Turkey Full Year 2015: Toyota Corolla snaps last minute trophy

Toyota Corolla 2015. Picture courtesy of otomobil.com.trToyota Corolla. Picture otomobil.com.tr

* See the Top 45 All-brands and Top 320 All-models by clicking on the title *

Euphoric year for Turkish new light vehicle sales despite the devaluation of the lira that induced some inflationary pressures towards the end of he year. The market is up a by a stunning 26% year-on-year to a record 968.017 registrations including LCVs. Volkswagen outpaces the market at +28% to remain the favourite brand in the country with 139.043 sales and 14.4% share, with Ford (+37%) sidestepping both Renault (+19%) and Fiat (+23%) for 2nd place. Hyundai (+11%) drops market share while Toyota (+41%) overtakes Opel (+20%) and Dacia lodges a sweet 30% improvement at #8. Notice also Kia up 38%, Peugeot up 43%, Porsche up 46%, Skoda up 52%, Jeep up 79%, Mini up 62% and Jaguar up 546%.

Fiat Egea Turkey 2015The Fiat Egea is replacing the Linea and broke into the Turkish Top 10 in December.

Over in the models ranking, we have a repeat of last year when the Renault Fluence snapped the pole position in extremis from the Fiat Linea. December is traditionally the biggest month of the year in Turkey – almost twice the sales as any other month of the year and this year was no exception with 156.173 registrations. The Toyota Corolla jumps from #4 in 2014 and as at end-November directly into pole position thanks to a mammoth December score (7.387 sales), finishing the year up 50% to 35.237 units. That’s 197 more than the Fiat Linea once again losing its crown in the last hours of the year… The Linea is being replaced with the Fiat Egea, already #9 in December and by far the best-selling all-new model for 2015 at #45 with 5,674 in just two months.

Ford Courier Turkey 2015. Picture courtesy honestjohn.co.ukThe Ford Courier is the best-selling LCV in Turkey in 2015.

The Ford Courier is up a spectacular 71% and 8 spots on 2014 to land in third position with 34.655 sales, the Renault Fluence is up 5% but down 3 spots to #4 and the Fiat Doblo is up 37% to #5. Further down, notice the VW Passat up 60% to a splendid 7th place thanks to the new generation, the Ford Transit up 36% to #8 and the Ford Focus up 34% to #9. Other great performers in the Top 50 include the Nissan Qashqai up 58% to #17, the VW Transporter up 66% to #21, Mercedes C-Class up 82% to #28 and Renault Kangoo up 160% o #37. Along with the Fiat Egea, the Renault Kadjar (#64), Hyundai Tucson (#74), Fiat 500X (#111) and Mazda CX-3 (#136) also make their first appearance in the annual Turkish sales charts.

Previous month: Turkey November 2015: Fiat Fiorino and Opel Astra on top, Egea in Top 20

Previous year: Turkey Full Year 2014: Renault Fluence edges Fiat Linea out

Two years ago: Turkey Full Year 2013: Fiat Linea #1 again, Renault Symbol up 70% to #2

Full Year 2015 Top 45 All-brands and Top 320 All-models below.

Full December 2015 Top 40 All-brands and Top 244 All-models below.

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Media Post: The Unexpected Firsts in the Motor Trend Awards

Chevrolet Silverado 2016Chevrolet Silverado 

It’s that time of year again, when we get to hear all sorts of fantastic information about new cars from our friends at Motor Trend. This year, Chevy swept the 2016 Motor Trend awards, taking home two Golden Calipers for Car and Truck of the Year.

2016 Truck of the Year Winner is…  

Last year, Chevy took the title of truck of the year, making a go at imagining, engineering, and crafting the best truck out there. And it worked! But how did it get back into the race a year later? How could Chevy perform this same miracle feat for a second year in a row, and — perhaps more importantly — how could they, for two years in a row, win?

One factor was the engine. The Chevy Colorado simply has a very powerful engine. In a truck, that’s especially important, and it clearly served the Chevy Colorado well.

Another factor was how it drove — despite being about the same size (and heavier) than its competitor the Tacoma, the Colorado is designed to feel like it’s lighter and more agile when driven. Ultimately, the Tacoma felt like the future of trucks, while the Colorado was just, well, a truck.

