Only two SUVs made the list of the UK's top ten best-selling cars of 2020.
For the 39th consecutive year, the Ford F-Series pickup was America's best-selling model in 2020, while SUVs and crossovers made up the majority of the top ten best selling cars in the US last year. It's a different story in the UK, however, where market needs are very different.
Unlike the US, not a single pickup truck made the list of the UK's top ten best-selling models. Like the US, however, the UK's top seller in 2020 was also a Ford. For the 12th year in a row, the Fiesta Hatchback took the crown as the UK's best-selling car with 49,174 units sold last year, despite getting a price increase in 2019. Since Ford is focusing on SUVs and crossovers in the US, the Fiesta has been discontinued since the 2019 model year along with every other passenger car apart from the Mustang.
Unlike in the US, there's still a huge demand for compact hatchbacks and superminis. With 46,439 units sold, the Vauxhall Corsa was the UK's second best-selling car in the UK, followed by the Volkswagen Golf with 43,109 units sold. While the Volkswagen Golf is sold in the US, it wasn't one of the top ten best-selling models. For the current-generation, Volkswagen also only sells the high-performance GTI and R variants.
Falling behind the Golf was its main rival, the Ford Focus (39,372 units), which was discontinued in the US at the same time as the Fiesta. Rounding off the UK's top-selling cars of 2020 was the Mercedes-Benz A-Class (37,608), Mini Hatchback (31,233), Volkswagen Polo (26,965), Ford Puma (26,294 units), and Volvo XC40 (25,023). The latter two entries were the only SUVs on the list, while the Puma's sales performance is impressive considering it's only been on sale for the 2021 model year.
"I want to thank our customers for continuing to show their confidence and trust in the Ford brand in what was an unprecedented difficult year," said Lisa Brankin, managing director, Ford of Britain and Ireland. "The new lockdown measures announced earlier this week mean there will be a slow start to the much-needed recovery in the new vehicle sales market as we begin 2021, though thankfully the UK-EU and UK-Turkey trade agreements signed just ahead of the new year have avoided an even worse potential situation."
"We hope that the current circumstances will have changed enough by the all-important March sales month to help give the industry the kick-start it needs. We will be playing our part by keeping up our new vehicle momentum at Ford, bringing to market exciting new products like the all-electric Mustang Mach-E which we'll see on our roads in the next few months."