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Top 10 Best-Selling Compact Cars in September 2012

By Trevor Dorchies | October 03, 2012
Like the midsize sedan segment, there weren't many surprises when sales figures came rolling in for September 2012. The top three automakers can all be interchanged and have done so many times in prior months. Claiming the top spot and compact car supremacy for last month is the Chevrolet Cruze, and all 25,787 units that found new homes. To date, 180,600 Chevy Cruzes have been sold. Coming in right behind the Cruze is another familiar name, the Toyota Corolla, which moved 23,026 units last month and raised its 2012 total to 222,703 units sold. Rounding out the top three is another heavyweight in this smaller class, the Honda Civic. The Civic managed to move 21,546 units last month bringing its total tally of units sold so far for 2012 to 234,029, the most for any compact car on this list. The rest of the list is filled with the usuals as well, including the Ford Focus which sold 19,736 units last month, good for fourth place on this list. To date, the Focus has found 186,686 new homes in 2012 and still three months remain. The Hyundai Elantra was the fifth most sought after vehicle in the compact car segment last month with 18,305 units sold and 152,575 units to date. Chevrolet's all-new Sonic also made the list with 7,525 units sold adding to its year-to-date total of 64,746 units. Check out the top 10 best-selling compact cars in September of 2012 below. Paragraphimage 10. Dodge Dart (5,235/YTD 9,254) Chrysler's newcomer checks in at number 10 on the September sales list with 5,235 units sold last month. In its first few months of sales, the Dart has been able to find 9,254 new homes and we expect to see that number continue to rise. The Dart contributed to Chrysler's best September since 2007 pushing the Dodge brand up 18 percent. Dodge's new compact also helped contribute to the 47,356 units sold last month, more than any other Chrysler brand. The all-new 2012 Dodge Dart was launched earlier this year, but sales are expected to spike once Chrysler released the 2.4-liter engine and R/T trim for the Dart. Once SRT gets its hands on Dodge's new compact, expect sales to increase too. Paragraphimage 9. Kia Forte (6,912/YTD 61,228) The Kia Forte sold 6,912 units last month, good for number nine on our list. The Forte has helped pace Kia's sales as of late, finishing in third behind the Optima and the Sorento so far this year. The Forte has been around since 2008 when it was tasked with replacing the Cerato in Kia's line-up. The Forte didn't come to North America until the 2011 model year. Kia has made it no secret that it's targeting younger buys with the Forte's styling and price tag. It's available in Koup (coupe), sedan, and hatchback form. Through the first nine months of 2012, that strategy appears to be working. Paragraphimage 8. Chevrolet Sonic (7,525/YTD 64,746) One of the biggest surprises on this list is the Chevrolet Sonic. Formally the forgettable Aveo, the Sonic has shed that reputation for one that jumps out of planes and kick flips over large skateboards at theme parks. The Sonic isn't the most flashy vehicle in Chevrolet's portfolio, but it's fun to drive and aimed squarely at the college aged demographic.  Its' motorcycle-inspired instrument cluster is just one of several features that caters to the younger crowd. We don't expect the Sonic to sell in droves like the Civic or Cruze, but judging by its current momentum it will continue to be a bright spot for the Bowtie's sales figures month in and month out. Paragraphimage 7. Nissan Sentra (9,345/YTD 85,840) The Nissan Sentra, currently in its sixth generation, checks in at number seven on the September sales list with 9,345 units sold. For the year, Nissan's compact has managed to move 85,840 units and there's still three months to go in 2012. For the 2013 model year, the Sentra has received a complete redesigned and will now mirror its bigger sibling, the Altima, in exterior styling cues. Currently, the Sentra is powered by a 2.0-liter or a 2.5-liter engine and is mated to either a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT. We expect to see sales pick back up next year once the seventh-gen Sentra has been released into the market. Paragraphimage 6.  Volkswagen Jetta (12,584/YTD 110,146) For the ninth month of 2012, the Volkswagen Jetta is sixth on the sales list with 12,584 units sold. In total to date, 110,146 units have been sold and there's still time to watch that number grow. The Jetta and Golf have long been sales pillars for the German automaker and last month was no exception. Originally introduced back in 1979, Volkswagen has seen countless Jetta models roll off the assembly line. Now in its sixth generation, the Jetta continues to be one of a few models pace Volkswagen's sales.  Currently, the Jetta offers seven different engine set-ups and four different transmissions. Paragraphimage 5. Hyundai Elantra (18,305/YTD 152,575) The Hyundai Elantra quietly sits at number five on the September sales list with 18,305 units moved last month. So far in 2012, a total of 152,575 units have been sold, with three months to go. Now in its fifth generation, the Elantra has quietly sold well and has kept up with the likes of Ford, Honda and Toyota's offerings. Assembled in Ulsan, South Korea and Montgomery, Alabama, the Elantra has steadily risen up the ranks of the compact car segment in the United States. We expect to continue seeing the Elantra's sales figures rise for the remainder of 2012 and beyond. Paragraphimage 4. Ford Focus (19,736/YTD 186,686) Since its introduction in 1998, the Focus has been a homerun for Ford with over 2.3 million units sold so far. Last month, the Focus moved 19,736 units adding to its yearly total of 186,686, the third most so far for its class in 2012. Now in its third generation, the Ford Focus can be configured in both sedan and hatchback form. The Focus is one of Ford's models to fall under its global sales plan and sits on the Blue Oval's global C-car platform. We expect the Focus to come close to 250,000 units sold in North America this year and recent sales figures give us little doubt it will. Paragraphimage 3. Honda Civic (21,546/YTD 234,029) Checking in at third place for September sales is the Honda Civic which managed to move 21,546 units last month. So far this year, the Civic has sold 234,029 units which puts it on pace to one of Honda's best-sellers for 2012. When the Civic was introduced back in 1973, it was classified as a subcompact vehicle until the 2001 model's size forced it into the compact segment instead. As of 2006, Honda had managed to sell 7.3 million Civics in the United States and a total of 16.3 million across the globe. Now in its ninth generation, the Honda Civic shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Paragraphimage 2. Toyota Corolla (23,026/YTD 222,703) Another usual heavyweight in the compact class, the Toyota Corolla was able to sell enough units (23,026) last month to place second on this list. For the year, a total of 222,703 units have been moved with that number expected to swell some more. Entering its eleventh generation next year, the Corolla has moved Herculean type numbers since 2000 with an average of 330,000 units sold a year. The tenth generation Corolla continues to keep pace with years past and because of these sales figures, Toyota relies on a whopping 19 different assembly facilities positioned all around the world. There's mixed feelings about the current body style with same saying it looks like the one before it while others think it's a step forward. Paragraphimage 1. Chevrolet Cruze (25,787/YTD 180,600) The Chevrolet Cruze takes the top spot for September sales in the compact class with a grand total of 25,787 units sold. So far in 2012, the Cruze has sold 180,600 units, respectable in its own sense but it's going to need some more help to catch up to the Corolla let alone the Civic. Even still, the Cruze has been a bright spot for the Bowtie brand that has been dealing with fires and camouflaged sports cars as of late. The Cruze was also the topic of an engine fire recall but it hasn't deterred sales still. For the 2012 model year, the Cruze received a mild facelift that tweaked the front bumper, headlights, interior features, and engine selection.  While we don't expect the Cruze to take the segment crown for 2012, we do expect it to be in the top five. Source: Chevrolet, Honda, Nissan, Ford, Chrysler, Kia, Toyota, Hyundai, Volkswagen
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