Toyota will launch in Europe a station wagon variant of the Auris compact, trying make up for the lost ground to Kia and Hyundai.
The Auris wagon is the first compact wagon to be sold in Europe with a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain. The automaker said that it expects a third of Auris sales to be diesel, a third gasoline variants and a third hybrid versions. Currently wagon sales account for 25% of compact car sales in Europe, but the Auris has struggled to fight against competitors which also offer wagon alternatives.
“Offering a broad range of options for the next generation Auris would give it a fair stab at the market compared to the relative lack of success the first generation had,” said Ian Fletcher, senior analyst at IHS Automotive.
According to IHS Automotive the compact wagon market in Europe is expected to remain stable until 2016 with about 700,000 units sold annually. In 2011 Auris sold 87,598 units, down from 134,206 units in 2008. IHS said that by adding a wagon Auris’ sales will increase to 115,000 units in 2013, but they will fall lower than 100,000 units by 2015. From January to July Toyota sold 48,007 Auris according to data gathered by JATO Dynamics.