Australia Full Year 2016: Toyota Hilux first ever “ute” to lead annual sales

Toyota Hilux Australia 2015The Toyota Hilux takes command in Australia for the first time in history.

* NOW UDPATED with the Top 70 All-brands and Top 400 All-models – see title *

Check out 70 years worth of Australian Historical Data here

Australian new vehicle sales set an all-time record volume for the second year running and the fourth time in the past five years, up 2% or almost 23.000 units on 2015 to 1.178.133. Yet if in 2015 the record was considered “healthy”, this year private sales are down sharply at -7% to 571.544 to fall from 52.5% share a year ago down to 48.5% this time. The market growth comes solely from business sales up a whopping 13% year-on-year to 472.156 and 40.1% share (35.9% in 2015) as well as rental sales up 6% to 60.335 and 5.1% of the market. Government sales are down 1.4% to 40.989. A methodology note: private buyers using their ABN (Australian Business Number) to buy a single car count as a business sale, while novated leases count as private. All in all, it’s the good health of the Australian economy that has lifted the car market up this year, not the appetite of private buyers.

Hyundai Tucson Australia 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auSUV sales are up 8% year-on-year in Australia, passenger cars down 6%.

The main trend at play in the Australian market and symbolised by the new #1 model (see further down), is the shift towards recreational vehicles and away from traditional passenger cars. Light commercials (mainly composed of pickup trucks – nicknamed “utes” in Australia) are up a splendid 9.4% year-on-year in 2016 to hit 217.400 sales and 18.5% share while SUV sales are up 8% to 441.100 and 37.4% share (35.4% in 2015). These two segments now hold a commanding 55.9% of the Australian new vehicle market vs. 52.6% last year. Passenger cars on the other hand are down 5.7% to 486.600 units or 41.3% share vs. 44.6% in 2015. The most popular segments are small cars (224,450 sales, down 4%), medium SUV (172.194, up 16.5%), 4×4 ute (146.820, up 10%), large SUV (142.495, up 2%) and small SUV (110.413, up 2%).

Toyota Corolla Australia 2016With the Corolla at #2, Toyota is the first ever carmaker to manage an annual 1-2 in Australia.

Looking at sales in each State, only two lose volume compared to 2015. New South Wales/Sydney continues to dominate at 397.563 registrations and also lodges the largest year-on-year increase at +4.4%. It is followed by Victoria/Melbourne at 326.269 (+3.4%), Queensland/Brisbane at 233.026 (-1.1%), Western Australia/Perth at 100.234 (-5.6%), South Australia/Adelaide at 71.738 (+3.9%), Tasmania at 19.751 (+0.3%), Australian Capital Territory at 18.816 (+4.3%) and Northern Territory at 10.736 (+2%). With Ford ending local manufacturing in October this year and both Holden and Toyota set to do so in 2017, Australia has slipped below Germany to become only the #5 new vehicle source country. Japan leads with 325.689 units (-3%) ahead of Thailand at 285.465 (+14%), South Korea at 162.642 (+16%), Germany at 87.392 (-0.6%) with Australia lagging behind at 87.096 homemade sales, down 11% on 2015. This figure will be zero in 2018.

mazda-cx-9-australia-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auMazda is up 3.7% to reach a record 10% market share in Australia. 

With sales up 3.1% to 209.610, Toyota marks 20 years in the Australian pole position, including the past 14 straight years. This is the fifth year in a row and the 12th time in the past 13 years that Toyota is above 200.000 annual Australian sales (record: 238,983 in 2008), with no other carmaker managing to break this milestone in the country. The Japanese carmaker is leader in every State and Territory. In 2nd place like last year – the brand’s highest ranking in the world, we find pure importer Mazda, up another 3.7% to reach record volumes (118.217) and market share at a round 10%. Mazda even outsold Toyota in SUV sales in September despite having only three models in its SUV lineup (CX-3, CX-5, CX-9) vs. more than double for Toyota.

Hyundai i30 Australia 2016. Picture courtesy of caradvice.com.auThe Hyundai i30 incredibly led the year-to-date charts halfway through 2016.

Hyundai drops 0.4% but is up one spot to jump onto the Australian annual podium for the first time since its introduction in the country in 1986, “posing little threat” according to the local specialised press. Behind these stable sales hides a historical year for Hyundai: the i30 was the best-selling nameplate in Australia overall for an incredible four consecutive months between March and June and even led the YTD ranking half-way through the year. However depleting stock of the current generation meant it had to recede to third place overall – still the nameplate’s best ever annual finish, above the Mazda3. Local brand Holden is kicked out of the annual podium for the first time ever in Australia, down 8.4% to 94.308 sales. Ford on the other hand has turned around its sinking fortunes in a spectacular manner, up 15.3% to 81.207 sales this year and bypassing Mitsubishi (+2.3%) to rank 5th.

Kia Sportage Australia 2016Kia surges 26.5% to break into the annual Australian Top 10 for the first time. 

Subaru continues to impress with a 7.8% gain to remain in 9th position, now threatening Volkswagen (-6.1%). But Kia is by far the most impressive performer in the Australian Top 20 this year: up 26.5% to break into the annual Top 10 for the very first time, stealing this honour from Mercedes (+13.3%), still the luxury king. BMW (+12%), Isuzu Ute (+11.4%), Land Rover (+14.4%), Volvo (+18.9%), Infiniti (+40.6%), LDV (+101%) and Jaguar (+132.8%) also impress. We welcome two new manufacturers in Australia in 2016: American pickup maker Ran landing at #37 with 292 sales and Chinese SUV specialist Haval at #38 with 286.

Toyota Camry Australia 2016The Toyota Camry outsells the Holden Commodore to become #1 Aussie-made. 

Over in the models ranking, the Toyota Hilux surges 20% to snap the annual pole position off its stablemate the Toyota Corolla – leader for the past three consecutive years. This is a historical win for the Hilux, the first time it ends the year in pole position in Australia and the first time a commercial vehicle (more recreational in fact these days) takes the annual lead in the country. This victory comes as the Hilux is under intense pressure from the Ford Ranger, up an even more impressive 27% to nudge up one spot to a best-ever 4th place overall this year. Interestingly, 2016 isn’t the Hilux’s best year at 42.104 sales: it sold 42.956 units in 2008, the year it first hit #1 in the monthly sales charts – in April and October. Its 2016 wins rewards consistency as the Hilux only topped the monthly charts twice this year vs. 3 times for the Toyota Corolla and 4 times for the Hyundai i30, the other nameplates on the 2016 podium. The Hilux also ends up narrowly winning the 4×4 ute battle opposing it to the Ford Ranger at 31.076 sales vs. 30.880, whereas the Ranger was still in the lead at end-November.

mazda-cx-5-australia-2016-picture-courtesy-wheelsmag-com-auThe Mazda CX-5 is the #1 SUV in Australia for the 4th straight year. 

