COSTA MESA, Calif. — NADAguides latest Brand Share Report showed that European brands as a group experienced the largest share increase in consumer interest during the second quarter, jumping nine percent.

The vehicle research Website’s analysts attribute a portion of the gain to MINI and the launch of the Fiat 500. Data showed that interest in Fiat increased by more than 168 percent during reporting period, while MINI experienced an increase in consumer interest of more than 206 percent. Analysts attributed Mini’s pickup in interest to the launch of the Countryman model.

“The shift in interest for the European brands was not surprising to the analytical team. Compact, fuel-efficient and versatile vehicles are capturing more and more market interest as they address current in-market car shopper needs,” said Troy Snyder, NADAguides director of product development.

Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota maintained their positions as the top three most researched brands on Nissan landed in fourth while Honda sat in the fifth spot. The Website also reported that Nissan share increased 93 percent, knocking Honda out of the fourth spot.

Interest in Ford fell 15.5 percent in overall consumer interest on a quarter-to-quarter basis, but the vehicle makers still managed to hold onto the No. 1 spot with 14.3 percent of interest on the Website. Chevrolet and Toyota stayed fairly consistent during the second quarter, with Chevrolet owning 11.8 percent of consumer interest (11.9 percent during Q1) and Toyota owning 9.6 percent (10.3 percent during Q1).

Domestics continue to lead in sales and in consumer interest on NADAguides, though interest for domestics actually decreased by 4.4 percent while sales increased 1.9 percent during the quarter. As a result, NADAguides analysts suggest it may be an indication that domestic brand sales may see a decrease in the near future.

Consumer interest in Japanese brands increased by 1.8 percent on the Website, while sales numbers for the brands dropped 3.5 percent. NADAguides analysts attribute some of this disparity to production disruption and vehicle shortages due to the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami.