It’s easy to understand why brands that don’t currently offer a compact crossover are bum-rushing the labs to build them.
Look no further than the Ford Escape. The Dearborn automaker boasted record-breaking sales of its Escape today through the first six months of 2013. Since January, the company has sold over 156,000 Escape crossovers. That’s a higher volume within the segment than any other to date.
Ford says “top trade-ins for Escape are coming from Honda and Toyota owners.”
“Coastal areas, historically dominated by Honda and Toyota, are important to overall U.S. share growth of Ford Motor Company,” said Erich Merkle, Ford sales analyst. “Honda’s share of the small utility segment is down 2 full percentage points this year, as Escape continues to conquest retail customers on the coasts.” Through the same time period, Honda sold 145,763 of its compact CR-V crossovers.
As the compact crossover segment continues to swell, Ford and Honda stand out as the two titanic brands accounting for most of the market share.
Through the first half of the year, Nissan’s Rogue took third place after selling 79,051 units, which was an increase over the same period last year. Historically, the Toyota RAV4 would sit above the Rogue, but Toyota’s compact utility vehicle dropped in sales so far this year where Nissan gained.
Last year the CR-V outsold the Escape by about 20,000 units, riding on the introduction of a new generation. Now, the Escape has that advantage with a new generation introduced for the 2013 model year.
Sales hare remained strong through a series of recalls ranging in severity but including fire risks that saw Ford grounding all of its new Escapes.