THIS IS the year of reckoning in Europe's largest segment. New versions of the three traditional leaders in the lower-medium class will be on sale.
General Motors' Astra debuted last month. The new Volkswagen Golf was launched in October, but is just now hitting production targets. The Ford Focus will replace the Escort in October.
Even at the end of their life cycles last year, the Golf, Astra and Escort combined accounted for over 10 percent of European sales.