Home > Brazil > Brazil 1977-1980: VW Fusca and Brasilia fight it out, Fiat lands

Brazil 1977-1980: VW Fusca and Brasilia fight it out, Fiat lands

VW Brasilia

VW Fusca production in Brazil peaked at over 250,000 units in 1972 but has been slowing down since. In 1977, the drop accelerates to -22% at 161,004 units or 166,828 sales. This puts the Fusca’s best selling car title under threat by another VW star: the Brasilia.

In 1977 the Brasilia gains 11% to reach 151,986 units (and 154,231 sales). It continues to progress in 1978 at 159,097 sales vs. 165,412 for the Fusca. In 1979 the Fusca sells 165,890 units whereas the Brasilia starts to drop but stays solid at 152,434 (-4%). No official figures for 1980 but it is expected that the Fusca stays on top.

Over the period, the Brasilia managed to pass the Fusca and lead the Brazilian market 6 times: in May, October and November 1977, September and November 78 and February 79. It peaked at 17,250 sales in October 78.

Fiat 147

The other big event of the period if the arrival of Fiat in Brazil with the 147, launched in 76. It is #6 in 77 (62,782 sales), climbs onto the podium in 78 (92,331 units) and stays on it in 79 at 108,111 units. The 147 passes the 10,000 monthly sales mark and takes the 1st spot for the first time in July 1979 at 10,924 units.

VW Passat and Ford Corcel (from right to left)

The VW Passat is also very strong over the period, #3 in 77 and #4 in 78 and 79. It is even #1 in March 1979 at 10,338 sales. The Chevrolet Chevette, Ford Corcel and VW Kombi follow.

Top 20 Production and Top 5 Sales Ranking Tables for 1977, 78 and 79 below.

Brazil Sales Full Year 1977:

Pos Model 1977 sales
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600/Fusca 166,828
2 VW Brasilia 154,231
3 VW Passat 74,770
5 Chevrolet Chevette 67,312
4 Ford Corcel 69,194
6 Fiat 147 62,782

Brazil Production Full Year 1977:

Pos Model 1977 77/76 1976 Pos
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600/Fusca 161,004 -22% 206,098 1
2 VW Brasilia 151,986 11% 136,833 2
3 VW Passat 74,756 49% 50,009 6
4 Ford Corcel 67,766 -12% 77,273 3
5 Chevrolet Chevette 67,431 -7% 72,853 4
6 Fiat 147 64,297 new 1,535 23
7 VW Kombi 38,084 -30% 54,758 5
8 Chevrolet Opala 32,781 -26% 44,421 7
9 Ford Belina 19,245 -6% 20,458 11
10 Chevrolet Caravan 17,352 -28% 24,042 8
11 Dodge 1800 13,535 5% 12,896 14
12 Chevrolet Picape 11,442 -51% 23,401 9
13 Willys Pick-up 6,975 -58% 16,535 12
14 Ford Maverick 6,499 -69% 21,287 10
15 VW Variant 5,731 -65% 16,463 13
16 VW Pick-up 4,987 -36% 7,790 15
17 Ford F-100 4,724 -6% 5,042 18
18 Ford Galaxie LTD 2,965 -58% 7,018 16
19 VW Puma 2,898 52% 1,911 22
20 Toyota Pick-up 2,269 85% 1,225 24

Chevrolet Chevette, Fiat 147 and VW Brasilia

Brazil Sales Full Year 1978:

Pos Model 1978 sales
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600 (Fusca) 165,412
2 VW Brasilia 159,097
3 Fiat 147 92,331
4 VW Passat 90,744
5 Chevrolet Chevette 87,564
6 Ford Corcel 84,664

Brazil Production Full Year 1978:

Pos Model 1978 78/77 1977 Pos
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600 (Fusca) 165,551 3% 161,004 1
2 VW Brasilia 159,916 5% 151,986 2
3 Fiat 147 92,920 45% 64,297 6
4 VW Passat 89,619 20% 74,756 3
5 Chevrolet Chevette 87,058 29% 67,431 5
6 Ford Corcel 84,646 25% 67,766 4
7 VW Kombi 45,574 20% 38,084 7
8 Chevrolet Opala 44,628 36% 32,781 8
9 Ford Belina 30,792 60% 19,245 9
10 Chevrolet Caravan 26,413 52% 17,352 10
11 Chevrolet Picape 18,498 62% 11,442 12
12 VW Variant 15,449 170% 5,731 15
13 Dodge 1800 10,880 -20% 13,535 11
14 VW Pick-up 5,665 14% 4,987 16
15 Willys Pick-up 5,282 -24% 6,975 13
16 Ford F-100 5,189 10% 4,724 17
17 Ford Galaxie LTD 4,754 60% 2,965 18
18 Willys Jeep 3,496 129% 1,528 23
19 VW Puma 3,390 17% 2,898 19
20 Toyota Pick-up 3,116 37% 2,269 20

Brazil Sales Full Year 1979:

Pos Model 1979 sales
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600 (Fusca) 165,890
2 VW Brasilia 152,434
3 Fiat 147 108,111
4 VW Passat 102,418
5 Chevrolet Chevette 92,203
6 Ford Corcel 88,559

Brazil Production Full Year 1979:

Pos Model 1979 79/78 1978 Pos
1 VW Sedan 1300/1600 (Fusca) 167,075 1% 165,551 1
2 VW Brasilia 152,966 -4% 159,916 2
3 Fiat 147 109,407 18% 92,920 3
4 VW Passat 103,367 15% 89,619 4
5 Chevrolet Chevette 92,239 6% 87,058 5
6 Ford Corcel 88,759 5% 84,646 6
7 VW Kombi 44,721 -2% 45,574 7
8 Chevrolet Opala 41,216 -8% 44,628 8
9 Ford Belina 37,233 21% 30,792 9
10 Chevrolet Picape 26,719 44% 18,498 11
11 Chevrolet Caravan 26,520 0% 26,413 10
12 VW Variant 14,615 -5% 15,449 12
13 Dodge 1800 10,146 -7% 10,880 13
14 Fiat Pick-up 7,078 new 0  –
15 Ford F-100 6,887 33% 5,189 16
16 Willys Pick-up 5,502 4% 5,282 15
17 Ford Galaxie LTD 5,061 6% 4,754 17
18 VW Pick-up 4,431 -22% 5,665 14
19 Willys Jeep 3,997 14% 3,496 18
20 VW Puma 3,608 6% 3,390 19

Source: Quatro Rodas

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