* See the Top 30 best-selling models and Top 13 local brands by clicking on the title! *
In March new car sales in Japan are up a fantastic 14% year-on-year to 481,039 registrations, mainly due to purchases brought forward in anticipation of the national sales tax raise from 5 to 8% on April 1. The 1st Quarter total is up 18% to 1,109,661 units. Toyota (43.5% share), Nissan (14.1%), Honda (12.7% and up 42%), Mazda (5.2%) and Subaru (4.1%) dominate the brands ranking while Mitsubishi Fuso (+73%), UD Trucks (+71%) and Lexus (+30%) deliver outstanding gains. Reversely Mitsubishi is down 22% this month.
In the models ranking, the Honda Fit reclaims the pole position for the 4th time in the last 5 months and with 31,921 sales it delivers the Fit nameplate’s 2nd biggest monthly volume ever below the 34,161 units it sold in March 2012. The Toyota Aqua is kicked down to 2nd place at 31,146 sales but keeps the year-to-date lead for now at 78,004 units vs. 77,093 for the Fit. Below the Toyota Prius (-13%) and Nissan Note (-19%) in sharp decline, the Toyota Corolla is up 50% year-on-year thanks to its new hybrid variants in 5th place. In fact, this month no less than 7 nameplates break their all-time monthly volume record, all due to the arrival of hybrid versions in the range when the new generation of the model launched.
First the Toyota Voxy at #6 with 11,937 sales, up 130% year-on-year, then its twin the Toyota Noah at #11 with 9,841 units (+144%), the Subaru Impreza at #10 with 9,632 sales (+31%), the Nissan X-Trail at #11 with 9,093 units sold (+166%), the Honda Vezel at #12 with 8,649 sales for its 4th month in market, the Mazda Axela down two spots on February but up 375% year-on-year to an all-time high 7,784 units and the Toyota Harrier at #15 with 7,020 sales. Pfew! Talk about a record-filled month in Japan!
Previous month: Japan February 2014: Toyota Aqua #1, Voxy and Noah shoot up
Full March 2014 Top 30 models and Top 13 local brands Ranking Tables below.