Leading car models in Europe by units sold 2021
European Manufacturers Dominate the Traditional Car MarketMost of the 15 best-selling models in Europe came from European automakers, with the Toyota Yaris and Ford Fiesta the only non-European models to enter the ranking. The region is home to some of the world’s largest automotive manufacturers, such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW—which ranked across sectors among the most valuable brands worldwide in 2021— and the Volkswagen Group—one of the global market leaders in sales volume. While European car manufacturers were the most popular in the region, their production and sales volume faced challenges brought on by the global automotive semiconductor shortage. Production halts in the region are expected to impact automotive companies' global profit as around seven million vehicles were forecast to be cut from worldwide production.
European Brands Are Behind on Electric Vehicle Sales in the RegionThe European best-sellers were mostly traditional vehicles with internal combustion engines. In contrast, there have been increasing regional efforts to set zero-emission goals for passenger car emissions. In June 2022, the European Union parliament approved a ban on new fossil-fuel cars from 2035, and the United Kingdom has made similar commitments. European brands faced steep competition in the electric vehicle market. Tesla was the European market leader for plug-in electric vehicles in the first half of 2022. The Model Y reported over 45,200 sales, followed by the Model 3.
In contrast, Asian brands were the most popular in the European Union for new hybrid vehicles, with five Toyota models sharing the top five. However, European brands met more international success with their electric models. In the first seven months of 2022, Volkswagen, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz were among the global best-selling plug-in electric vehicle brands.