There are phenomena that are understood quickly by looking at a simple graph. The information provided by JATO reveals to us that at the beginning of the century, the european consumers virtually bought to equal parts subcompact three or five doors, and by then the variety of models with both bodies was very high. nowadays there.
The fall in enrolment of subcompact three-door is pronounced, and is getting worse with the arrival of the crossovers five-door of a similar size. We can say, without great risk of being wrong, that it is a matter of design, versatility and price. Another way to say it, these cars are losing much of their appeal, this is why manufacturers are eliminating them.
B typically around 4 meters long
And is that the B-3P are a phenomenon quite european. If we go to the other side of the pond, the united States, second largest market in the world, you will not find this type of offer. The Honda Fit, Chevrolet Sonic, Ford Fiesta and Kia Rio lack of three-door body, but some offer a sedan version (four doors and trunk with gate, three volumes).
The next Ford Fiesta itself will feature three-door body. The best-selling european Ford will not resign, but many others have already done so
And that is that we on this side of the Atlantic otherwise: the four-door sedans in the B segment are virtually non-existent on the western side, yes they are easier to see in the eastern part. In fact, it seems to us very unlikely to see in the street a Renault Symbol (the Clio sedan) or a Fabia 4P, the more likely it is that you have a portamatrículas Bulgarian or Romanian. What happened to them will happen to the three gates.
Only the Alpha Myth, and the DS 3 are exclusively 3P
B sedan were cars very popular when there was no money for big cars, and the families could make with subcompacts but with trunks more generous. It was the case of the Renault 7/Seven, a derivative of the Renault 5 that is only sold in Spain. Only with the child seats approved we can explain its practical disappearance, now a family unit of two adults and two children under the age of five years verges on the heroic with a B-segment car, with or without “ass” (third volume).
The 3P had the most sense for its lower price, an image, a little more sporty, and that they were associated to an audience of mainly young. To change, there were several drawbacks, as the access/egress post, a heavier door, that there are that sell them for when the children arrive, or that do not pose a significant advantage to make the love in them. The latter may not amount to much in marketing, but putting yourself in the mind of a consumer young.
The Renault 7/Seven moved to a whole generation of families in an economic way, only in Spain, the only country where it was manufactured
we mentioned above that it is a problem of design, versatility and price. A five-door costs very little more, is much more versatile, and the difference in design is becoming less and less. A three-door makes more sense the greater the differentiation with a five-door. In every generation they fall several models of three doors, to the Polo and Ibiza can lose that body. Others, such as the Hyundai i20 or Ford Fiesta, they keep it. On the other hand it is shocking that with what trendy have become your singleness extended the three doors from falling as much.
let’s Not forget that the B-segment is price content (which is not cheap, the least sold are the access models) and has little return for the manufacturers. If you are able to save several million euros by having a body that can be chosen in less than 10% of the cases, you will be saved. In some brands the demand of the three doors brushed the irrelevance, then we do not miss what is going on: it is a decision of the consumers, the manufacturers do not stop selling three-door if they sell well.
what Was logical in the 2000 remove versions of three-door with a mix close to 50%? It would have been a stupidity. Do you have logic now with a mix close to 10%? Unfortunately yes, you have. Another variant that is in danger is the B family, right now, only the Renault Clio Sport Tourer and Skoda Fabia Combi are kept in the category; SEAT stopped making the Ibiza ST in may. The Dacia Logan MCV is almost 4.5 meters, almost like a Hyundai i30 CW, so we left it out. With a force almost complete, go over the list of models three-door B-segment that we introduced last year.
This other graph also puts us in perspective. In Europe, with the data of September, we have that 27% of the enrolled was SUV or crossover (the sum of all its subsegmentos). The B-segment has fallen to 21%, that is to say, their importance drops. Many customers prefer to pay a little more for a car more spacious, even if you have penalties (worst behavior, over consumption or maintenance more expensive).
Not always a SUV/crossover is better in terms of space/luggage compartment than the alternative B. In the case of the Ford EcoSport comes out better off to buy a Focus, a segment higher and more spacious, considering an alternative more big to the Party; that was the conclusion of one of our tests. Since then the trend is that everything that has three doors to store away and become offer residual, models, exotic, Premium, sport (MX-5) or urban (smart fortwo). The B-segment is poised to offer almost exclusively variants, five-door.
The trend could be charged with the passage of time, in view of the changing tastes among the younger clientele of the cities, which are increasingly perceived unless the car is on the property as something advantageous, delay much your purchase, or strip for models more versatile. The B-segment will not disappear, but will have almost nothing to do with the B segment of the time of their parents, and let’s not talk about their grandparents. The history books will remind us that Europe could not have been motorized as it did without the B-segment.