28 March 1997

German sales off to a flying start in 1997

IN stark contrast to the UK, tractor sales in Germany, the second biggest market in Europe after France, have got off to a strong start.

Last year, German farmers bought 27,393 tractors, 3.4% more than in 1995. But Jan 1997 sales are up 10.5% on Jan 1996, boosting the rolling 12-month figure to +3.7%.

Although Fendt remains individual brand leader, the acquisition of Steyr by Case, and distribution of some of the Austrian manufacturers models through the Case dealer network, has given the US corporation a 3% increase in market share in January, compared with the figures achieved individually last year.

The Same Deutz-Fahr Group also got off to a better start, selling 204 Agrotron, Agroplus and Agrokid models to lift its market share for the month to 14.6% from the 1996 full-year figure of 9.1%. Sales of its Italian-built models also look more promising.

But monthly figures can be misleading. John Deeres 8.5% share of January sales, for example, is half that achieved in a full year.

Look at sales by maker, and AGCO stakes a strong claim, with more than a quarter of the market taken by its Fendt and Massey Ferguson operations, ahead of Deere, Case, Same Deutz-Fahr Group and New Holland.

Popularity of the Belarus tractor in the former eastern Germany is reflected in a top 10 position, just ahead of Mercedes-Benz Unimog.

JCB fails to feature in the figures, despite Germany being one of its best export markets, simply because it operates within a relatively narrow market sector and chooses not to disclose too much. &#42

German tractor market – 1996 sales and market share by maker

ManufacturerTotal Market


AGCO (Fendt+MF)6,78524.7

Deere & Co 4,45816.2

 (John Deere)*

Case (Case IH


Same (Same, etc


New Holland (Fiat


Belarus 1,0263.7


*Includes some tractors built by Renault