* See the Top 30 best-selling models by clicking on the title! Many thanks to Stephen *
The corner is not turned yet for Japanese new car sales, back down 7% year-on-year in May to 219,099 registrations, in spite of imports up 25% after gaining 35% in April. The year-to-date total now stands at 1,374,119 units, down 11% on 2012. The fact that import sales are growing goes against instinct as a weaker yen makes them more expensive, however the explanation could be that buyers of imported cars anticipate the yen will get even weaker and are buying their dream car now before their price gets out of hand. The Toyota Prius has well and truly resumed its reign atop the Japanese models ranking, selling 18,513 units this month (-11%) vs. just 14,175 for the Toyota Aqua (-29%). The Prius is now only 1,389 sales behind the Aqua year-to-date and if it continues at this rate it should pass it next month to reclaim the pole position it has held over the last 4 years.
After 8 consecutive months spent in third position, the Nissan Note finally cracks and is down one spot to #4 but still up 116% to 9,351 sales, passed by the Honda Fit up one rank to #3 in spite of sales down 35% year-on-year to 9,419 units. The Toyota Crown brilliantly maintains itself in 5th place thanks to 6,925 sales, up 236% on May 2012 and the nameplate’s highest ranking in the country in over 5 years, since April 2008 when it also reached #5. The Toyota Corolla is down one rank to #8 but up 42% year-on-year, the Subaru Impreza is inside the Top 10 for the 6th time in the last 9 months at #10, the Subaru Forester is up 459% yoy to rank #13 again, the nameplate’s 2nd best-ever monthly ranking in the country below the #11 it reached last December and the Mazda Atenza (aka Mazda6) is up 1677% yoy to #25.
Previous month: Japan April 2013: Toyota Prius back on top
Full May 2013 Top 30 Ranking Table below.