In 2016, Toyota places the Hilux and Corolla in the top two spots. Although this seems entirely logical given the brand’s domination over the Australian market, it is actually the first time in history that one brand delivers an annual 1-2. Market leader in 2011 and 2012, the Mazda3 plunges down four spots to a paltry 5th position. The Toyota Camry (-4%) becomes the best-selling Aussie-made nameplate for the very first time in history, dislodging the Holden Commodore (-7%) thanks to a fleet-filled December when it ranked #1 overall, just like a year ago. The Mazda CX-5 is the best-selling SUV in Australia for the fourth consecutive year, climbing up to a best-ever 8th place overall despite sales tilting down 2% to 24.564: incredibly, the CX-5 has led the SUV category each full year it has been in market here. This time it is followed by the Hyundai Tucson, up 4-fold on 2015 to end its first full year of sales at a stunning 11th position, already better than anything the Hyundai ix35 did before it (PB of 19.086 sales and #12 in 2013)…

Previous month: Australia November 2016: Hilux vs. Ranger the new iconic battle

Previous year: Australia Full Year 2015: Mazda first full importer to #2 in record market and The best-sellers State by State

Two years ago: Australia 2014: Toyota Corolla holds onto top spot, and The best-sellers State by State

Full Year 2016 Top 70 All-brands and Top 400 All-models vs. Full Year 2015 figures below.

Full December 2016 Top 15 brands and Top 10 models below.

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Australia: 1984-2016 Nameplates records now available

Holden Commodore SS Australia 1998The Holden Commodore sold a record 94.642 units in Australia in 1998.

* See the Top 75 most successful nameplates in Australia by clicking on the title *

This ranking has now been updated with 2016 figures and official sales data spanning the past 33 years. In 2016, the Toyota Hilux becomes only the 5th nameplate to finish the year at #1 after the Holden Commodore, Ford Falcon, Mazda3 and Toyota Corolla. The Hyundai i30 (37.772 sales) and Ford Ranger (36.934) both break their annual volume records and now rank among the nation’s 10 most successful nameplate, knocking the Ford Laser and Holden Astra out. The Mazda CX-5 hits a record 8th place, while the Hyundai Tucson, Toyota RAV4, Hyundai Accent, Mazda CX-3, Mitsubishi ASX, Isuzu D-Max, Mazda BT-50, Kia Cerato, Honda HR-V, Mitsubishi Outlander and Nissan Qashqai all post record volumes in 2016.

Check out 70 years worth of Australian Historical Data here

Toyota Hilux Australia 2016. Picture courtesy of caradvice.com.auThe Ford Ranger is only the 5th nameplate to rank #1 in the past 33 years.

The original post starts here: Now that year-end detailed models rankings for Australia are available without interruption since 1984, I can give you a summary of the most popular nameplates over the period. They are ranked by yearly volume record, with info on their record market share and position also included. No surprise on top: the Holden Commodore holds the nameplate all-time record with 94.642 units sold in 1998. It’s fair to say that this record is in safe hands: with the fragmentation of the market, last year’s leader has sold just under 44.000 units.

The Ford Falcon holds the Australian market share record in the past 30 years at 15.3%.

Note that the Commodore’s market share record is a nowadays-impossible 12.8% reached in 1996, while the Ford Falcon, whose volume record was reached in 1995 (81.366), holds the all-time market share record at 15.3% in 1987. The Toyota Corolla is the third most popular nameplate in Australia over the past 33 years with a record of 47.901 sales in 2008. The Mazda3 follows, ahead of the Hyundai Excel, Toyota Hilux and Camry and Mitsubishi Magna.

Toyota Corolla in Broken Hill, Australia – April 2008

See the Top 75 most successful nameplates in Australia in 1984-2016 below.

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Australia November 2016: Hilux vs. Ranger the new iconic battle

ford-ranger-toyota-hilux-australia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-autocar-co-nzThe Toyota Hilux and Ford Ranger are the two Australian best-sellers again in November.

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 15 best-selling brands and Top 285 All-models – see title *

The October 2016 post has now been updated with the Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models.

Despite a stable score in November – up 0.3% year-on-year to 98.937 registrations, the Australian new car market is headed towards a second consecutive annual record at 1.079.370 units year-to-date, up 2% on the same period in 2015. SUVs, accounting for 38% of the market, and light commercials (19%) are once again the engines of growth in Australia just as the passenger car segment continues to falter at just 40% share in a market biased by business purchases. Private sales fall flat once again at -5% to 47.335 while business sales are up 8% to 39.172. Government purchases (down 3% to 3.593) and rental sales (down 2.5% to 5.880) struggle also. In the segment detail, the most popular are small cars (17.4% share), medium SUVs (16.2%), 4×4 utes/pickups (12.9%) and large SUVs (11.7%).

toyota-hilux-australia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auIn one month, the Toyota Hilux could become the first ever ute to top annual Australian sales. 

The most dynamic states are Northern Territory (up 10% to 808 sales), Tasmania (up 7% to 1.903), Victoria (up 6% to 28.991), Australian Capital Territory (up 5% to 1.631) and South Australia (up 4% to 6.259). Declining states are New South Wales (down 0.7% to 32.995), Queensland (down 3% to 18.733) and Western Australia (down 12% to 7.657) more and more affected by the mining slump. Where do cars sold in Australia come from? Primarily Japan (27.307 units), Thailand (24.738), South Korea (13.352), home-made (7.486), Germany (7.469), the U.S.A. (4.029) and the UK (2.440).

ford-ranger-australia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-4x4australia-com-auThe Ford Ranger had never ranked #2 in Australia before last month. It’s now twice in a row. 

Brand-wise, Toyota remains and by far master in command despite sales skidding down 1% to 18.162 units, that’s still more than its next two followers combined. Mazda is stable (+0.2%) in 2nd place, but this hides an Australian first for the Japanese carmaker: for the first time in its history, every Mazda SUV and passenger car ranks first, second or third in their respective segments in November. The CX-9 notably, is a smashing success, outselling both the Toyota Kluger and Holden Captiva this month. Mazda is the 2nd best-selling SUV brand in November with its three nameplates selling 4.280 units vs. 4.976 for Toyota that has twice as many models in this segment.

mazda-cx-9-australia-november-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auThe new generation Mazda CX-9 is an instant blockbuster in Australia.

