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The 10 Most Popular Car Brands in the UK

The automotive market in the UK has been through something of a rough patch in recent times, with overall car sales slumping from around 2.3 million in 2019 to just over 1.6 million in 2020, according to the SMMT. With the country’s economy gradually grinding back into life, however, there’s reason to be bullish about car sales in the UK.

Certain brands stand out as especially popular, according to registration data from December 2020.


The Ford Motor Company is synonymous with the motoring industry as a whole, ever since the launch of the famous Model T. Today, you’ll struggle to find a town in the UK which lacks a Ford dealership, and the Fiesta and Focus are ever-present on British roads.


Marginally less popular than Ford is Volkswagen, whose Golf and Polo offer exceptional quality at the bottom of the market.


For executives looking for a quality driving experience, it’s difficult to beat the famous 3 series from BMW.


Much like BMW, Mercedes-Benz has cemented itself as being associated with quality German engineering and craftsmanship, which is partly what makes it so preferred among wealthy executives.


Rounding off German dominance of the top-five is Audi, whose market is similar to that of BMW and Mercedes Benz. It remains to be seen what impact Brexit will have on the strong German showing in this list.


Vauxhall have put the pressure on Ford in recent years at the very bottom of the market, with the new Corsa pushing the Fiesta out to become bestselling car in the country for the first time in what feels like forever. The new Vauxhall Corsa-E’s price is sure to lift its appeal into the new electric age, too.


Toyota’s Yaris was the second biggest car in July 2021, with just over three-thousand units shifted. Where Toyota will be especially optimistic is the electric vehicle market, where their experience with the Prius gives them special advantages.


The Qashqai is among the best-selling SUVs in the UK, with its combination of performance, chunky frame, and uniquely curvaceous look all adding to the appeal.


Kia’s output, for the most part, is aimed squarely at those looking to economise. But models like the Sportage provide plenty of performance for the money, too; with a new model on sale later in the year, Kia will hope to continue their strong run of form.


There was a time not so long ago when the word ‘Skoda’ was synonymous with a lack of quality. But the Czech brand’s resurgence under the Volkswagen group is now well and truly complete, with the Octavia and Fabia both providing respectable driving experiences.