Historically, a Motor Trend award precedes a lift in sales for the winning truck. If sales of the Chevy Colorado continue trending upward, drivers will look for unique ways to make their trucks stand out from the crowd. Aftermarket upgrades like body kits, custom paint jobs and hydraulic lift kits are on the top of the 2016 shopping list. For drivers looking to replace a cracked or damaged rim, factory replica wheels offer a similar look for about 70 percent off of dealer pricing. To avoid being stuck with low-quality knock-off parts, ask if the auto part or accessory you’re buying meets the same rigorous testing and certification standards as OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts.

Chevrolet CamaroChevrolet Camaro

And 2016 Car of the Year Honor goes to…  

The Chevrolet Camaro! This was a very unexpected result. Camaros have a lot of stigma to overcome, but in this case the sheer wonder of the machine won the day. The good folks at Motor Trend would have said, if asked beforehand, that the Camaro stood not a chance on earth of winning the award. In fact, they were surprised that it had even made it as a finalist. And yet, here we all are. A surprising and satisfying result.

Angus Mackenzie, on of these judges, had the privilege of driving all of the finalist cars, and just happened to drive the BMW entry (which was clearly the better of the two) immediately after he had driven the Camaro. He was so surprised by the difference that he had to drive them again to make sure he wasn’t imagining things, and it turned out that he wasn’t! Apparently, the handling and power on the Chevy was just better than that of the BMW.

Good job, underdog!

Surprise, Surprise

There’s nothing to make an awards ceremony exciting like having an upset. There’s nothing quite like the shock — and then thrill — of seeing the underdog unexpectedly come through, or of seeing something that you hadn’t even imagined happening. So keep your eye on the Motor Trend awards this coming year. Who knows what might happen?

Media post: The Ultimate Audi Quiz

Audi Q7. Picture courtesy auto.cz

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you mention Audi… class, style, luxury?

Established in 1909, Audi is one of the best-selling car manufacturers in the world. Now owned by Volkswagen, the German car manufacturer designs, engineers and distributes luxury vehicles from its nine production facilities worldwide. The brand have recently extended their range by expanding into supercars, with the release of the Audi R8 in 2006.

Founded over 100 years ago Audi have a long history… but how much do you know think you know about the company? Did you know that over the years Audi has competed in various forms of motorsports, or that in September 1921, Audi became the first German car manufacturer to offer a production car with left-hand drive.

If you consider yourself an Audi fan and think you know all there is to know about the brand, New Audi dealers JCT600 have created The Ultimate Audi Quiz that’s perfect for you! It puts even the most passionate of car enthusiast to the test… so, unless you know your stuff you may struggle to answer all of the 14 tricky questions correctly.

Don’t believe us? Give it a go… car enthusiast or not, getting 14 out of 14 is near impossible!

Media post: How Car Dealerships Are Changing Sales Tactics in the 21st Century

 

Car dealership. Picture courtesy theonecar.com

There are many more car dealerships out there than there are models of cars to be sold. That means that many car dealerships will be selling the same exact products. Most of them will have paid about the same amount of money for their inventory. All other things being equal, it might be hard for an outside observer to understand how dealerships like these find ways to sell cars in volume, at least in a way that’s reliable.

This is because most consumers aren’t committed to a single dealership. They might have a favorite make or model, or be dedicated Dodge buyers or something like that. But in most cases, consumers don’t care where they buy their new vehicle, so long as the price is good, the product is quality, and the dealership is not too far away. If your dealership isn’t able to provide on those levels, you are probably out of the running for a buyer’s business.

That is, until now. The internet changes everything. Consumers research and buy in completely different ways than they did years ago, and there are new methods by which you can make your products available when they are ready to make a purchase. Marketing companies like ShowRoomLogic are finding ways to win the war on the web, and it’s giving dealerships a sales edge, even when nothing changes about the way they do sales at their brick and mortar location.

Car shoppers are a flighty bunch. It can be hard to tell, if you’re looking at the pages a prospective buyer visits, what they plan to buy and when. But consumer behaviors have been well studied. Today’s marketers know how to derive from a whole bunch of clicking, what a consumer is most interested in and when they plan to buy. The key to getting their business, is providing the product they are looking for at the right price. Until now, this has been almost impossible for car sellers, because there was no way to bring in traffic to their sites reliably. But Showroomlogic.com changes that with their approach to advertising.