Hyundai is down 5% to 8.1% share but remains solidly anchored to the YTD third place, on its way to post its first ever annual podium finish in Australia. Holden freefalls 13% to just 7.8% and Ford is up 8% to 6.9% share in fifth place just as the Falcon ends 56 years of Australian production. Mitsubishi (+14%), Volkswagen (+10%), Mercedes (+18%), Kia (+19%) and Honda (+14%) post the largest sales gains in the Top 15. Among smaller brands, Jaguar (+26%), LDV (+30%) and Ferrari (+229%) impress, whereas Jeep (-13%), Alfa Romeo (-55%), Peugeot (-56%) and Ssangyong (-70%) suffer. Newcomers Haval (47 units) and Ram (16) remain very discreet while comeback kid Great Wall sells 45 units of its Steed in November.

Ford-Falcon-Holden-Australia-1960The Ford Falcon (1960-2016)

In a telling sign of changing Australian tastes, two utes (Australian slang for pick-up trucks) dominate the overall sales charts in November, for the second consecutive month and ever. The Toyota Hilux wins again at 3.839 units vs. 3.410 for the Ford Ranger. This month, the Hilux dominates both 4×2 Ute sales at 934 vs. 590 for the Ranger and 4×4 Utes at 2.905 vs. 2.820, but the Ranger is ahead year-to-date as far as 4×4 Utes are concerned with 28.009 vs. 27.851 for the Hilux. In the overall YTD charts, the Toyota Hilux remains in the pole position with 38.018 units sold so far in 2016 and is on track to become the first ute to ever top the Australian annual sales charts. For perspective, this means the Hilux on its own is currently selling similar numbers as brands such as Kia, Mercedes and Honda… The fact that the majority of Hilux and Ranger are sold as 4×4 dual cabs with an average transaction price of above $50,000 gives an idea of how popular these two vehicles are in Australia.

Previous month: Australia October 2016: Two pickups (utes) on top for the first time

One year ago: Australia November 2015: Nissan shines in strongest November ever

Full November 2016 Top 15 brands and Top 285 models ranking tables below.

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Australia October 2016: Two pickups (utes) on top for the first time

toyota-hilux-ford-ranger-australia-october-2016-picture-courtesy-youtube-comLeaning towards the American market: Australia.

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models – click on title to see *

October sales in Australia are disappointing: down 1% year-on-year to 93.357 units, however the year-to-date tally is still at all-time record heights, up 2.4% on 2015 to 980.433. That’s 23.000 more sales than at the same time last year. Passenger cars, down 7.4% to 37.817 registrations, seem irremediably destined to be overtaken by SUVs, up another 4.9% to 36.442, the smallest gap between the two categories so far in Australia, while light commercials are up a tiny 0.4% to 16.098. Once again, the news isn’t good in the private sales aisle, indicating a growing shyness of every day consumers at -3.5% to 42.643, compensated by business sales doing the heavy lifting at +2.6% to 38.299.

Hyundai Tucson Australia October 2016The Hyundai Tucson is the best-selling SUV in Australia in October. 

Only three States manage an increase: Tasmania up 13% to 1.937, Victoria up 4% to 27.546 and New South Wales up 2% to 31.850. Reversely, South Australia is down 6% to 5.450, the Australian Capital Territory down 7% to 1.411, Queensland down 7.5% to 16.870, Northern Territory down 9% to 713 and Western Australia once again the most affected due to the slowing down of mining activity at -11% to 7.580. In October Australia bought 25.662 new vehicles imported from Japan, 21.244 from Thailand, 13.891 from South Korea, bought 7.179 Australia-made cars and 7.518 made in Germany. Ford, stopping local manufacturing this month, is down 11% to 1.099 Australia-made sales in October but the two other local carmakers (until 2017) are up: Holden at 3.609 (+10.5%) and Toyota at 2.471 (+3.6%).

Kia Sportage Australia October 2016Australian Kia sales are up 24% in October, enabling the brand to return inside the Top 10.

In the overall brands ranking, Toyota remains in control at 17.5% share (-4%), with Hyundai overtaking Mazda for 2nd place at 9.3% share (-3%) vs. 8.5% (-7%), Holden (-7%) and Ford (+7%) rounding up the Top 5. Ford is up 17% year-to-date whereas Holden is down 7%. Volkswagen (+9%), Subaru (+1%) and Kia (+24%) are the other manufacturers posting positive results inside the Top 10. Further down, Mercedes surges up 33%, Renault is up 43% thanks to the all-new Koleos, Skoda is up 15%, Fiat up 20%, Mini up 19%, Jaguar up 64% and Bentley up 125%. Jeep (-38%), Alfa Romeo (-43%), Peugeot (-50%), Foton (-51%) and Chrysler (-59%) struggle.

Mercedes GLC Australia October 2016Mercedes surges 33% this month.

But the big event this month is the 1-2 signed by utes – Australian slang for pickup trucks – the first time in Australian history this happens. The Toyota Hilux is the outright best-selling vehicle in the country, selling 3.352 vs. 3.339 a year ago in October 2015 when it also ranked #1. This enables the Hilux to reclaim the #1 year-to-date position off its stablemate the Toyota Corolla for just 21 sales at 34.179 (+19%) vs. 34.158 (-3%). Of concern though for Toyota (once again) is the outstanding performance of the Ford Ranger, soaring 24% to 3.217 units in 2nd place. This is the Ranger’s best-ever monthly ranking in Australia, its previous best being #3, hit four times in 2016. This performance lifts Ford’s ute up to #4 year-to-date below the Hyundai i30, overtaking the Mazda3 for the first time.

renault-koleos-australia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auRenault is up 43% thanks to the new Koleos, and now outsells Peugeot 7-to-1. 

The Toyota Camry climbs back up 5 spots to #6 and #1 Australia-made nameplate above the Holden Commodore (#7). Like last month, Hyundai manages to place three nameplates inside the Top 10 with the Accent up 30% to #8 and the Tucson up 119% to lead the SUV segment at #9 and 1.845 sales, partly thanks to sharply-priced 30th anniversary-badged version that celebrates the brand’s three decades in Australia. The Tucson distances the Nissan X-Trail (+3%), Mitsubishi ASX (+52%) and Mazda CX-5 (-21%), the traditional SUV leader, coming down after M-day boosted October sales.

great-wall-steed-australia-october-2016-picture-courtesy-whichcar-com-auGreat Wall is back in Australia with the Steed pickup. 

Other great performers include the Kia Cerato (+32%), Toyota Land Cruiser (+36%), Kia Sportage (+111%), Mazda CX-9 up a spectacular 260% year-on-year to #33 overall thanks to the new model, the VW Tiguan (+131%), Honda Civic (+85%) and Mercedes GLA (+178%). The Ford Mustang leads new launches (<12 months) at #46 ahead of the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (#64), Mercedes GLC (#67), Suzuki Baleno (#90), Subaru Levorg (#102) and Kia Picanto (#108) while the Fiat 124 Spider shoots up 111 spots on last month to #155. This month marks the return of Great Wall in the Australian sales charts, now as a pickup-only brand with the Steed landing at #235, sister company Haval for its part launches the H6 – the best-selling SUV in China – at #252.

