It’s been a tough 12 months as the coronavirus pandemic caused misery for millions. And in the car industry, the economic hit has been massive, with dealers closed and many buyers holding off on big purchases while their jobs hang in the balance.
However, the UK government’s roadmap out of the pandemic lockdowns allows dealers will be to open their doors next week, meaning they won’t be relying on online sales. There are signs of hope, too, because last month sales were up 11.5 per cent – the first year-on-year increase since August.
Here, we highlight the 10 best-selling cars from March.
Vauxhall Corsa – 7,927
The Ford Fiesta has long been the best-selling car in the UK, but in the past year or so the Vauxhall Corsa has been threatening that crown.
Its stylish look and quality interior at a great value-for-money price has made it a massive hit with buyers, while an electric version makes it future-proof, too.
Ford Fiesta – 7,406
Close on the tail of the Corsa is the Fiesta, which continues to be a hit with buyers who’ve stuck with models they know well during the pandemic. It sells on the same values that make the Vauxhall so popular, so it’s no surprise it’s less than 1,000 sales behind in the year-to-date figures.
Expect the fight between these two desirable superminis to carry on throughout the year.
Mercedes-Benz A-Class – 7,012
Mercedes must consider the A-Class their biggest success story in the UK, with this entry point to the premium brand continuing to be a hot seller.
Until recently, the idea of owning one of the German firm’s cars seemed out of reach to most people, but the A-Class makes it more attainable without losing its quality values.
Tesla Model 3 – 6,585
When Tesla launched the Model 3, its goal was to make its range of cars more accessible to mainstream buyers. It looks like it has succeeded, because despite prices starting at about £43,000, it has held its own in the best-sellers list.
It’s probably been helped by the fact the American firm already had a strong online selling platform before the pandemic hit, but that doesn’t make its sales success any less impressive.
Nissan Qashqai – 6,583
Another model that’s made its place in the top 10 a regular thing, the Qashqai has established itself as the go-to family crossover.
The latest model has stylish looks, a decent interior and a range of efficient engines, cementing its place as a desirable SUV.
BMW 3 Series – 5,681
For fleet buyers in particular, there can be few better cars than the 3-Series. It has badge appeal, stylish looks and a driving style perfectly suited to those who travel long distances for their job. What’s more, it’s available as a saloon or estate, and with petrol, diesel and hybrid engines, so there’s something for everyone.
Volkswagen Golf – 5,194
If you want a car that does everything well, it has to be the Volkswagen Golf. The hatchback is practical enough for most, looks good and has a reputation for reliability. It’s not the most exciting car in the world, but for the vast majority of buyers, no matter what they’re looking for, the Golf will probably work for them. No wonder it always sells well.
Toyota Yaris – 4,910
The latest Toyota Yaris is at the forefront of the Japanese firm’s hybrid offensive, only being available with a 1.5-litre petrol-electric powertrain. This commitment to electrification appears to be working, if March’s figures are anything to go by.
Ford Puma – 4,886
When the Puma was first announced, enthusiasts were upset that the name of a cool old Ford sports car had been used for a small crossover. However, the small number of complaints will have fallen on deaf ears, as the Puma has been a sales hit for the American firm.
It’s based on the Fiesta, so you know it’ll be good, but it gets a higher driving position and improved practicality, making it arguably even more appealing.
Mini – 4,883
The Mini hatchback will always be a big seller, mixing fun styling with a premium interior and a relatively affordable price. In a year when many buyers are holding off on big purchases, a quality product with huge badge appeal but without a massive price tag is a very appealing prospect.