Through paid search and retargeting, your inventory will be accessible and visible to interested buyers, no matter where else they happen to be on the web. This is a powerful tool. If a consumer sees that you have when they want, that you are offering a competitive price, and that you are only 24 miles away, they will be very likely to call you up and schedule a time to come by. Consumers don’t like guessing games. It’s a pain to call around looking for lots that have what they’re looking for on hand. By showing your prospective customers exactly what you have to offer at any given time, you’ll be removing one of the barriers that separates you from the sale.

ShowRoomLogic has a lot of other methods to help you present the best deal available to the most interested customers in your region. Their program is endlessly customizable and providing real results to dealerships around the nation. You may not have thought that car sales could be changed so fundamentally, but this is how a new generation of sellers is finding their edge.

Media post: Subaru Sets Annual Sales Record with a Month to Go

Subaru

It’s a good time to be full of innovation.

The vehicles they sell are slightly quirky. Their designs are a little off the wall. Their technologies are on the forefront and innovative. Apparently it’s a winning combination.

Record-setting Numbers

Subaru of America has once again seen an increase in month of year-over-year sales, meaning this November’s sales beat the sales numbers from November 2013. Last year’s November sales were 45,273 units while November 2014’s total is 46,070. It’s an increase of 2 percent which may not seem like much, but consider that now the Japanese carmaker has set that same record 48 times consecutively. That sounds like a recipe that others might just want to duplicate.

Eighth Year of Sales Growth

Year-to-date sales are also hugely on the rise with 526,401 vehicles hitting the streets to this point of 2014. That number is up 14 percent from last year. Not only does that number represent massive increases but it also tips Subaru’s sales over last year’s record-setting numbers. In eleven months of 2015 Subaru has rolled more vehicles than in the full twelve months of 2014. It marks the company’s eighth year of sales growth and its seventh consecutive sales record.

Tipping the scales in Subaru’s favor is the Impreza – perhaps Subaru’s most recognizable model — whose sales put up a whopping 90 percent increase over last November’s numbers. Impreza models of all kinds are featured on car blogs such as GearHeads, with an ever-increasing following – so it appears by the numbers. Contributing to a strong increase were the Crosstrek with 17 percent more units sold than the previous November.

Media post: Expenses Every Car Owner Has to Consider

Picture courtesy of newcarsplus.com.au

You’ve taken the time to thoroughly research cars, you spent afternoons test driving and comparing and then finally, you found the perfect one! But buying your car is only the first step. Now that you have it, there are some more things to consider in order to properly budget your car owner duties and extend the life of your vehicle.

Maintenance for Long Life

  • In order to increase the life of your car, it’s extremely important to maintain it with regular engine, transmission, break, and tire check-ups. Among other things, your car will need its oil changed a few times a year and tires rotated and then replaced every few thousand miles. Paying for each check-up can be costly so, for many, it may be beneficial to buy a maintenance package in advance. Check with your dealer to see what kind of maintenance packages they offer and also research a few from independent companies.
  • One often overlooked way to take care of your car is to protect the body and the cabin. With the simple design of a car cover, you can protect your car during harsh weather and increase the lifetime of paint if garage-keeping is not an option. Additionally, by having the windows blocked, you are also able to keep the sun from shining in and ruining upholstery or cracking the dashboard. Loving car owners will also consider buying seat covers to protect the cloth or leather from normal wear and tear. Not only will these simple investments keep your car looking new, if you plan to sell it later on, it will sell easier and possibly bring you a higher sale amount.
  • Be prepared for the unexpected. If you haven’t thought about those times when your car needs a jump-start or a tire change, then you’re likely to be unprepared when the time comes. Buying or assembling a roadside emergency car kit to keep in the trunk will save you from a big headache later on. You may never need it, but you’ll be happy you have it if the time comes. Packing a survival emergency kit is also a smart idea.

