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Sebulba's avatar

What European car models are popular in USA?

Asked by Sebulba (892points) December 18th, 2009

If I would come there with my renault clio i imagine i’d have the oddest and smallest car there with the lowest fuel consumption

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18 Answers

Gossamer's avatar

volvo bmw mercedes saab VW to name a few

strange1's avatar

i heard the jaguar is popular there

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

Mercedes-Benz. But I still mourn the loss of the basic taxicab-type diesels. Just have to make my 220D last forever, I bought it for ruggedness and economical operation, not status.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

Do you mean popular as in everyone drives them, or popular as in dream car? It depends what part of the country you live in. In my area (upper South) most people drive Hondas, Volvos or Subarus, or Fords. You rarely see a Benz, never see a Jaguar.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

You wouldn’t be able to bring your Renault with you. The U.S. DOT doesn’t allow importation of cars, new or used, that don’t meet U.S. safety standards. Renaults have not been sold here since the 1970s.

The most popular European cars sold here are Volkswagen, Volvo, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Saab, and Porsche. However, the models sold here are different from the ones sold in Europe, sometimes by a little, sometimes by a lot. For example, only a few diesel models make it to U.S. showrooms. Among very small cars, only the Smart for Two has cracked the U.S. market, and it’s quite a bit different from the European model.

Sebulba's avatar

well @IchtheosaurusRex i should inform you that Renault cars are safer than anything you have there in the US. Anyone with basic knowledge on cars know about Renault’s high safety standards

jaytkay's avatar

It varies by city and neighborhood. I see VWs and BMWs daily, other makes not so often.

Here is nationwide data from
U.S. Vehicle Sales 2008 Market Share by Company
2.4% Daimler
2.3% Volkswagen
2.3% BMW
0.5% Volvo (car)
0.2% Porsche
0.2% Volvo Truck
0.2% Saab
0.1% Jaguar

The Daimler number surprises me. They are not popular in my area. Except for the Smart Car (which is probably smaller than your Renault).

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

@Sebulba , I’m not the one you have to convince; I don’t run the DOT. Renaults were sold here up until the late 1970s; they pulled out of the U.S. market voluntarily after the last model sold here turned out to be such a piece of shit it became a joke. There is nothing to stop them from re-entering it, but if they do, they’ll have to prove they meet U.S. safety standards. Many cars already sold in Europe and elsewhere can meet them, but part of the cost of introducing a model to the U.S. is, you have to crash-test every model you want to sell here.

There are also EPA requirements. This is another stumbling block for European makers, which is a damn shame, because there are some great diesel cars sold over there.

Personally, I wish they’d start selling TVRs here again. Those little bitches are wicked fast.

arpinum's avatar

The Clio is quite popular in Mexico. Just jump over the border and you’ll feel at home. Sorry, but we have cars smaller than the Clio, and with better mileage, unless you have some crazy 1.2 liter diesel in it.

Sebulba's avatar

TVRs are great. Here in Europe we do NCAP crash test with now i think almost 75 km/hr speed. All cars gain 5 stars on a very strict test proving their high safety standards. I don’t believe that the US standards are higher cause i don’t think the Fords and Dodges and Chevrolets and Cadilacs you buy there are better. The cars of Europe and Japan are more technologically advanced than the cars of the US. On every aspect in a matter of fact. Safety is just one

RedMosquitoMM's avatar

VWs and BMWs are some of our best selling makes. Mercedes and Saab our popular as well.

arpinum's avatar

@Sebulba So the Euro spec Ford Fiesta proved quite popular in the US. But they couldn’t just bring it over since it wouldn’t meet US safety regulations. Lots of structural changes were needed for the US spec model. Just one data point, but goes to the topic or Euro spec cars coming to the US.

Oh, and Tesla Roadster.

ragingloli's avatar

I heard GM sells the Opel Insignia as a “buick” regal (buick is such a ridiculous name btw) in china

jaytkay's avatar

GM sells a lot more Buicks in China than in the US.

NY TImes – October 29, 2009For the first nine months of 2009, for instance, Buick sold 312,798 vehicles in China; in the United States, it sold 72,389.

jerv's avatar

@stranger_in_a_strange_land Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t most of the cars that have more than 1 million miles on them (or even 500K for that matter) old Mercedes diesels?

PandoraBoxx's avatar

@Sebulba, to me, your car looks very similar to a Honda Fit, which is small and fuel efficient.

ragingloli's avatar

it is a renault, and it is actually driving backwards and what you see is the back :P

jerv's avatar

@PandoraBoxx The Clio would drink the Fit’s milkshake if given a chance. The “Sports” version are by far the thirstiest at only 34 MPG in combined driving (44 MPG highway), but it also does 0–60 in under 7 seconds and tops out at 140MPH. Of course, it’s a small car and doesn’t have a V-8 so most Americans will think it’s slow and underpowered despite having more HP than many American cars.
Only $26k for a Renaultsport 200 Cup too. Not bad!

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