Previous month: Australia September 2016: Corolla in YTD lead, Mazda #1 SUV brand

One year ago: Australia October 2015: New generation pushes Toyota Hilux to #1

Full September 2016 Top 15 brands and Top 285 All-models below.

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Australia September 2016: Corolla in YTD lead, Mazda #1 SUV brand

Toyota Corolla Australia September 2016The Toyota Corolla is now #1 year-to-date in Australia. 

* NOW UPDATED with the Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models *

The Australian new car market sees no respite in 2016: up another 1.3% year-on-year in September to an all-time high 102.696 sales, lifting the year-to-date tally up 2.8% or 24.000 sales on the previous record of 2015 to 887.076 units. However, over this shiny lid hides a not-so-happy situation: for the third consecutive month, the market is solely boosted by fleet sales up 14% to 41.543 whereas private sales are down a paltry 8% to 48.171. The shift towards SUVs (+7%) and light commercials – mainly pickup trucks (“utes”) used as SUVs (+18%) and away from passenger cars (-9%) continues. Looking at data by state, South Australia at +12% to 6.551, Northern Territory at +12% to 880, Victoria at +4% to 28.766, ACT at +2% to 1.631 and New South Wales at +1% to 34.424 post positive scores but Tasmania at -1% to 2.074, Queensland at -3% to 19.702 and Western Australia at -4% to 8.688 struggle. In September Australia bought 28.294 new cars imported from Japan, 25.654 from Thailand, 14.595 from South Korea, 7.813 from Germany, 7.659 were made in Australia, 4.364 from the USA, 3.028 from the UK, 1.572 from Spain, 1.117 from South Africa and 1.070 from Hungary.

Toyota Hilux Australia September 2016. Picture courtesy of caradvice.com.auToyota Hilux sales are up 60% year-on-year but its 4×4 variant is outsold by the Ford Ranger.

Toyota remains in command of the Australian brands ranking with a slim 1% uptick to 16.716 sales and 16.3% share, but Mazda does a lot better at +11% to 12.009 and a strong 11.7% share – its highest since January (11.9%) – thanks to its annual ‘M Day’ sales. Hyundai (+0.1%) is back up two spots on August to the #3 rank it holds year-to-date and manages to place three nameplates inside the September Top 10 vs. just two for Toyota: the i30 at #5 (-39%), the Tucson at #9 (+303%) and the Accent at #10 (+127%). Just below, we find Holden still struggling at -8% while Ford continues its spectacular recovery at +25% to 7.280 units and 7.1% share.

hyundai-tucson-australia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auThe Tucson is one of 3 Hyundais in the September Top 10. Toyota and Mazda have just two. 

Mitsubishi (-3%), Nissan (-1%) and Volkswagen (-15%) follow but all struggle while Subaru (+12%), Honda (+5%), Kia (+23%) and Mercedes (+5%) all shine. Other great gainers in September include Lamborghini (+67%), LDV (+73%), Infiniti (+82%) and Jaguar (+90%) while at the other end of the stick we find Chrysler (-55%), Jeep (-57%), Ssangyong (-60%), Alfa Romeo (-67%) and Dodge (-77%): 4 out of 5 belonging to the FCA Group. Recently-launched Haval (#34) and Ram (#39) remain discreet.

mazda-cx-5-australia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-wheelsmag-com-auThe CX-5 helps make Mazda the #1 SUV brand in Australia in September. 

Looking at passenger cars only, the best-selling brands are Toyota (6.988), Hyundai (5.952), Mazda (5.467), Holden (4.234), Ford (2.670), Kia (2.393), Volkswagen (2.274), Honda (2.015), Mercedes-Benz (2.011) and Subaru (1.297). In the SUV aisle, Mazda manages the historical feat to outsell Toyota at 5.181 deliveries vs. 5.021, followed by Mitsubishi (3.768), Nissan (3.467), Hyundai (2.913), Subaru (2.753), Holden (2.242), Honda (1.768), Ford (1.435) and Kia (1.294).

mazda3-australia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auThe Mazda3 lodges its first Australian pole position since January.

Helped by the ‘M Day’ promotion, the Mazda3 is the best-selling nameplate in the country in September and for the first time since January with 3.491 sales. That’s only 68 more than the Toyota Corolla which celebrates its 50th anniversary  – the nameplate was launched in October 1966 – by reclaiming the year-to-date lead off the Toyota Hilux up 60% to 3.209. While the Corolla has been Australia’s best-seller for the past 3 years, an annual Hilux pole position would make it the first ever ute to achieve that feat. Only 121 units separate the two Toyota nameplates atop the YTD ranking after 9 months.

renault-koleos-australia-september-2016-picture-courtesy-caradvice-com-auAustralia is the first country in the world to get the new generation Renault Koleos. 

The Ford Ranger (+17%) sells 2.903 units but beats the Hilux in the lucrative 4×4 ute segment at 2.451 vs. 2.311 with the Mitsubishi Triton in third place at 2.012. The Hyundai i30 is back up to #5 despite sales down 39% and holds onto its third spot in the YTD ranking at 29.678 below just the Toyota Corolla (30.948) and Hilux (30.827). The Mazda CX-5 manages a brilliant 15% increase to rank 6th overall, with the Mazda CX-3 also extremely robust at +27% to #12 and the Mitsubishi ASX also posting a 27% year-on-year gain to #13. Among recent launches, notice the Renault Koleos (+260%), Honda Civic (+170%), VW Tiguan (+49%), Suzuki Baleno (243 sales) and Jaguar F-Pace (172 units).

Previous month: Australia August 2016: Toyota surges 29%, fleet and rental sales strong

One year ago: Australia September 2015: Hyundai i30 leads for 2nd time in 4 months

Full September 2016 Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models below.

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Australia August 2016: Toyota surges 29%, fleet and rental sales strong

Toyota Land Cruiser Australia August 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.au Toyota is up 29% and the Land Cruiser up 106%. Picture caradvice.com.au

* Now updated with the Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models – click on title to see *

On paper, the Australian new vehicle market has enjoyed a balmy end of winter with August sales up 4.6% year-on-year to 94.909 units, keeping the year-to-date tally at a record-breaking 784.380 registrations, up 3% on the same period a year ago. Looking into sales by channel though, alarm bells continue to ring as it was already the case in July. The market growth is solely sustained by business fleet sales and rental sales whereas private sales are plummeting. August fleets are up a very generous 21.5% to 38.738 and rentals are up 24.5% to 6.203 but private purchases freefall 8.3% to 43.802 As these are a more accurate barometer of consumer confidence, the truth is the sky isn’t all that sunny after all in Australia. SUV and light commercial sales continue to outpace the market at the detriment of passenger cars, with respective market shares now standing at 38.3%, 17.6% and 41%.

