. Although European sales have been weak and China has slowed a bit, sales in the U.S. market have been robust, fed by pent-up demand. Analysts are forecasting U.S. sales of about 14.5 million units.
When it comes to crowning the best-selling cars, though, China, now the world’s largest automotive market, has the most clout. And in 2012, Ford and Toyota saw very different outcomes there. Ford has been investing heavily in China, and the Focus is one of 15 new models being introduced there over the next few years. Meanwhile, a long-simmering territorial dispute between Japan and China sparked a boycott of Japanese cars by Chinese consumers in the latter half of the year. As a result, Toyota’s sales in China fell about 25 percent below expectations.
All but one of the 10 most popular cars in the world are small, fuel-efficient compacts, which are popular in Europe, Asia and developing countries where affordability is an issue.
Ford has built its global strategy around a handful of cars that sell in large numbers around the world. The Focus compact is the best example. LMC Automotive says Ford will sell an estimated one million of them worldwide in 2012, including about 250,000 in the U.S. It’s enough to unseat the Toyota Corolla as the best-selling car in the world.
The Corolla has been the most popular car on the planet, but in 2012, a long-simmering territorial dispute between Japan and China sparked protests in China, the world’s largest automotive market, and led to a boycott of Japanese products, including cars. Toyota’s sales in China fell about 25 percent below expectations. Thanks to strong sales elsewhere, however, the Corolla still ranked second globally, with estimated sales of 966,000
The Jetta (sold as the Vento or the Bora in certain markets) is Volkswagen’s best-selling model worldwide, thanks to its acceptance in the U.S. and in China, two markets that are crucial to the German carmaker’s plan to dominate the global industry by 2018. Through November, VW sold about 8.3 million vehicles worldwide. Jetta sales for the year are expected to hit 822,000.
Hyundai of Korea has been growing by leaps and bounds around the world and gaining respect along the way. Its compact Elantra (sold in Korea as the Avante) is now the fourth most-popular car in the world. LMC Automotive forecasts sales of 777,000 for 2012.
The subcompact Ford Fiesta isn’t a huge seller in the U.S. — about 55,000 units a year — but it’s very popular in Europe and is growing in China, where Ford is making a big market push. That’s why it ranks as the fifth most popular car in the world. LMC Automotive projects 2012 sales of 728,000.
The popular Golf hatchback is another reason Volkswagen sales have been climbing globally. Though less popular in the U.S. than the Jetta or the mid-sized Passat, the Golf, including the TDI diesel, is one of Volkswagen’s best-selling vehicles. LMC Automotive projects sales of about 726,000 for 2012.
The Camry is the only mid-sized car in the global Top 10, which is a testament to its comfortable ride and reliable performance. It is the best-selling car in America, and has been for years, selling about 400,000 a year. Worldwide, LMC Automotive projects Camry sales of about 705,000.
The Polo is a super-mini car that isn’t available in the U.S. But it’s immensely popular in Europe and other markets, where fuel is expensive and streets are crowded and narrow, which is why it’s in the global Top 10. LMC Automotive projects Polo sales of 704,000.