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Volvo Car UK proved the strength in depth of its model range and its service to customers by increasing its share of the UK new car market in 2020. Despite the unprecedented trading challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, the brand achieved a 2.85% share of the total market, a significant improvement on its 2019 performance of 2.43%. Although volume was down, with 46,408 cars sold, the reduction was significantly less than the 29.4% decline recorded by the UK market as a whole. Volvo remains one of the fastest-growing premium car brands in the country, with its most popular model, the XC40, achieving the status of the UK’s best-selling premium SUV, with 25,023 sales in 2020. It was also the 10th best-selling car of all in the UK in 2020. Completing an all-SUV top three, Volvo’s next best-sellers were the mid-size XC60, with 8,235 sales, and the large XC90, with 5,270.
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The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has regained the top spot in the European plug-in hybrid sales charts with registrations across Europe from January to the end of October 2020 topping 22,262 (Source: Jato), over 1,000 units ahead of its nearest rival. With competition heating up and demand from PHEVS across Europe growing, the Mitsubishi Outlander’s reputation for reliability and efficiency still holds sway in the segment it effectively established since it launched the first generation Outlander PHEV in 2014. In the UK, sales of PHEVs have now topped 58,000 so far in 2020 with Outlander topping the SUV PHEV charts and still on the podium across all plug-in hybrid competitors, with 3,294 sales.
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Bentley Motors is announcing today full details of the new Bentayga Speed – the pinnacle of the Bentayga family – effortless performance, yet no compromise on luxury. Hand-built at Crewe, the Bentayga Speed combines the W12 powertrain and many of the models luxurious features as standard, including the Mulliner Driving Specification. Building on a long tradition of Speed models that was born with the Continental GT in 2007, the new Bentayga Speed maintains the performance credentials proved by its predecessor, which claimed the production SUV record at the grueling Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in 2018.
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Mitsubishi Motors in the UK has appointed David Rodriguez as its new Sales and Marketing Director. Mr. Rodriguez joined the business on June 1 and brings with him nearly two decades of invaluable industry experience to the role. Having worked for 11 years in a variety of senior roles at the Ford Motor Company and Mazda Motors UK, across their Sales, Operations, and Finance functions, David joined leading fleet-management company LeasePlan UK as Dealer Engagement General Manager, and in 2016 was promoted to Head of Remarketing with the role being extended to Head of Procurement and Remarketing by 2019.
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Volvo Cars sold 44,830 cars in May, down 25.5 per cent compared with the same month last year, as sales and showroom traffic trends in Europe improved and sales in China continued to grow. In the US, sales recovered quicker than expected as more states loosened restrictions put in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. In the January-to-May period, Volvo Cars’ global sales reached 208,479 cars, down 25.0 per cent compared with the same period last year.
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The UK’s used car market declined by -8.3% in the first quarter of 2020, according to the latest figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Growth in January and February, up 2.9% and 4.0% respectively, was wiped out by a -30.7% fall in March, making it the lowest March on record as coronavirus lockdown measures that came into effect partway through the month closed retailers.
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South West retailers have topped PEUGEOT’s Guild of Gold Lion programme, which recognises the best Retailers, Sales Managers and Aftersales personnel within the PEUGEOT Network in 2019, at an awards ceremony held at The Grove Hotel in Hertfordshire. This year’s Guild of Gold Lion programme saw the top 25 Retailers in PEUGEOT’s 183- strong UK Retailer Network awarded the Guild of Gold Lion award – with each of the recognised Retailers picking up a plaque commemorating their achievement.
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On its way to series maturity, the BMW iNEXT is completing a further chapter of its overall vehicle testing under particularly demanding conditions. Intensive test runs in the freezing cold at the polar circle are now being followed by a contrasting program in the Kalahari in Southern Africa, where in addition to extreme heat and solar radiation, permanent dust formation and off-road terrain with its sand, pebble and gravel tracks pose exceptional challenges for the BMW Group’s technology flagship. In this literally hot phase of the series development process, not only do the drive and suspension components of the BMW iNEXT, a car designed for all-electric mobility, provide proof of their functional safety, durability and reliability, but also the car’s bodywork, interior, driver assistance systems and digitalisation technology.
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The Volkswagen Polo has been invigorated with the addition of a Match trim level, adding a host of extra equipment over the award-winning Polo SE which it replaces, with only a minor revision in price. Replacing the second-tier SE trim in the Polo range, Match adds 15-inch ‘Seyene’ alloy wheels, front fog lights, rear tinted-windows, and front and rear parking sensors – equipment which, if specified as options on the Polo SE, would cost £980.
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Roads considered challenging enough to be a test of mettle for thoroughbred competition cars on the Azores rally have been chosen to provide a baptism of fire for the quattro system underpinning the all-new Audi A3. Journalists have been able to assess the dynamic capabilities of all-wheel-drive versions of the advanced new compact hatchback on these roads, which snake around the island of São Miguel in Portugal’s Azores archipelago, ahead of the car’s world public debut at next month’s Geneva Motor Show.
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