The most popular cars across the world

Ford has dominated car sales in the UK since at least the 1970s, largely with cars built in British factories. But what about the rest of the world – do they cherish their domestic manufacturers as much as we do?

Generally, yes. As this selection demonstrates, countries tend to stick to what they know. These are some of the major car markets around the world, and the most popular vehicles by new sales.

This information comes from a blog called Featuring fewer glamorous machines than some of the more famous sites, this great little resource provides unique insight into the global car market.


United Kingdom – Ford Fiesta

109,265 Fiestas were sold in the UK in 2012. This is nearly 20,000 more than its nearest competition, the Vauxhall Corsa. Ford’s Fiesta has topped the leader-board since 2009 (when it overtook the Focus for the first time in a decade), and has remained popular ever since. In March alone, Ford sold 22,748 Fiestas.


France – Peugeot 208

The Peugeot 208 is a well-regarded replacement for the not-so-well-regarded 207 (which still sold remarkably well in France and around Europe). Quirky adverts aside, this small and inexpensive car reflects the needs of the French domestic market well.


Germany – VW Golf

This sensible hatchback was the second car of choice for the British middle class a few years ago. It has been prominent in its class for decades now, losing out in European markets to competition from cheaper (but just as good) brands.


Spain – Seat Ibiza

Spain’s ailing economy has been badly affecting car sales. The Opel Corsa – known as a Vauxhall in this country – is the most popular car by news sales in Spain in March. It takes the title with just 3,216 sales. The VW Polo was in pole position in Spain the previous month, and in January low-cost manufacturer Dacia topped the lead tables.


Italy – Fiat Panda

The quaint little Fiat Panda has been a mainstay of European peasant life since it was first introduced in 1980. One of its defining features was that it was available in 4×4 (which originally used a simple viscous coupling to engage four-wheel drive, rather than complex electronics) making it suitable for the Alpine terrain of Northern Italy.


USA – Ford F-series

The vast trucks that roam America’s highways make no sense on European roads, so we rarely encounter them in real life. This series is over two metres wide, up to 6.3m long and stands at nearly two metres tall. The largest engine available is a 6.2l V8.

The USA’s automotive industry matches the F-series’ engines when it comes to enormity. Only this table really does the numbers justice.


China – VW Lavida

Never heard of a Lavida? That’s because it’s manufactured by the Shanghai arm of the German firm, specifically for the Chinese market. It had a uniquely dull design but has been updated (in line with contemporary VW styling) since the Beijing Auto Show last year. 38,334 sales is a drop in the ocean compared to China’s vast population.


Australia – Mazda3

Holden, specifically the Holden Commodore, has dominated the Australian automobile scene since the firm first started making cars in the country just after the Second World War. In an historic fall from prominence, Holden now trails behind the big Japanese manufacturers – the Mazda3 is trailed by Toyota’s Corolla and Hilux.


South Africa – Toyota Hilux

The indestructible truck comes into its own in South Africa’s rugged landscape. The roads are among the most deadly in the world, and the rural areas are completely wild. A big, durable truck like the Hilux will fare well. This year, though, it seems that Volkswagen is off to a flying start with its Polo Vivo. A very different vehicle indeed.


India – Maruti Alto

The Maruti Alto is the Indian-built version of Suzuki’s popular small hatchback. It boasts a 796cc engine, the natural gas version of which will deliver around 80mpg. The Alto is extremely popular under various badges all over Asia and around the world. In India, it retains its bestseller ranking.

So there we have it – some of the world’s most popular cars.    If your car insurance is up for renewal this Spring, then you should check out Car Insurance offers from More Th>n. If you own one of the cars on this list, or think yours should be on it, let us know in the comments below!


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One thought on "The most popular cars across the world"

  • Skylo says:

    I live in Australia and I am surprised to see the mazda as the top dog.Holden is closing its doors in australia in 2017.

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