As the automotive industry leaves behind a difficult year and heads towards uncertain times when it comes to electrification, there are interesting statistics about 2023. One of them is the total number of new production cars introduced during the year. According to my coverage and excluding the simplest rebadges, restylings, part-changes, vans and light commercial vehicles, the industry introduced 157 new models.

As expected, the majority of these introductions were SUVs. Last year, a total of 89 SUVs were presented to the public, accounting for 56% of all vehicles. It is these vehicles that continue to be in demand by the majority of consumers around the world. Despite recent attempts to curb their popularity by introducing higher taxes in some countries, the public is still in love with the high-silhouette vehicles.

Number of new passenger cars revealed in 2023 by segment - graphic

SUVmania

Nearly half of the new SUV models come from Chinese automakers. These groups presented 41 models, followed by European manufacturers with 17 and Japanese manufacturers with 16. American manufacturers presented 9 new SUVs and Korean manufacturers 6. Toyota, Geely, Great Wall and Hyundai-Kia were the groups that offered the most SUVs to the public.

Surprisingly, the second most popular segment in terms of number of new models introduced was the saloon segment. The industry developed 27 different saloons worldwide, 17 of which came from Chinese automotive groups. China is by far the largest saloon market and one of the few where demand continues to grow. The Geely Group led this segment.

China: 77 new models

Of the 157 new cars viewed by the public this year, 49% were from Chinese manufacturers. This figure is significantly higher than China's role in global vehicle sales, which stands at around 33%. The Asian giant continues to increase its influence on the global automotive landscape, introducing more and more brands and models that are not only available in China, but also in foreign markets. European automakers introduced 34 new models. They were followed by Japan with 24, the United States with 14 and Korea with 8.

Number of new passenger cars revealed in 2023 by country of origin - graphic

Toyota and Geely Group in the lead

The world's largest car manufacturer is also the one that has introduced the most new models this year. Toyota has launched 16 different new production cars since January as part of a product offensive that has included the relaunch of the Lexus brand and the update of key models.

These models are: the Toyota Agya for Southeast Asia, the Toyota Alphard for Asia, the Toyota bZ3 for China; the Toyota Century SUV for Japan; the second-generation Toyota C-HR; the new Crown family, consisting of the regular saloon, the Signia SUV for North America and the Sport; the Toyota Grand Highlander for North America; the Toyota Land Cruiser 250 for global markets; the new Tacoma for North America and the Yaris Cross for emerging markets. In addition, Lexus introduced the new GX, LBX, LM and TX.

Most car model debuts 2023 by manufacturer - graphic

The Geely Group and its many brands presented 12 new models: 4 Geely, 2 Volvo, 2 ZEEKR, 1 Livan, Lotus, Lynk & Co and 1 Polestar. Among the European manufacturers, Volkswagen topped the list with 8 new models: Volkswagen ID.7, Passat and Tiguan; Skoda Kodiaq, Superb and Superb Combi; Cupra Tavascan and Lamborghini Revuelto.

The author of the article, Felipe Muñoz, is Automotive Industry Specialist at  JATO Dynamics.