Vehicle classes - the explanation

Lexus NX, Lexus LS400 and Lexus LFA - the history of Lexus at a glance.


In the vehicle segment one differentiates the individual car models according to individual classes. The first and smallest class is called after the motor vehicle Federal Ministry of the smallest car, of the European commission segment A.

What distinguishes the micro cars?

For one thing, these micro-cars, which by the way have a high level of popularity, have an affordable new price in the new-vehicle sector. In return, they have only a small amount of equipment. There is also a restriction in the area of ​​space, because a small car is much narrower and smaller than a vehicle of the middle class.

Most microcars have 4 seats, which greatly reduces trunk space. The engine power of the microcar has improved greatly in recent years, but is still quite low. According to today's price segments, a microcar costs between 9.000 and 14.000 Euro.

Cooperation with partners in the microcar sector

In order to maintain the low purchase price, but nevertheless to provide the customer with sufficient comfort, many manufacturers join forces in the development of micro cars. The associated concept is called badge engineering or platform strategy.

Vehicles manufactured and developed using the badge engineering strategy often have a so-called "twin" vehicle, which has merely been slightly modified on the bodywork.

Examples for this are:

  • Aston Martin Cygnet and Toyota iQ
  • Seat Arosa and VW Lupo
  • Suzuki Alto, Maruti A-Star, Mazda Carol and Nissan Pixo

Vehicles developed with the platform strategy have the same basic machine shape and body type.

Examples for this are:


small car

As a small car one calls all the vehicles, which are between the Kleinstwagen and the compact class. In the vehicle segment of the European Commission, this class forms the B segment. Popular are these vehicles, similar to the minicars, because of their affordable new price, which currently moves between 12.000-18.000 Euro. Despite this low price, these are vehicles that offer a relatively high level of comfort.

What distinguishes the small cars?

The low original price is reflected in the facilities and the space. Most small cars are designed so that four people have enough space and yet a sufficient trunk volume is available. Few representatives also accommodate five people (for example, Suzuki Swift).

The small cars are available as a three- or five-door. Engine performance has improved significantly in recent years. The design of the vehicles is virtually ajar and has been changed several times in the many years of development.

The market situation of small cars

Small cars offer some aspects that speak for the purchase. One aspect relates to the search for parking spaces in metropolitan areas. Fuel economy and occupant safety are quite acceptable in such a vehicle.

Current models in this vehicle segment are:

The purchase of a small car can be quite beneficial. Decent prices, high safety and small size make these vehicles one of the most popular vehicles on the market. The number of new registrations has increased substantially in recent years.


The compact class

Cars in the compact class are located between the small car and the lower middle class. The compact class is known by many vehicle connoisseurs as the lower middle class. In the vehicle sector of the European Commission called the compact class as a C-segment.

The latest statistics have shown that most of the new registrations in this vehicle segment can be traced back to commercial use, although the new price of a compact vehicle at 17.000 to 24.000 euros still seems affordable. The Toyota Corolla and the Ford Focus are among the best-selling vehicles.

The characteristics of the compact class

The compact class is characterized by the striking rear. This is created by the manufacturers as a hatchback. Additional feature of the compact class is the loading of the interior through the tailgate and a higher engine power in relation to the weight of the vehicle.

Vehicles in these segment areas are characterized by good value for money, offer good engine performance and ensure sufficient space in the interior and trunk.

The vehicle length has changed significantly in recent years and today is between 4,15 and 4,50 meters. The vehicles are usually traded up to 30.000 Euro.


The demarcation to the middle class

According to the Federal Motor Vehicle Agency vehicles with a notchback are not necessarily the middle class, even if they are falsely referred to as such. Vehicles with notchback can also be assigned to the compact class, deciding the length and performance of the vehicle.

Popular models of the compact class are:


The middle class

The mid-range vehicles are located between the compact class vehicles and the vehicles in the upper middle class. In the European Commission segment, this class is also called the D segment. They are mainly bought by companies. The proportion of private individuals who are gaining a midsize car is rather low.

The prices of mid-range vehicles cover a wide range and settle between 20.000 Euro and 40.000 Euro. From the middle class, the compact class, often referred to as the lower middle class, and the upper middle class split historically.

The characteristics of the middle class

Most mid-size vehicles are offered as a five-door sedan with a notchback. However, there are also manufacturers who offer these vehicles as a combination variant. Even today, the four-cylinder engine is often used as the basis of engine power. There are, however, at extra cost and other engine strengths, the PS numbers are on average between 102 and 122 and are designed more for long distances.

For many manufacturers, the product range ends in the middle class. The reason for this is rising gasoline prices and the growing lack of interest of customers in vehicles that are too large. The mid-range vehicles are also characterized by plenty of space in the interior and a certain luxury.

Popular vehicles in Germany are:


The upper middle class

The upper middle class is, according to the Federal Motor Vehicle Authority, the second highest vehicle class. It lies between the middle class and the upper class. In the European segment, the upper middle class is located in the e-segment. For the first time, the term upper middle class emerged in the 1980 years and should serve to classify vehicles that were higher-quality than the pure middle class.

The sale of these vehicles is strongest according to the latest business statistics. Individuals are less likely to be attracted to the class, unless the upper middle class is to serve as a family vehicle.

This distinguishes the upper middle class

The upper middle class stands out from the middle class and the upper class, because it has more comfort than the middle class, but still not enough to be classified in the upper class.

The new prices of the upper middle class are between 30.000 Euro and 95.000 Euro. The upper middle class is almost always sold as a five-door. In addition, the vehicles often have a notchback, but they are also available as a station wagon. The interior and the trunk are generously cut as a rule and offer space for the entire family.

Among the most popular vehicles of the upper middle class in Germany include:


The upper class

The upper class is the highest vehicle class under the name of the Federal Motor Vehicle Authority and is referred to in the European Commission as a luxury class or F-segment. In the upper class only certain vehicles are guided, which must meet the highest standards.

The price breakdown ranges from 80.000 euros to well over 1000.000 euros. According to statistics, new registrations in the luxury class are falling. However, there is a difference here to the other vehicle classes, because companies are not so strongly represented in this segment.

The features of the upper class

Most upper classes are still equipped with rear-wheel drive today. That is the first characteristic by which you can recognize a luxury vehicle. Furthermore, the interior is very large and luxuriously furnished. These vehicles have the latest safety features. In addition, the class is characterized by powerful engines and innovations in the automotive groups are first introduced with these vehicles.

The market sales of luxury-class vehicles are proving to be increasingly difficult and more and more dealers and manufacturers renounce entirely on this segment.


The market situation of the upper class

Upper class vehicles are known to have a high price. Due to the high-performance engines installed and the high purchase price, these vehicles are becoming less interesting for the majority of the population because the purchase and fuel costs are very high for the consumer.

The most popular vehicles in this class include:


[= ””]The second part is about the vehicle classes: mini-van, large-capacity van, off-road vehicle, compact van and pick-up.


Related Posts
Read more

IAA 2013: Ford can also premium

With its two world premieres, the S-Max Concept and the Mondeo Concept Vignale, Ford is consistently playing the premium card. After this…