Australia 1969-1976: Ford catches up on Holden, a Datsun on the podium
* See the 1970-1973 yearly brands rankings & many more vintage pictures by clicking on the title! *
Thanks to the help of the State Library of Sydney I have been able to continue searching through old Wheels magazines to share with you the evolution of the Australian car market over the past 60 years. Today we're exploring the 7 years between 1969 and 1976.
This period saw Holden and Ford get closer, while Chrysler maintained itself in third position at around 10% of the market. Japanese brands get stronger and stronger: Toyota led the pack in 1970 before being passed by Datsun in 1972.
For the very first time in 1973 models data becomes available: the Holden is #1 with 94,419 sales, ahead of the Ford Falcon at 62,352 units. The Datsun 1200/1600/180B ranks at an excellent third place with 36,723 sales, just above the Holden Torana at 36,366 units.
The Toyota Corona/Corolla/Celica takes the 5th spot with 34,650 sales, followed by the Ford Cortina/Escort/Capri at 31,828 and the Chrysler Valiant at 31,721. Mazda ranks #9. Other successful Japanese brands over the period include Honda at #11 in 1972. Subarus and Mitsubishis also feature quite regularly on Wheels Magazine at that time.
The Renault 12 won the title of Wheels Car of the Year in 1971 but sales of French models stayed confidential during the period, with Peugeot and Renault adding up to a meagre 1.7% market share in 1972.
Previous 'Japan special' post: Australia 1958-1968: Toyota and Japan’s first export market
Previous general post: Australia 1960-1968: Ford unveils Falcon to challenge Holden
Full Year 1970, 1971, 1972 Top 10 Brands, 1973 Top 10 Models Ranking Tables below.