Ford Ranger Australia August 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auFord sales are up another 28% in August, riding on the success of the Ranger. 

The best performing states are Northern Territory (Darwin) up 15% to 881 registrations, South Australia (Adelaide) up 14% to 5.785 and Victoria (Melbourne) up 10% to 27.096. New South Wales up 4% to 31.788 and Tasmania (Hobart) up 2% to 1.743 are close to the national average whereas declining states are Queensland (Brisbane) down 1% to 18.062, ACT (Canberra) down 3% to 1.410 and Western Australia (Perth) down 3% and suffering again from the deceleration of the mining industry. The most popular sources of vehicles sold in Australia this month are Japan (27.346), Thailand (22.783), Korea (12.324), Australia (7.389), Germany (6.667), the USA (4.695), the UK (3.042), Spain (1257), South Africa (1248) and Hungary (911).

Kia Sportage Australia August 2016Kia leaps 26% to equal its best-ever ranking in Australia at #9. 

In the brands ranking, Toyota stuns with a gigantic 29% year-on-year gain to 18.650 sales and a mammoth 19.7% market share – to be compared to 17.7% year-to-date – more than double its immediate follower Mazda, up a timid 1% to 9.258 and 9.8%. Holden (-3%) gets back one spot to #4 as does Ford (+28%) boosted again by the Ranger. This is the result of the crumbling apart of Hyundai (-31%) now that the i30 stock is depleting ahead of the launch of the new model in early 2017. Mitsubishi (+10%) and Nissan (+19%) drive faster than the market whereas Volkswagen falls flat (-19%). Kia reiterates its exceptional (not anymore) performance of last month by ranking at historical best 9th spot with 3.9% share thanks to deliveries up a whopping 26%.

Toyota Corolla Australia August 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Toyota Corolla is #1 in Australia for the second month running. Picture caradvice.com.au 

Looking at the passenger cars segment in particular, the Top 10 brands in August are Toyota (7.793), Mazda (4.232), Hyundai (3.957), Holden (3.690), Volkswagen (2.649), Kia (2.407), Ford (2.242), Mercedes (1.981), Honda (1.592) and Audi (1.404). Best-selling SUV brands are Toyota (5.985) followed for once by Mitsubishi (4.022), then Mazda (3.963), Nissan (3.260), Subaru (2.349), Hyundai (2.233), Holden (1.983), Honda (1.498), Kia (1.303) and, surprisingly, BMW (1.262). In the light commercials aisle – keeping in mind pickup trucks are within this category in Australia – the most popular marques are Toyota (4.872), Ford (3.324), Holden (1.994), Mitsubishi (1.321), Nissan (1.312), Isuzu Ute (1.108), Mazda (1.063), Volkswagen (849) and Hyundai (346).

Haval Dealership Australia August 2016Chinese Haval appears for the first time in Australian sales charts. 

Outside the Top 10, Mercedes pushes up 11% to #11, Jeep implodes at -40% while Lexus (+11%), Mini (+19%), Volvo (+50%), Infiniti (+80%) and Jaguar (+202%) lead the rampant premiumisation of the Australian market. Even more exclusive, McLaren (+25%), Lamborghini (+63%), Bentley (+217%), Rolls-Royce (+300%) and Lotus (+325) all find many more customers than a year ago. After almost one year in market, Chinese SUV specialist Haval makes its grand entrance inside the Australian sales charts at #32 with 52 sales, coinciding with the brand’s first national TV advertising campaign. Haval’s lineup in Australia is composed of the H2 (#213), H8 (#234 – I took one on the Birdsville track) and H9 (#230), with the H6 Coupe just launched to the press. Haval directly places just below fellow Chinese carmakers LDV (140) and Foton (62) while Chery (1) has all but disappeared and Great Wall awaits its renaissance with the new Wingle 6 later this year.

Toyota Hilux Australia August 2016The Toyota Hilux is now #1 model year-to-date in Australia.

In the models ranking, Toyota has the top two best-sellers (Corolla and Hilux) and there in the top five (Camry). The Corolla (+17%) is crowned for the 2nd straight month, the Hilux surges 69% thanks to the new generation and reclaims the #1 YTD spot. The Ford Ranger continues to impress at +41% and #3 but remains #5 YTD for now. Note the Hilux 4×4 is back above the Ranger 4×4 this month at 2.418 vs. 2.364. Hero of 2016’s First Half, the Hyundai i30 drops 11% to #8 and as a result slides from #1 to #3 YTD. Despite sales down 4%, the Mazda CX-5 remains the most popular SUV in Australia (#6) but the Mitsubishi ASX at #9 (+79%), Toyota RAV4 at #10 (+25%) and Hyundai Tucson at #11 (+324%) and Nissan X-Trail at #13 (+47%) are catching up fast.

Ford Mustang Australia August 2016The Ford Mustang ranks #40 in Australia in August. 

Further down the Toyota Land Cruiser (+106%) lodes its best month in over 12 years (since June 2004) at #15 with 1.350 sales, the Mitsubishi Outlander is up 33% to #20 vs. #32 YTD, the  Honda Civic is lifted up 216% by the new generation to #34 vs. #60 so far this year, the Mazda CX-9 is up 96% to #38 vs. #96, the Ford Mustang confirms its incredible success at #40: the best-selling Ford nameplate after the Ranger and the most popular new launch in Australia. Among the seven additional new launches (<12 months) in the Top 100 – an illustration of the dynamism of the Australia market – notice the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (#45), Mercedes GLC (#74), Toyota Fortuner (#79) and Ford Everest (#84). The Jaguar F-Pace paces up from #152 for its inaugural month in July to #108 in August, already accounting for 58% of the brand’s sales in Australia…

Previous month: Australia July 2016: Corolla back to #1, Hilux and Ranger fight

One year ago: Australia August 2015: Hyundai overtakes Holden year-to-date

Full August 2016 Top 50 All-brands and Top 285 All-models below.

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Australia July 2016: Corolla back to #1, Hilux and Ranger fight

Toyota Corolla Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auDespite sales down 4%, the Toyota Corolla is back to #1 in Australia in July.

* See the Top 50 All-brands and Top 280 All-models by clicking on the title *

The Australian new vehicle market marks a pause in July with deliveries down 1% to 91.331 units, yet the year-to-date tally is still evolving at record heights, up 3% over the same period last year to 689.471. More worryingly, private sales cripple the overall market at -13% to 41.594, with the minimal fall only due to very dynamic sales for business fleets (+12% to 38.222) and rental (+35% to 5.797) while government sales are down 7% to 3.111. SUVs (37% market share) and LCVs (18.5%) continue to be the sole engines of growth, with passenger cars down from 44.9% share a year ago to 41.6%.

