Ford leads retail growth among Millennials thanks to Fiesta image

The U.S. automaker has announced that it has enjoyed the fastest retail-sales growth of any auto brand in the United States among the highly sought Millennials demographic over the last four years.

The brand posted an 80% increase in sales among shoppers ages 18 through 34 in the first half of this year compared with the first half of 2009, according to R.L. Polk registration data cited by the company, while the industry overall increased by only 35%.

Ford gave the biggest credit for its achievement to the new Ford Fiesta subcompact, which it introduced in 2010 with a marketing campaign heavily targeted toward Millennials. That audience also has been hugely attracted by the Sync infotainment system. Another boost for Fiesta has been Ford’s efforts to sell them in California, where the brand was limp for a long time. About 45% of Fiesta buyers reside on one of the coasts compared with Ford’s 38% average across its lineup.

Overall, Ford’s U.S. market share including fleet sales was 16.2% during the first half of 2013 and 15.3% for all of 2009. So clearly, Millennials are an increasingly receptive audience for Ford compared with the rest of Americans. Other models contributing to the share gain have included the Focus compact, the radically restyled new Fusion mid-size sedan; the new C-Max Hybrid; the Escape compact SUV and even a freshened version of the Ford Explorer SUV.