The Citroën C4 Schrödinger: when the most sold is not more sold


ANFAC gives victory to the Citroën C4 in the ranking of sales of 2016

¿What has been the best selling car in Spain for 2016? Answer to that question is not as simple as it might seem. Just take a look at the headlines of the media these days to verify that a granted this honorary title to the Citroen C4 and others Seat Leon.

The Citroën C4 seems to be a mirror of the paradox of Schrödinger whose famous thought experiment of the cat showed that the cat could simultaneously be alive and dead. You can ensure that the C4 is the tourism sold to the time that you can argue otherwise, and in both cases we would have reason even though it may seem counterintuitive.

This apparent inconsistency makes sense even for unravel your mystery there is to understand what we mean exactly when we talk about “the best selling car”. We must start from the basis that the official statistics not reflect sales but enrollment and this complicates things.


The Seat Leon is the tourism more sold according to data from ANIACAM

The absolute data of enrollments in the General Direction of Traffic do not have sales real and should be treated for estimating how many cars have been traded. These calculations are carried out statically and there are different criteria, with the most popular being those of the National Association of Manufacturers of Cars and Trucks (ANFAC) and of the National Association of Importers of Cars, Trucks, Buses and Motorcycles (ANIACAM). ANFAC shows in its tables that the Citroën C4 has been the best-selling while ANIACAM gives victory to the Seat Leon.

Both ANFAC as ANIACAM periodically published their statistics on enrolments, producing slightly different results. A moment what the data should not be equal? Differ because are estimates and the guidelines followed by each agency with the exceptions that I mentioned before may be different in some cases. In this way we can see that according to ANFAC have been sold 1.147.007 cars in 2016, while ANIACAM notes that have been 1.153.654 cars in that same period.

The C4 hatchback is not even the Citroën sold more

The difficulty is that not all sales end up with the registration of the vehicle in question and that not all of the titles imply that they have been sold a new car. This is so in the vast majority of cases, but there are many exceptions as can be rematriculaciones, imports and exports, the automatriculaciones of dealers and fleets for internal use.

On this latter case will, as an example, vehicles circulating in the airport premises, to demonstrate that the relationship between sales and registrations is not perfect. An airline company can buy a fleet of new cars to give multiple ground assistance services to their aircraft, and in some cases did not enroll because they will not circulate on public roads, are used strictly in the private grounds of the airport. Therefore there is a sale of several cars that are not reflected in the data of enrolments.


Certain cars sold did not enroll, as a few of assistance for aviation, which requires them to make calculations to get the actual sales

No one is lying, the data are just as valid under the criteria that have been performed respectively. But another fundamental difference between the figures of ANFAC and ANIACAM is the way in which it is shown that information why ANFAC shows in its tables that the Citroën C4 has been the most sold?

The reason is that ANFAC gives the grouped data of the family of models C4, that is to say, show accumulated data of C4, C4 Cactus, C4 Picasso and Grand C4 Picasso. Although they are of different segments and show clear differences, the four models are marketed under a common name and in the aggregate (34.615 units) add up to more enrolments than the Seat Leon (33.653 units). Interestingly, the C4 Aircross is listed separately.

The confusion is generated when not specified, nor in many media, nor on the part of Citroën, which this victory of the C4 is actually due to the sum of the various models. The omission of this fundamental detail makes many mean that the best-selling model is the popular compact C4, a belief that is of interest to Citroën from a commercial point of view but that, of course, is far away from the reality.

This circumstance in the reports of ANFAC also found in models and families of other manufacturers. I put some relevant examples. We find the Renault Megane and Scenic, both grouped under the name Megane, something similar to that happens with the C4. In the case of the MINI there is no distinction between any of their models so that the data appears together of MINI Hatch, 5-Door, Cabrio, Clubman, Paceman and Countryman. They can even mix brands, as the data of the Fiat 124 Spider will add up in reality the figure of this model with the Abarth 124 Spider. It is clear that there is to know to read between the lines to know the reality.

The Seat Leon is the most sought-after model for the third year in a row

For its part, ANIACAM provides a more detailed report and with a separation of models more to be one of the reasons why we use the information of this organism to develop our analysis of sales of cars in Spain. Here the clear winner is the Seat Leon (33.653 units), the most successful model commercially. Obviously this data reflects the versions 3 and 5 doors as well as the family, that is to say, different body types, but always within the same model.


The C4 Picasso is the most popular model of Citroën

In regard to the name Citroën C4, with the information of the association of importers we can see more clearly what position you are in each of the models of that family. The first thing that attracts attention is that the Citroen C4 hatchback is not only not achieved the title of best selling car in Spain but that is not one of the compact most sought after. Even more surprising is to see that the C4 or even the best-selling model in Citroen 2016.

The Citroën C4 Picasso is the most sought-after model of the brand of the double chevron -along with their version of 7-seater Grand C4 Picasso – and can even boast of being the mpvs more popular, with 13.879 units according to the disaggregated data from ANIACAM. It is followed by the C3 (12.674 units), then the C4 Cactus (11.152 units) and in the fourth place we find the C4 compact (9.607 units).

The paradox is it what Is the Citroën C4, the most sold? Yes, when we speak of the family of models C4 Citroen. Not if we speak only of the traditional compact model. Therefore, the C4 is both the most sold and not to be, something of what Erwin Schrödinger would be proud.