Toyota Hilux Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Toyota Hilux is up 22% to #2… 

All Australian states/territories post year-on-year declines, albeit mostly moderate: New South Wales (Sydney) is down 0.4% to 30.219, Northern Territory (Darwin) down 0.6% to 831, Australian Capital Territory (Canberra) down 0.7% to 1.486, South Australia (Adelaide) down 0.9% to 5.210, Western Australia (Perth) down 1.3% to 8.234, Queensland (Brisbane) down 1.4% to 18.445 and Victoria (Melbourne) down 1.5% to 25.517. Only Tasmania (Hobart) posts a significant 3.9% drop to 1.389 registrations. Illustrating to “ute” sales boom (Australian slang for pickup truck), Australia’s #1 car country source in July is Thailand for the first time at 23.803 sales (+26%), bypassing traditional leader Japan at 23.359 (-11%), both ahead of South Korea at 12.782 (+16%), Australia at 6.945 (-11%), Germany at 6.598 (-10%), the U.S. at 4.139 (-9%) and the U.K. at 3.019 (+8%).

Ford Ranger Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.au…but the Ford Ranger is threatening: up 43% to #3 in July. 

Brand-wise, Toyota goes against the grain and manages a 4% year-on-year lift to 17.465 sales and 19.1% share, well ahead of the 17.4% it commends year-to-date. Mazda (-10%), Hyundai (-11%) and Holden (-10%) follow, replicating the YTD order but all losing market share. Reversely, Ford surges 20% to 6.894 sales and 7.5% share, distancing Mitsubishi (+4%), Nissan (+7%) and Volkswagen (-15%). When only looking at passenger cars, the best-selling brands are Toyota (7.232), Hyundai (5.059), Holden (3.597), Mazda (3.227) and Volkswagen (2.796) whereas in the popular SUV aisle it’s Toyota (5.869), Mazda (4.116), Mitsubishi (2.885), Nissan (2.767) and Hyundai (2.079).

Kia Cerato Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auKia is up 30% to a record #9. 

Further down, Kia stuns, posting the largest year-on-year gain in the Top 25 with deliveries up a huge 30% to 3.555 for a 3.9% market share in 9th position. To BSCB’s knowledge, this is Kia’s highest ever Australian monthly ranking. Other impressive carmakers include Isuzu Ute (+20%), Foton (+20%), Volvo (+22%), Ferrari (+42%), LDV (+56%), Bentley (+75%), Jaguar (+250%) and McLaren (+260%). At the other end of the scale, struggling manufacturers include Renault (-32%), Fiat (-35%), Chrysler (-47%), Jeep (-57%), Ssangyong (-67%), Alfa Romeo (-69%), Dodge (-76%) and Proton (-90%).

Volvo XC90 Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auVolvo is up 22% thanks to the XC90.

After an incredible four consecutive months of Hyundai i30 reign, the Toyota Corolla reclaims the title of best-selling vehicle in Australia for the first time since last February even though it drops 4% year-on-year to 3.427 sales. The Toyota Hilux follows in 2nd place with deliveries up a solid 22% thanks to the new generation, but the Ford Ranger gains more ground at +43% despite now being “older” than the Hilux. In the more profitable 4×4 ute aisle, the Ranger even outsells the Hilux at 2.357 vs. 2.311… With stock of the current generation now clearing, the Hyundai i30 drops 3 spots on June to #4 and 19% y-o-y to 2.216 sales but retains the YTD crown for now at 25.073 (+35%) vs. 24.307 (+14%) for the Hilux and 23.971 (-5%) for the Corolla.

Jaguar F-Pace Australia July 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Jaguar F-Pace is destined to a great career in Australia. 

The Toyota Camry is up two ranks on last month to #5, the Mazda CX-5 remains the best-selling SUV in the country at #6 overall ahead of the Toyota RAV at #8 (+18%) and the Mazda CX-3 at #9 (+36%), its highest ever ranking in Australia, also hit last April. The Hyundai Accent (+145%) continues to benefit from the discontinuation of the i20 and ranks #10, the Mazda3 halts (-47%) at #14, the Hyundai Tucson is back up to #15 and the Toyota Land Cruiser gains 55% to #19. Further down, the Honda Civic is up 222% to #24 thanks to the new generation, the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport is up 10 spots on June to #41, the Ford Mustang up 37 to #44, Toyota Fortuner up 18 to #50 and Audi Q7 up 23 to #66. For its second month in market, the Suzuki Baleno is up 168 ranks to #110 and we welcome two new nameplates in the Australian sales charts in July: the Jaguar F-Pace storming into the ranking at #152 and the Infiniti Q30/QX30 arriving at #228 with sales limited to Melbourne for now.

Previous post: Australia First Half 2016: Hyundai i30 takes charge in record market

Previous month: Australia June 2016: Hyundai i30 tops biggest month ever

One year ago: Australia July 2015: Mazda boosted above 10% share by CX-3 and CX-5

Full July 2016 Top 50 All-brands and Top 280 All-models below.

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Australia First Half 2016: Hyundai i30 takes charge in record market

Hyundai i30 Australia June 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Hyundai i30 is the best-selling vehicle in Australia so far in 2016.

* See the Top 50 All-brands and Top 330 All-models by clicking on the title *

Australia is headed towards a second consecutive record year, with June’s all-time high score pushing the market up 3% to 598.140 units halfway through 2016. Yet this year the gains are credited to business fleets with sales up a flamboyant 16% to 234.175 whereas private sales are down 4.5% to 302.011. Rental sales are up 6.5% to 25,278 and government sales are down 0.7% to 20.911. Passenger cars continue to lose ground at -5% to 247.149 sales, with consumers transfering their purchase towards SUVs up 11% to 222.393 and light commercials such as utes – Australian slang for pickup trucks – up 10% to 112.833. The largest states are New South Wales-Sydney (202.695), Victoria-Melbourne (161.288), Queensland-Brisbane (121.962), Western Australia-Perth (51.925), South Australia-Adelaide (36.019), ACT-Canberra (9.575), Tasmania-Hobart (8.787) and Northern Territory-Darwin (5.889). All states are up except Western Austraia (-4%) where the mining boom has died down and Tasmania (-3%). Cars sold in Australia come from Japan (166.946), Thailand (142.010), South Korea (83.387), Germany (44.728), Australia (40.663, down 12%), the U.S. (27.298) and England (18.503).

Toyota Hilux Australia June 2016. Picture courtesy of caradvice.com.auThe Toyota Hilux is up 13% to 2nd place overall so far this year. 

