Toyota, Hyundai and Volkswagen lose ground in California sales

<i>This post has been corrected. See the note below for details.</i>

Korean automakers, Toyota and Volkswagen all had a rough time with the California auto market last year.

Hyundai experienced the biggest market-share slide of any auto brand, according to the California New Car Dealers Assn. The South Korean automaker’s share of the Golden State’s car market slipped to 3.9% from 4.6%.

Corporate sibling Kia fell to 3.4% from 3.7%. Combined, the Koreans lost a full percentage point of market share in California last year.

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Although market leader Toyota’s sales continue to rise, other brands are starting to catch up. Toyota’s share of the California market dipped from a dominating 19.1% to a still-impressive 18.5%. Second-place Honda is still far behind at 12.1%, unchanged from the previous year.

Volkswagen was the third-biggest loser in market share, falling to 3.4% from 3.9%.

VW, Hyundai and Kia sales were all hurt by a lack of new models.

Subaru was the biggest gainer. Its share of the market rose to 2.5% from 1.9%.


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Tesla, which ramped up production of its Model S electric sedan during the past year, now accounts for 0.5% of the California market. That’s the same as Buick and Land Rover and almost as big as Chrysler.

Ford is the fastest-growing domestic brand in the state. It now has a 10.8% share, up from 10.4% in the prior year. Chevrolet is growing nearly as quickly and now has 7.4% of the market, up from just over 7% a year ago.

Automakers sold 1.7-million cars in California last year, an 11.9% gain from the prior year. Nationally, auto sales rose 7.6% last year, according to Autodata Corp.

[For The Record, 7:51 a.m. PST Feb. 18: An earlier version of this post stated that Tesla has 5% of the California market, according to the California New Car Dealers Assn. The company has a 0.5% share of the state’s market, the group said.]


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