The Brazilian new car market enjoyed a big spike in sales last month and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) also zoomed ahead, up 16.9% year-on-year after selling 20,455 passenger cars, albeit it did underperform the overall market's surge.
In total 148,904 new passenger cars were sold in Brazil during January, up more than twenty eight thousand units and 22.7% on the opening month of last year. FCA boosted its own sales by three thousand units last month when compared to its data for January 2017.
Those sales were down 10.7% month-on-month which was also a good result as it outperformed the total market which came in down 13.4% when January is compared to the previous month.
FCA was the third biggest passenger carmaking group in Brazil during January, GM took its usual place as the comfortable market leader, with 30,246 units sold, while VW rocketed its way into second place with 22,077 cars sold after its sales rise up by over a half when compared to the first month of last year.
Ford, with 14,970 units sold, and Hyundai, 12,962 units sold, completed the top five carmaking groups in Brazil for January.
Splitting FCA down, the Fiat brand sold 13,361 cars last month, up nearly two thousand units and 16.1% year-on-year, and month-on-month its decline of 7.5% comfortably outperformed the overall market's decline in those terms.
FCA's second brand in Brazil, Jeep, was up 19.2% year-on-year to 7,065 units sold during January but in month-on-month terms it underperformed the overall market, loosing 16.6%.
The picture was also rosy in the Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) sector with the market up by a fifth year-on-year after 26,782 units were sold in total during January.
The Fiat brand mirrored the LCV market direction as its 10,050 units sold was also up by a fifth year-on-year while in month-on-month terms it was down 17.5% which outperformed the overall market's 19.2% drop in those terms.
IVECO also had a good month for LCV sales, 194 units was up 26% year-on-year.
With ten thousand units sold in January through the Fiat brand in the LCV segment, FCA is the dominant carmaker with VW (4,266 units) and GM (3,658), its closest, albeit distant, light commerical rivals during the opening month of this year.