Brand-wise, Toyota is once again at the helm but sees its market share erode slightly from 17.5% a year ago to 17.1% so far in 2016. Mazda (+8%) stays 2nd and crosses the symbolic 10% market share barrier at 10.2% thanks to 60.973 sales while Hyundai (+8%) overtakes Holden (-7%) to snap the third step of the podium with 54.350 units and 9.1% share. Ford impresses with volumes up 15% to 40.383, even outpacing its archenemy Holden in April. Volkswagen (-7%) underperforms but Subaru (+11%) is robust again while Kia breaks into the Top 10 thanks to deliveries up a splendid 28%. Below, Mercedes (+16%), BMW (+25%), Isuzu Ute (+12%), Land Rover (+37%), Volvo (+24%) and Porsche (+27%) all post double-digit gains while among smaller brands Jaguar (+183%) and LDV (+242%) take off. Peugeot (-18%), Renault (-19%), Fiat (-49%) and most strikingly Jeep (-51%) sink.

Ford Ranger Australia June 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Ford Ranger is up 29% to #5. 

The biggest surprise of the year in Australia is the roaring arrival of the Hyundai i30 atop the models ranking with sales up a fantastic 45% year-on-year to 22.857, swooshing past traditional market leaders the Toyota Corolla at 20.544 (-6%) and Mazda3 at 20.088 (-2%). Thesehese two nameplates both have a sedan in their lineup, so to compare apples with apples, 2.517 Elantra sales should also be added, lifting the Hyundai’s total to 25.374. Boosted by a $19.990 with free auto discount, the i30 has transformed what was an anomaly a year ago – being the most popular vehicle in Australia – into a routine: it has led the charts for four consecutive months between March and June.

Hyundai Tucson Austria June 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auThe Hyundai Tucson lands directly at #12 in Australia. 

However, Hyundai Australia doesn’t believe the i30 will keep the pole position until the end of 2016. Interviewed by local media outlet Car Advice, COO Scott Grant admitted that the supply will start to tighten over the last quarter of the year as the Korean factory kick-starts production of the all-new i30 in October, but the model will not reach Australian shores before April 2017. When asked if it was a distinct goal for Hyundai to top the sales charts with the i30, Grant said: “Not really. We haven’t set that target, we don’t discuss it internally. It has created that opportunity, and we’re happy to say it’s the best-selling car.” This is a typically Australian way of saying Of course. Faced with the same questions, Mazda – when the 3 hit #1 – and Toyota – when the Corolla did so answered similarly.

Ford Mustang Australia June 2016The Ford Mustang immediately shot to the top of the sports car segment in Australia. 

The second place in the models charts is another surprise: the Toyota Hilux is helped up 13% by its new generation to 21.171 units, but this performance hides a very intense battle with the Ford Ranger, up 29% to rank within Australia’s Top 5 for the first time at 18.199 deliveries. The Ranger even outsold the Hilux outright in January, and its 4×4 variant outsold the Hilux 4×4 in April and June. The Mazda CX-5 holds onto its toitle of best-selling SUV in Australia with sales up 1% to 12.593 units and one spot better in 7th place. It distances the Toyota RAV4 up 6% to 9.728 and the Hyundai Tucson, an instant blockbuster here at #12 overall and 9.609 deliveries – the exact same ranking its predecessor the ix35 was holding exactly a year ago.

Mitsubishi Pajero Sport Australia June 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auMitsubishi Pajero Sport

The Mazda CX-3 is up 120% to #15, the Hyundai Accent up 102% to lead its segment (like the i30!), the Subaru Forester up 26$% and the Honda HR-V up 30%. Other successful new launches include the Suzuki Vitara (#54), Mercedes GLC (#57), Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (#61), Ford Mustang (#63) – now the most popular sports car in Australia – Toyota Fortuner (#73), Ford Everest (#81), Mercedes GLE (#96) and Jaguar XE (#126).

Previous month: Australia June 2016: Hyundai i30 tops biggest month ever

One year ago: Australia 1st Half 2015: Mazda graduates to #2 in record market

Full H1 2016 Top 50 All-brands and Top 330 All-models vs. Full H1 2015 figures below.

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Australia June 2016: Hyundai i30 tops biggest month ever

Hyundai i30 Australia June 2016. Picture courtesy of caradvice.com.auThe Hyundai i30 posts the strongest sales month of any nameplate in Australia in 11 years. 

* Now updated with the Top 50 All-brands and Top 286 All-models by clicking on the title *

The political campaign leading to the federal election at the end of the month was feared to have disrupted new car sales in Australia in June, but the contrary ended up being true. The Australian market is up 2% year-on-year to break a new all-time monthly record at 128.569 units. Passenger cars hold 41.9% of the market, SUVs 35.8% and light commercials 19.6%. As is traditionally the case in June – the end of the financial year in Australia – business fleets are particularly strong: they gain 11% to 46.162 when private sales actually decline by 2% to 70.015 as do rental sales down 2% to 5.170 and government sales down 3% to 3.653.

Looking at market evolution by state, the biggest gains are recorded in the ACT (+13% to 2.133), Victoria (+5% to 34.262), South Australia (+5% to 7.613), Northern Territory (+4% to 1.240) and New South Wales (+3% to 43.449). Queensland sales are stable at 27.270 but Tasmania (1.853) and Western Australia (10.749) are both down 7%. The most frequent country provenance of cars sold in Australia in June is Japan (-1% to 34.017), Thailand (+7% to 31.848), South Korea (+23% to 20.765), Australia (+2% to 9.857), Germany (-6% to 8.695) and the U.S. (-24% to 5.257).

Kia Picanto Australia June 2016. Picture caradvice.com.auThanks to the new Picanto and Cerato, Kia gains 41% and ranks 10th brand.

One year ago the Hyundai i30 surprised the entire industry by finishing on top, at the time posting the biggest monthly total in 8 years at 5.521 sales. Since, the i30 has transformed this fluke into a routine and in June it is the best-selling vehicle in Australia for the 4th consecutive month and the 6th time in the past 13 months. Its score, at 6.432 sales, up 16.5% on a year ago, is the biggest monthly volume for any nameplate in Australia since June 2005 when the Holden Commodore found 6.837 new homes. In fact, this result makes the Hyundai i30 only the third nameplate in the past 15 years to have scored at least one 6.000+ sales month, along with the legendary Ford Falcon (record at 6.923 in June 2003) and, again, the Holden Commodore (9.667 in October 2002). This score propels the i30 into the year-to-date pole position for the first time, a feat we detail in a separate H1 2016 update.

