It should come as no surprise that 2020 was a bad year for selling cars. With car showrooms shuttered for large parts of the year, factories shutting down for several weeks and the financial situations of money thrown into doubt, annual sales plunged in Europe by 23.7 per cent.
Sports cars were more affected than most other vehicles, though, as shown in these bleak Tweets from Car Industry Analysis. The C-Sports segment, for instance, saw sales take a 70 per cent nosedive. The MX-5 is the clear leader in the dwindling field with 4727 units sold across Europe, 67 per cent fewer than Mazda managed in 2019.
The D-Sports segment meanwhile suffered a 33 per cent drop across coupes, convertibles and pony cars. The BMW Z4 seems to be the big winner of the lot, with sales of 8268 units representing a reasonably modest drop of 19 per cent. The Porsche 718s did well too, managing well over 3000 sales apiece. No doubt helped by the arrival of the GTS derivatives, Boxster sales dipped only 14 per cent, while Cayman sales went down by nine per cent.
The news further down the charts is less rosy. Demand for the Alpine A110, one of 2019’s sports car sales success stories, crashed by 70 per cent to 1329 units. We should spare a thought for the Aston Martin Vantage - only 324 coupes were sold, a decline of 67 per cent. It’s no wonder Gaydon announced it was cutting back on sports car production a few months back.
Last year an updated Jaguar F-Type arrived, which is perhaps why the British sports car’s sales dipped by ‘only’ 21 per cent for the coupe and 20 per cent for the convertible. The volumes are still pretty small though, with 2735 sold across both body styles.
In 2020 Audi TT topped the D-Sport Coupe segment once again with 5518 sold, although that’s 36 per cent worse than 2019. With that kind of performance, Audi is unlikely to change its mind regarding the TT’s future - as a reminder, the next one will be an electric crossover. Sorry.
Heinous though that decision might be, we get it - SUVs and crossovers are what people want right now. In stark contrast to sports car sales figures in 2020, as bad as it got for the high-riders was a 23 per cent fall for the ever-more crowded C-SUV segment. The posh E-SUV category - home to the likes of the Range Rover Sport, Porsche Cayenne and BMW X5 - only lost 8 per cent relative to 2019.
The more exotic end of the two-door market wasn’t hit as hard, at least. Car Industry Analysis hasn’t released comparative charts for the supercar segment yet, although we do know that the Porsche 911 had a great year considering you know what, with sales sliding by only around five per cent. Ferrari deliveries meanwhile were down only about 10 per cent.