Technology for Fun, Safe Times

  • There are some new fun inventions you can add to your car. One of the most popular additions is a wireless router. These routers leverage 3 or 4G networks and allow you to use your phone, tablet, laptop or any Wi-Fi device while in the car. However, car manufacturers are now are selling cars with built-in routers. Imagine how much easier those cross country trips to grandma’s house will be if passengers can peruse the internet or get much needed work done! For these services, you have the option to go through the cell phone carrier you already use or you can go through a 3rd-party provider such as OnStar.
  • Technology is fun but it is also distracting. Distractions while driving are seriously dangerous. While we love the idea of having a 3 or 4G network traveling with you in the car for passengers, it is also important to limit any distractions for the driver. One way of doing that is with free or paid apps that block the cell phone signal of the driver. These apps will send an auto-text and voice a pre-disposed message to callers informing them that the person they are trying to reach is driving.

Because You Have To

  • Every vehicle owner in every state must register and renew their vehicle registration. No one like to pay these fees and remembering to do so can be annoying but it doesn’t have to be difficult. The fastest way to get your tags renewed is in person at a local DMV office but if you can’t make that trip and can’t wait for the snail mail option, renewing online is the easiest way to get this done. Most states offer an online renewal option and in California and Florida, you have multiple online renewal Companies like eTags.com can process your renewal faster and with some much needed conveniences.
  • Nobody likes to have to pay for car insurance but since it is the law in every state, look at the bright side. If you get in a car crash, you won’t be on the hook for the property damages and medical bills of any other parties involved. Depending on what level of coverage you choose or are required to have, you may be covered for any damages to your car and have your own medical bills paid. One thing that is very important to remember is that you always have to shop around. Many people think that if they remain with one insurance provider for a long period of time they will get lower rates but the true is actually opposite. Unfortunately, “loyalty” discounts do anything but lower your rate.

Media post: Avoid a car breakdown this winter

8641983-Winter-car-breakdown-woman-try-to-repair-motor-Stock-Photo-snow. Picture courtesy 123rf.comjpg

With winter here, conditions on the roads will worsen, making journeys more difficult and putting increased wear and tear on your car. Particularly for you daily commuters, driving in a winter wonderland doesn’t have to be driving in a winter ‘worryland’ as there’s much you can do to avoid a winter car breakdown, whatever your car’s age. So, it’s time to get proactive, before the weather beats you to it, and stay one step ahead by following advice from the experts.

There’s some sound recommendations on GEM Motoring Assistand the article outlines 5 simple steps to avoid the winter driving blues. It’s easy to follow and will be as good for your car’s health as your 5-a-day fruit and vegetables are good for you.

Generally, it’s important to take care of the following:

Batteries
Top of the list to prevent a winter breakdown has to be getting your battery checked. All batteries go through extra strain in cold, wet weather and probably won’t survive from the daily bashing they’ll receive if they’re not in peak condition. Battery failure is one of the biggest causes of winter breakdowns and you’re likely not to get off the drive in the morning if your battery is below par! Worse still, you might get stranded somewhere away from home when it’s cold and dark and your battery is as flat as a pancake. Yes, you can always call out the breakdown truck but remember that, in winter, they’re probably very busy attending to other unfortunate motorists just like you!

Fuel
Up there with battery problems is running out of fuel. There’s a good video and follow-up article on Money Supermarketthat talks about the increased likelihood of running out of fuel in the winter, usually miles from a fuel stop. It’s potentially harder to estimate journey times and fuel consumption in the winter with traffic jams and detours caused by accidents and bad weather. So, always keep topped up with fuel way before you really need to.

Servicing and antifreeze
It’s a good idea to get your car serviced regularly and certainly before the winter sets in. When you get this done, make sure that the garage has topped up your antifreeze levels. It may sound like child’s play but inadequate antifreeze can wreak havoc on your engine and cause untold damage.

Tyres
It’s really important to have good strong gripping tyres in the winter too. There’ll be ice, sludge, mud and grime all over the roads and your tyres need to be able to cope with everything thrown at them, which they won’t if the tread’s not sufficiently deep. You can even get special winter tyres fitted to your vehicle to stay on the road (literally) when the weather turns nasty and your local garage will be able to advise on this.

Lights
A potential problem for motorists is main headlights (and other peripheral lights such as brake lights, indicators and fog lights) not working properly either because of faulty bulbs or through an electrical fault. So, get all your lights checked and make sure everything’s working properly – you know it makes sense!

