SEAT's global sales grew in the first quarter of 2018 to reach the highest volume in the 68 year history of the brand, with 139,200 vehicles delivered globally a rise in sales of 18.7% from January to March 2018.
2018 Jan-March Sales for SEAT Ireland are also on the rise, up a significant 5.2% in a total market which is back -5.5%, resulting in a strong market share of 2.8% year to date, compared to 2.5% in 2017. The brand-new SEAT Ibiza remains SEAT’s best-selling model in the Irish market accounting for just over a quarter of overall sales. The Ibiza is followed closely by the SEAT Ateca which is up 9.3% for the first three months of 2018.
Meanwhile, the SEAT Leon continues to be a favourite amongst Irish consumers helped by the arrival of the facelifted model in 2017. Most impressive however is the phenomenal start the all new SEAT Arona has enjoyed in the Irish market. The latest addition to the growing SEAT range is responsible for 18% of SEATs overall volume, a huge success for a model that is brand new to the Irish market, selling almost 400 units to date.
Niall Phillips, Brand Director at SEAT Ireland commented, “The immensely successful start to 2018 is a testament to the hard work and planning of our team, our excellent and expanding dealer network and our commitment to offering high quality products at affordable prices. The current SEAT product range is the most advanced in the history of the brand and this tremendous start now puts us in an excellent position as we continue upon a busy and exciting 2018.”
SEAT also set another record in March – the highest global sales figures in a single month. In March alone dealers sold 60,400 vehicles which is 13.4% more than in 2017, and for the first time broke the barrier of 60,000 car deliveries in one month. The previous record dates back to March of 2000 (56,200 units).
SEAT Vice-President for Sales and Marketing Wayne Griffiths pointed out that “We are very happy for having broken a record that has stood for nearly 20 years. SEAT is now in the strongest position in its history and doesn’t intend to stop here. Our current range has the potential to keep growing and there are several opportunities in the markets where we are operating. At the same time, we are getting ready to expand the range and add new models, such as the SEAT Tarraco and the CUPRA Ateca, which we will be launching at the end of this year. We got off to a great fast start this year; nonetheless we are facing big challenges, like in particular the implementation of WLTP.”
The success of the models in the SEAT range is leading to higher production. In this sense, in the months of April and May the Martorell factory is adding ten additional weekend production shifts on Line 1 (Ibiza and Arona) and seven on Line 2 (Leon), as well as four shifts on Line 3 (Audi Q3).
One new model every six months until 2020
The sales volume reached in the first quarter of 2018 is the result of launching the Ateca, the Leon, the Ibiza and the Arona in the last two years. SEAT is now preparing to add one new model to its range every six months between 2018 and 2020. The first two will be the SEAT Tarraco and the CUPRA Ateca, which are going on sale at the end of this year.