January 4, 1999 - It’s here, the final year of the 1990s. When we entered the decade, we were selling 60k cars per month worldwide. We now regularly achieve over 90k sales each month. We’ve made great strides in just 10 years. July of this year will mark the beginning of Nassau’s 50th anniversary of sales. Our first car, the 1950 Metropolitan went on sale in July 1949.
But before we get there, let’s take a look back at the year that was 1998.
Fruinian Touring Car Championship
The 1998 season in the FTCC was hotly contested throughout all 20 races. An updated Viking P4 traded wins with the Blake B2400, the McNamara Shadow, the newcomer to the series, the Whitaker Wolf, among others. In the end, it was driver Alan Berta taking the championship in his McNamara Shadow, the 2nd straight title for McNamara.
Nassau showed improvement with the new Tango XF, but we were never really a contender and we failed to reach victory lane. Word is that Segelson Motorsports will be switching makes next year, leaving just our factory racing team.
FTCC Final Standings:
7th - Larry Segelson (Segelson Motorsports)
8th - Thom Franklin (Nassau Performance)
14th - Ian Potter (Segelson Motorsports)
17th - Max Browne (Nassau Performance)
1998 saw us relaunch our entire small car portfolio with the new Nifty and Tango models. We were rewarded with revenues of $17 billion and a profit of $1 billion.
Aside from a rough December, our sales were steady all year at just over 90k vehicles sold per month. This was a great recovery from the 2nd half of last year, when a lack of small car inventory destroyed our sales totals.
Economically, there was a bit of a cooldown from the recent boom, which started around 1990. We’re finally almost back to the economic levels seen before the worldwide depression, which began in the early 1950s.
But now, sales charts!
We sold 1,095,077 cars in 1998. This was up from last year and just below our best year ever, which was 1996.
704,998 - Gasmea (+7%) - Top Seller: Tango R
277,452 - Fruinia (+18%) - Top Seller: Tango R
112,627 - Archana (+3%) - Top Seller: Tango S
Sales rebounded quite nicely in Gasmea and Fruinia this year. The new compacts are a hit, with the Tango regaining top seller status in all three markets. The Nifty was also very popular in Fruinia.
The fourth generation Tango debuted with a solid sales year, moving 351,070 vehicles. This was more than last year’s shortened total, but far below the third generations average. Even with Nifty sales added in, as it basically took over as the base model, the numbers are still down. We may need to address this in the future, but we’re going to see how next year’s numbers look before making any decisions.
In its first year of sales since 1991, the Nifty S sold 113,990 units. Surprisingly, our cheapest car did not do as well in Archana as we’d expected, where it sold just over 19k.
The Tango S came in with a total of 95,750 units sold. The sedan was our top selling vehicle in Archana this year.
The Tango R is still the sales king of our compacts, as it sold 227,730 units this year. The wagon was our best seller in both Gasmea and Fruinia.
The Tango XF coupe had a very good year, as the 2 door reached sales levels not seen in our compact coupe since 1994. We sold 27,590.
Numbers for the Hornet were down, as expected but it’s still performing very well. We have yet to see the big sales drop that we see with most of our sport coupes, though we know it’s coming. Total sales this year were 94,440.
The base model Hornet S came in with 46,308 sales.
The Hornet XF sold 48,132.
The aging Accolade lineup once again fell below 100k sales, but just barely. Total sales across all four models were 99,193. We’re currently just biding time until a replacement is ready.
The Accolade SE sedan sold 22,759 units this year.
The Accolade Estate continues to be the sales leader, achieving 39,480 sales this year.
Sales for the Accolade Sport are in a free fall. Increased competition in the sport sedan market and an aging platform are to blame. After leading all Accolade models in 1994, sales have fallen by nearly 2/3. We sold just 12,506 in 1998.
Sales for the Accolade Elite fell as well. There is still a demand for our most luxurious model, but we don’t think it’ll last much longer. We sold 24,448.
Sales of our Stria sports car continue to rise, up to 11,315 for 1998. Although, we are alarmed by the significant sales drop we saw in December.
The Stria S sport coupe saw sales rise to 3,666 units.
The Stria C convertible continues to be the more popular option, even though it’s slightly slower than the coupe. We wold 7,649.
Sales of our NT100 chassis pickup and SUV continue to rise. Although we are planning an update for these sooner rather than later, most consumers feel the current models more than meet their needs. We sold a total of 117,320 across both model lines.
The Redwood pickup has been a bit of a slow seller as we try to penetrate the pickup market, which is dominated by the Gasmean automakers. We sold 33,980 trucks this year.
The Provo XL is taking off. Sales were up double digits percentage wise for 1998 as the SUV market is booming. We sold 83,340 units.
After peaking in 1997, sales of our Overland minivans cooled off a bit for 1998. After its seventh model year, our vans are going to need a replacement before they share the same fate as the Accolade. The Overland was introduced in 1992 and it looks like it. It stands out against the curvier and more aerodynamic designs of the competition. We did still sell 307,749 units though.
The base model Overland S was the sales leader, coming in with 147,685 units sold.
The larger Overland XL sold 66,073.
The flagship Overland XL AWD came in with 93,991 sales.
227,730 - Tango R (+58%)
147,685 - Overland S (-19%)
113,990 - Nifty S (NEW)
95,750 - Tango S (+24%)
93,991 - Overland XL AWD (-8%)
83,340 - Provo XL (+11%)
66,073 - Overland XL (-15%)
48,132 - Hornet XF (-20%)
46,308 - Hornet S (-8%)
39,480 - Accolade Estate (-14%)
33,980 - Redwood (+5%)
27,590 - Tango XF (+168%)
24,448 - Accolade Elite (-20%)
22,759 - Accolade SE (-28%)
12,506 - Accolade Sport (-23%)
7,649 - Stria C (+12%)
3,666 - Stria S (+14%)