Back again with some speculations of US market performance levels, this time for premium compact sedans. A lot of branding needs but I think this segment is the future of consumer sportscars to be honest. Understand that I’m attempting to predict the future of a segment while using today’s terms and products. But the $100,000 compact supersports sedan isnt far away.
Level 1 - Commodity Compact Sports Sedan
Benchmark: ($22,000, 140 hp)
[C100] - [310i] - [A4 1.5t] - [IS100] - [Q50 1.5t] - [ATS 1.4] - [XE 10t] - [Giulia 1.4t] - [G70 1.6t] - [S60 T3 base] - ILX 2.0L].
Level 2 - Upmarket Compact Sports Sedan
Benchmark: ($27,000, 170 hp)
[C150] - [315i] - [A4 1.8t] - [IS150] - [Q50 1.5t Sport] - [ATS 2.5] - [XE 15t] - [Giulia 1.4t Sport] - [G70 1.6t Premium] - [S60 T3] - ILX 2.4 Base (ILX 1.5t base)
Level 3 - Premium Compact Sports Sedans
Benchmark: ($32,000, 200 hp)
[C200] - 320i - A4 ultra 2.0t - [IS200] - Q50 2.0t - [ATS 2.5 Luxury] - [XE 20t] - [Giulia Base] - [G70 2.0t Base] - [S60 T4] - ILX 2.4 A-Spec (ILX 1.5t A-Spec)
Level 4 - Super Premium Compact Sports Sedans
Benchmark: ($38,000, 250 hp)
C300 - 330i - A4 2.0t - IS200t (IS250) - Q50 3.0t (Q50 2.0t Sport) - ATS 2.0t Luxury - XE 25t - Giulia Ti - [G70 2.0t Premium] - S60 T5 - [ILX V6]
Level 5 - Luxury Compact Sports Sedans
Benchmark: ($43,000, 300 hp)
[C400] - [340i] - [A4 ultra 3.0t] - IS350 - Q50 3.0t - ATS 3.6 Luxury - XE 35t (XE 30t) - [Giulia Veloce] - [G70 Sport 2.0t] - S60 T6 R-Design - [ILX 2.0t Type-S]
Level 6 - High Luxury Compact Sports Sedans
Benchmark: ($51,000, 350 hp)
AMG C43 - M340i - S4 - [IS350 F-Sport] - [Q50 Blue Sport] - ATS 3.6 Performance - XE 35t R-Sport - [Giulia Veloce Turismo] - [G70 3.3t] - S60 Polestar - [ILX 2.0t Type-R]
[This is IMPORTANT]
Benchmark: ($57,000, 400 hp)
[AMG C55] - [M340i Competition] - [S4 plus] - [IS F-Sport] - Q50 Red Sport - [ATS V-Sport] - [XE S] - [Giulia Superveloce] - [G70 Sport 3.3t] - [S60 Polestar Plus] - [ILX V6 Sport Hybrid]
Level 7 - Prestige Compact Sports Sedans
($63,000, 450 hp)
AMG C63 - M3 - (RS4) - [IS F] - [Q50 Grey Sport] - ATS V - [XE R] - [Giulia Stradale] - [G70 N] - [PS60] - [ILX V6 Sport Hybrid A-Spec]
Level 8 - Prestige Plus Compact Sedans
($72,000, 500 hp)
AMG C63 S - M3 Competition - [RS4 performance] - [IS F/G] - [Q50 Black Sport] - [ATS V Carbon] - [XE SVR] - Giulia Quadrifoglio - [G70 N Track Edition] - [PS60 R-Design] - [ILX V6 Sport Hybrid Type-S]
Level 9 - Exotic
($84,000, 550 hp)
(AMG C63 R) - (M3 CS) - [RS performance plus] - [IS F/GZ] - [Q50 Aeroglaze Sport] - [ATS V-R] - [XE SVR-S] - [Giulia QV Corsa] - [G70 NV] - [PS60 R] - [ILX Sport Hybrid Type-R]
Level 10 - Prestige Exotic
($99,000, 600 hp)
[AMG C63 Black Series] - (M3 GTS) - [RS4 R] - [IS F/GZ Nurburgring Edition] - [Q50 Vantablack Sport] - [ATS V-RS] - [XE SVR-S Track Edition] - [Giulia Quadrifoglio Trofeo] - [G70 NV-S] - [PS60 R Ragnarok Edition] - [ILX Sport Hybrid Type-R GT]
Some current sports sedans are precisely on target in their market segment, while others are great values. Still, there are a few vehicles being offered right now that aren’t priced too high or not hitting the power target simply due to the market not being there to increase the volume and lower the pricing. Plus branding stumbling around in the dark right now because many underestimated how wide this compact sports sedan market will end up becoming by 2020.
That “Market Gap” is extremely important because that’s where brands such as Porsche, Maserati, and even Aston Martin would be able to enter this segment. It’s also where that AMG-developed sedan concept Mercedes was toying with as well as other purely performance-brand compact sedans can enter the market.
Like I said at the start, people are going to begin migrating to these compact sports sedans rather than the fixed-roof 2-doors. Don’t be surprised when you start seeing every automaker offer a “4-door Fastback” without any “2-door Coupes” coming down the line. That is unless they are going to offer a softtop convertible bodystyle. We’ll see where the US market goes.