NISSAN NORTH AMERICA +15%
Nissan slightly underperformed the industry but was still able to hang on to fifth place, staying ahead of the surging Koreans.
Nissan couldn't quite keep up with the market overall, despite the addition of the Juke, and big gains for the Versa (+47%), the Rogue (+72%), and the Sentra (+27%). The Altima slipped (-12%), but still outsold the Honda Accord.
No wild gyrations for Infiniti, whose performance was bracketed by the QX56 (+18%) on the high end and the EX35 (-15%) on the low end.
It was another market-share-stealing month for Hyundai-Kia. Hyundai +22% The new Sonata is still on fire (+150%), but the new Elantra (+26%) is less so. The Santa Fe (-39%) was Hyundai's underachiever.
Boom-and-bust Kia was mostly boom in January, particularly the Sportage (sales up by a factor of 4), and the Soul (+149%). In the bust category, we have the departing Rondo and Borrego, as well as the Rio (-60%).
VOLKSWAGEN GROUP +7%
Volkswagen's modest increase trailed the industry.
The redesigned Jetta (+29%) and Golf (+30%) were in the plus column, but VW was dragged down by collapsing sales of the New Beetle (-88%).
Even with its biggest-volume model, the A4, off 10%, Audi had a good month, on the strength of the Q5 (+51%), the Q7 (+60%), the A3 (+53%), and the new A8. Bentley -4%
SUBARU OF AMERICA +21%
Subaru starts off the year by elbowing past both Mazda and the BMW Group. The Impreza (+34%) had another good month, but the Outback (+28%) has become the brand's biggest seller.