Toyota remains the most popular manufacturer in the country by far, following the market at +3% to 22.083 units and 17.2% share. The Japanese carmaker distances Mazda up 8% to 12.455 and 9.7% share and Hyundai up a splendid 12% to 12.300 and 9.6%. Holden (-5%) and Mitsubishi (-3%) follow but skid while Ford (+15%) continues to surge thanks to the Ranger, outselling the Hilux in its 4×4 variant this month. Kia (+41%), Subaru (+14%), BMW (+16%), Land Rover (+30%), Chinese LDV (+174%) and Jaguar (+209%) all post solid gains, whereas Isuzu Ute (-12%), Volkswagen (-16%), Peugeot (-30%), Volvo (-35%), Jeep (-55%) and Renault (-58%) crumble.

Previous month: Australia May 2016: Hyundai i30 leads, 133 units off YTD top spot

One year ago: Australia June 2015: Hyundai i30 surprise leader in record market

Full June 2016 Top 50 All-brands and Top 286 All-models below.

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Australia May 2016: Hyundai i30 leads, only 133 units off YTD top spot

Hyundai i30 Australia May 2016The Hyundai i30 is the best-selling vehicle in Australia for the third consecutive month. 

* Now updated with the Top 294 All-models and Top 50 All-brands by clicking on the title *

Australian new vehicle sales continue on their record-breaking pace, up 4% both in May (96.672) and year-to-date (469.571), on track to post a second consecutive year of all-time record sales. Private buyers did not contribute in any way to this record running this month with private sales down 4% to 47.424 just as business fleets gain 13.5% to 38.611, rental sales are up 17% to 3.983 and government sales up 2% to 3.807. South Australia (+10%), New South Wales (+6%) and Victoria (+3.5%) are the fastest growing States this month, with Western Australia the only one in negative at -5% just as the mining boom continues to cool down.

Toyota Hilux Australia May 2016The Toyota Hilux remains the #1 model year-to-date, but for just 133 units.

Passenger cars continue to lose ground at -6% to hold just 39.5% market share vs. 43.5% a year ago. Reversely, the SUV segment is on the rise again at +11% to 37.5% share vs. 34.9% a year ago. Light commercials are up 11% to account for 20% of sales. Business and rental fleet buyers are strong supporters of SUVs, up 25% per cent and 54% respectively on the same period last year. According to caradvice.com.au, the main sources of vehicles are: Japan (27.367 +2%), Thailand (23.064 +15%), South Korea (13.585 +29%), Germany (7.337 -3%), Australia (6.647 -7%) and U.S.A. (4.220 -14%).

Nissan Navara Australia May 2016The Nissan Navara is back among Australia’s Top 10 best-sellers. 

Sales leader Toyota outpaces the market in May at +12% to 17.201 and 17.8% share vs. 17.1% so far this year, ahead of Mazda up 10% to 9.9% share and Hyundai up 9% to 9.3%. Toyota reaffirms its market dominance this month: it is the #1 car brand, #1 SUV brand and #1 light commercial brand (Hyundai was the top-selling passenger car brand in April). Despite volumes down 7%, Holden is back above archenemy Ford (+10%) after being overtaken for the first time in 17 years last month. Kia (+26%), Nissan (+25%), Mercedes (+22%) and Land Rover (+19%) deliver the largest year-on-year gains among the Top 20 brands whereas Honda (-14%), Volkswagen (-18%), Renault (-30%) and Jeep (-54%) fall apart.

Kia sales are up 26% in May.

Among smaller brands, Infiniti (+30%), Volvo (+39%) and Jaguar (+189%) take off as does Chinese light commercial manufacturer LDV (aka Maxus) up 4-fold on its May 2015 score to 139 sales, the brand’s strongest monthly volume in the two years it has been in Australia. Other Chinese fares Foton (-34%), Great Wall (4 sales) and Chery (one unit sold) remain extremely discreet, while Haval hasn’t been able to communicate any sales figures just yet despite being in market since last October. Another newcomer is U.S. pickup truck maker Ram, selling 21 units in May and crossing the 100 unit-mark year-to-date at 104, with the very first unit of SLT Big Horn being registered this month.

LDV G10 Australia May 2016LDV G10 – China’s LDV sales in Australia are up 321% in May. 

Over in the models ranking, it’s another surprise at the top: the Hyundai i30 posts a third consecutive month in pole position thanks to sales shooting up 126% year-on-year to 3.771, the first vehicle to do so since the Toyota Corolla in Feb-Mar-Apr 2015. Less than a year ago in June 2015, the i30 managed its very first #1 ranking here and by then it was only the second month in history that a Hyundai nameplate topped Australian sales charts outright, along with the Excel in June 1998. Thanks to this stunning performance, the i30 now adds up to 16.425 sales year-to-date (+60%), leapfrogging both its direct competitors the Toyota Corolla (16.117) and Mazda3 (15.976) and falling just 133 units short of the YTD pole position still held by the Toyota Hilux (16.558).

Suzuki Vitara Australia May 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auFirst Australian Top 50 ranking for the new Suzuki Vitara. 

The Ford Ranger holds strong in 5th place (+26%), the Holden Commodore manages a rare month in positive (+2%), and the Mazda CX-5 is once again the best-selling SUV in Australia and continues to progress (+7%) despite the tremendous success of its little brother the CX-3, up 40% year-on-year to #14 overall. The Nissan Navara reappears inside the Top 10 for the first time since last January thanks to sales up 113% to 1.752. The Hyundai Tucson (1.643) is breathing on the Toyota RAV4’s neck (1.695), the Hyundai Accent (+101%) more than compensates for the discontinuation of the i20, with the Subaru Forester (+28%), Honda HR-V (+26%), Mitsubishi Outlander (+64%) and Nissan Qashqai (+70%) all posting spectacular gains.

Mitsubishi Pajero Sport Australia May 2016. Picture courtesy caradvice.com.auAustralians have embraced the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport’s controversial design.

Among recently launched nameplates, below the Hyundai Tucson reigning supreme at #12, the Suzuki Vitara gains 14 spots on April to break into the Australian Top 50 for the very first time at #39, the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport is up 17 to #60, the Mercedes GLC down 8 to #62 and the Toyota Fortuner down 4 to #66. After an extravagant score in April (#35), the Ford Mustang falls back to more realistic levels (#75) yet still dominates its segment. For its first full month of sales, the Kia Picanto takes the lead of its (flailing) segment at #107, while the Mercedes GLS s up 41 ranks to an excellent 132nd spot. Finally, we welcome the Bentley Bentayga in the Australian sales charts this month at #252.

Previous month: Australia April 2016: Hyundai i30 #1 again, Ford above Holden for first time in 17 years

One year ago: Australia May 2015: Discounted Toyota Hilux takes the lead

Full May 2016 Top 294 All-models and Top 50 All-brands below.

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