Seat becomes UK's fastest-growing volume car maker

feedback@motor1.com (James Fossdyke)
Seat Ateca

Brands including Fiat and Nissan have struggled as the market continues to contract.

Seat is the UK’s fastest-growing volume car brand, after half-year figures saw its sales jump 22 percent compared with last year.

The Spanish brand is swimming against the tide as the UK car market shrinks, with nationwide sales down by more than six percent overall.

Household names including Fiat and Nissan have suffered from a lack of consumer confidence and punitive measures against diesel vehicles, with both manufacturers seeing sales tumble by 30 percent year-on-year.

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Other, smaller manufacturers have had even worse fortunes. Nissan’s luxury arm, Infiniti, has seen its sales cut from more than 2,000 in the first six months of 2017 to just over 550 in the same period of 2018 – a drop of more than 74 percent.

Mercedes-owned Smart have suffered, too, with sales down by more than one third, while Aston Martin’s sales have contracted by a similar amount.

Seat, though, has outstripped the growth of Kia and Volkswagen, making it the fastest-growing brand to register more than 20,000 UK vehicles during the first half of the year.

The new Arona small SUV is one of the vehicles leading the charge, accounting for around 5,700 of the brand’s 35,896 UK sales, while the Leon and Ibiza hatchbacks have both seen sales grow by more than a quarter (26 and 28 percent respectively).

Richard Harrison, Managing Director of Seat UK, said: ‘Despite the declining new car market, Seat UK has recorded a sales record in every single month so far in 2018, firmly establishing us as the fastest-growing volume car brand in the UK – a truly outstanding result by the UK team and our dealer network partners.’