Visibility
To maximise visibility in poor weather conditions, having a clear windscreen is critical, both inside if the windows are misted up or icy and, of course, outside. Don’t set off until your inside windows are fully clear. When you do move away, you’ll need your wipers to be at their most efficient when driving in heavy rain or when mud and dirty water get thrown up onto your windscreen by vehicles in front of you. Keep your washer bottle filled as nothing’s worse than having a smeary windscreen causing you to struggle to see the road ahead and your washer bottle is empty.

Wipers
Your wipers need to be at their best so get the blades checked, or even renewed, to reduce the risk of them splitting and becoming inefficient. Also, have the brackets and fixings checked to minimise the risk of mechanical failure.

Being prepared
As the saying goes, forewarned is forearmed and, for those who were in the Guides or Scouts, the motto ‘Be prepared’ has a lot of truth in it when it comes to winter driving. Finally, it could be that, despite all your best efforts, it’s not always possible to avoid a winter breakdown, so ensure that you carry essentials such as drinks, snacks, blankets and extra clothing as well as your mobile phone and car charger. Don’t forget to keep your fuel levels high because, if you get stuck, you’ll be able to warm the car for longer by keeping the engine running while waiting for the mechanic/tow truck.

Media post: Toyota Australia Reports Surprising Profit in Midst of 2017 Factory Shutdown

Toyota Camry

Image: Last “man” standing, what’s now for Toyota Australia?. Image credit: theconversation.com

Shortly after announcing the shutdown of its factory in Australia in 2017, Toyota Australia reported an after-tax profit of $194 million for the year. At first glance, the hefty profit makes a complete shutdown of production in The Land of Plenty seem like a questionable move on Toyota’s part, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. The reality is that most of the costs of the shutdown in 2017 were attributed to last year, a year in which Toyota reported a staggering after-tax loss of $437 million.

In addition to the tremendous loss last year, Toyota’s Australian manufacturing operation has ended up in the red in four of the previous six years. Despite significant government funding to keep the Toyota factory afloat, with the average taxpayer forking over $922 per car built, Toyota has lost nearly $2 billion in the last 10 years. And although factory executives have worked hard over the years to cut the manufacturing cost of each car by nearly $4,000, it’s still more cost-effective to import cars than produce them locally.

 

Government policy has also played a major role in the reduction of domestic car production. Where the Australian market used to be one of the most protected in the world, it is now one of the least protected. Import duties were reduced dramatically beginning in the 1980s and are currently at just 3.5%. Not only that, but a strong Australian dollar in recent years has made importing cars even cheaper. Another major driving force of Toyota’s inevitable demise is the high level of competition in the Australian car market, a market in which 60 brands compete for a little over 1 million sales.

Manufacturers throughout the Local industry are feeling the effects of this downward trend caused by high labour costs combined with the high level of market saturation, as Ford and Holden announced last year that they will close their factories as well. So after being a fixture in the Australian economy for over 100 years, vehicle manufacturing is on its way out the door.

The factory closure will put Toyota’s 2500 employees out of work, but the advanced warning gives them 2 years to retrain and learn new skills in another chosen field—something that Toyota is actively taking the initiative to help them do. The average employee at the Toyota facility, which is located in Altoona Victoria, has worked there for 15 years. And amazingly, the longest tenured employee has been working at the factory for 42 years.

Despite the crushing news they recently received, Toyota says that their workforce is determined to see it through and keep working until the closure. Australia was the first to manufacture Toyota vehicles outside of Japan in 1968, so the factory closure will mark the end of 49 years of local production. Although Australia is experiencing a rising standard of living, there is some concern that the country’s quickly vanishing car manufacturing industry combined with the rising cost of living will recessionary pressures and put more financial strain on the average family.

However, the optimistic view is that eliminating an uncompetitive local industry will benefit the economy and improve affordability in the long run. And since every cars will eventually be coming from overseas, more people may turn to alternative sourcing methods such as grey importing for possible better deals and more variant options, especially when it comes to rare cars that exceed the luxury tax threshold.

About the Author: Tim Marsh is an inborn entrepreneur with a strong passion to assist individuals and companies to secure the best outcome for their motor vehicle purchases. With over 9 years in the motor industry, he has helped thousands of clients to find their ideal cars and car insurance, saving them thousands of dollars in the process. Tim is also an avid blogger for his two websites http://www.warrantyandinsurance.com.au and http://newcarsplus.com.au and other automotive websites. Connect with him on LinkedIn and Twitter to check out his latest articles.