6 Feb 18

Rising stars of LatAm automobile industry

Although key automobile markets in Latin America such as Mexico and Colombia did not fare so well in 2017, many car models actually saw double and even triple digit increases in sales year-over-year thanks to good performances in Argentina, Chile, and Brazil.

While Argentina posted a 30% rise in new vehicle sales last year, Chile and Brazil reported increases of 18% and 10% respectively. Being impacted the most were SUVs, according to automotive research and data group Focus2Move. 

Jumping more than 9-fold to 50,140 units was South Korea’s Hyundai Creta. While it was ranked No. 157 in sales in 2016, it jumped 132 spots to hit No. 25 in 2017, showing the largest increase of any other vehicle in the region last year.

Built at Hyundai’s plant in the Brazilian city of Piracicaba, São Paulo state, the Creta comes in four versions.  They are the Attitude with a local MSRP of 76,350 reais (US$24,085), the Pulse which ranges from 81,000-90,000 reais, the Sport at 96,350 reais, and the Prestige which starts at nearly 103,000 reais.

Hyundai Creta (CREDIT: Hyundai)

Ranked second in terms of increasing in sales last year was the Jeep Compass which sold 46,615 units, nearly nine times more than in 2016. While the SUV was ranked No. 150 in 2016, it was positioned at No. 32 last year.

Other SUV’s making leaps in sales in 2017 were Nissan Kicks which rose 350% to 57,793 units (going from No. 89 to No. 18), Mazda CX-3 up 71% to 14,819 units (from No. 110 to No. 90), and Suzuki Vitara which saw its sales rise 54% to 12,459 units (rising 19 spots to No. 96).

Although less significant, a total of three small four-door cars showed year-on-year increases of at least 50% last year.

They were Chevrolet Cruz which was up 74% to 24,160 units (ranked No. 66), the Chevrolet Cruz Sedan up 70% to 17,845 units (No. 83), and the Volkswagen Voyage which saw a 59% increase to 49,445 units (No. 28).

Chevrolet Cruz (CREDIT: GM)

Meanwhile, two Fiat models fared quite well in 2017. While Toro pickup sales rose 53% to 61,411 units and was ranked No. 17, sales of the subcompact Mobi hatch jumped 159% to 70,082 units.

The latter, which was ranked No. 13, is the lowest priced model of the cars seeing the highest increase in sales last year.  It comes in four versions, being the Mobi Easy which has an MSRP of 34,560 reais, Like (40,890 reais), Flex (42,590 reais), and the Drive which ranges from 42,600 to 47,800 reais.

Fiat Mobi (CREDIT: Quatro Rodas)

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Authored by: Daniel Bland