The biggest winners and losers in car sales in the first quarter of 2024

By | April 4, 2024

The biggest sales winners (and losers) in the first quarter of 2024 Car and driver

The first three months of 2024 have flown by and as the first quarter of the year comes to a close, we’re diving deep into the numbers to see which car models and car manufacturers came out on top. We’ll update our list of the 25 best-selling cars, trucks, and SUVs when all the information is available, but here we pull out some of the most interesting details we found when going through the sales reports, picking out the biggest winners of Q1, along with a few models and brands that should turn this around in the second quarter of 2024.

The first three months of 2024 have flown by. As the first quarter of the year comes to an end, we’re taking a deep dive into the numbers to see which car models and car manufacturers came out on top. We’ll update our list of the 25 best-selling cars, trucks, and SUVs when all the information is available, but here we pull out some of the most interesting details we found when going through the sales reports, picking out the biggest winners of Q1, along with a few models and brands that should turn this around in the second quarter of 2024.

Winner: Subcompact SUVs

The smallest crossovers proved popular in the first few months of 2024. After entering the scene last year, the second-generation Chevrolet Trax continued its rejuvenation with 37,588 sales in the first quarter of 2024, while the Honda HR V saw a turnover of 44 percent. jumped year-over-year with 38,062 units sold. The Mazda CX-30 and Toyota Corolla Cross also impressed with 28,496 and 19,028 units sold respectively, an increase of 43 and 31 percent. Customers seem to be hungry for more affordable transportation at a time when the cost of living is constantly rising.

2023 Honda HRV2023 Honda HRV

honda

Winner: BMW X1

BMW launched a new, sharply styled X1 for 2023, which led to a 196 percent increase in sales last year to 21,042 units, the model’s best performance in four years. The small luxury crossover continued its strong performance in 2024, recording 6,012 sales, an increase of 90 percent compared to the same period last year.

2024 BMW x1 m35i xdrive2024 BMW x1 m35i xdrive

BMW

Winner: Lincoln

The Lincoln range had an incredible first quarter, with an overall increase of 32 percent. The biggest growth drivers were the brand’s smallest crossover, the Corsair (up 56 percent to 6,286 units) and the Nautilus (up 68 percent to 9,231 units). The Aviator also saw a 19 percent increase, with only the Navigator dropping out. With the revised 2024 Nautilus hitting dealer lots and the redesigned 2025 Aviator arriving later this year, Lincoln’s upward momentum could have potential.

2024 Lincoln Corsair2024 Lincoln Corsair

Michael Simari – car and driver

Winner: Volkswagen Hot Hatches

Despite a shaky infotainment interface, we love the driving dynamics of Volkswagen’s two hot hatches, so we’re happy to see sales of both sporty compact cars increase significantly in the first quarter. The GTI registered 2,412 units, up 156 percent from the same period in 2023, while the Golf R sold 1,233 units, up 125 percent. The GTI and Golf R will lose their manual transmission option after the 2024 model year, so we’ll see if sales of these enthusiast-oriented vehicles hold up once they go auto-only.

2022 Volkswagen Gti Slt2022 Volkswagen Gti Slt

Andi Hedrick – car and driver

Winner: Small Nissans

Along with the subcompact crossovers comes further evidence that buyers want cheaper vehicles, via Nissan’s smallest cars, the Versa and Sentra. The subcompact Versa sedan, which starts at just $17,530, saw sales jump 92 percent to 7,474 units. The $22,030 Sentra proved much more popular, with 40,081 units sold – a 78 percent increase in the first quarter of 2024.

2024 Nissan Sentra2024 Nissan Sentra

Nissan

Winner: Ford Maverick

Ford’s compact Maverick pickup has been around since 2022 but continues to gain popularity, becoming Ford’s fourth best-selling vehicle in the first quarter, just behind the Transit van. With 39,061 units sold, the Maverick was up 82 percent from the first quarter of 2023. Last year, Ford delivered 94,058 Mavericks, an increase of 27 percent from 2022. If Ford can maintain the same momentum for the rest of this year, 2024 might be a success. a new sales record.

2023 Ford Maverick Tremor2023 Ford Maverick Tremor

Ford

Loser: big trucks

While the smallest pickup in the US had a great start to 2024, sales of US full-size trucks slowed during the first quarter. Supply of the Ford F-series, which also includes the electric F-150 Lightning, fell by 10 percent to 152,943 units. The Lightning, however, saw an 80 percent jump to 7,743 units. Ram’s pickup line, which includes the light-duty 1500, fell 15 percent to 89,417 sales. Only the Chevrolet Silverado saw a slight increase to 129,987 units, but this 2 percent increase was driven by the heavy-duty models, while the light-duty Chevy had a 3 percent decline. Although the Toyota Tundra experienced an increase of 31 percent, with 36,215 units sold it is a small player in this segment.

2024 ford f150 lariat2024 ford f150 lariat

Ford

Loser: Ford Bronco

Ford saw several double-digit jumps, from the Maverick to the electric Mustang Mach-E and even the aging Edge. But the off-roader Bronco had a dismal opening to three months, with sales down 26 percent as Ford shifted 24,066 Broncos. Meanwhile, Jeep moved 38,308 Wranglers, up 1 percent from the first quarter of 2023. Sales of the Bronco through the entire 2023 calendar year also fell 10 percent, indicating waning interest in the boxy off-road SUV.

2021 ford bronco 23l black diamond2021 ford bronco 23l black diamond

Jessica Lynn Walker – car and driver

Loser: Mini

Mini has a range of updated models on the way, with both a new Cooper hatchback and a Countryman SUV arriving for 2025 with gas and electric powertrains. But as Mini waits for these new vehicles to hit dealerships, sales are taking a nosedive, with the brand down 13 percent overall. Mini’s bestseller, the Countryman, fell 24 percent; the two-door Cooper Hardtop dropped 10 percent, and the four-door variant saw a drop of 21 percent. Only the Cooper Convertible was in the green with an increase of 20 percent. The 2025 Cooper and Countryman can’t come soon enough.

2023 mini cooper hardtop front2023 mini cooper hardtop front

Mini

Loser: Audi gasoline SUVs

While sales of Audi’s electric SUVs continue an upward trend, sales of the German automaker’s gasoline-powered SUVs fell in the first quarter. The Q5 remained Audi’s bestseller, but fell by 33 percent to 11,473 units, while the Q7 fell by 35 percent and the Q8 by 37 percent. The only saving grace was the smallest member of Audi’s SUV range, as the Q3 rose a whopping 80 percent to 6926 units.

Rear Audi Q5 from 2024Rear Audi Q5 from 2024

Audi

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