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Australia April 2017: Toyota Hilux and Ford Ranger cement leadership

The Toyota Hilux is the best-selling nameplate in Australia this month.

* Now updated with the Top 45 All-brands and Top 278 All-models *

According to VFACTS figures released by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, the Australian new car market continues its decline in April with registrations down 5.1% to 83.135, bringing the year-to-date tally down 2.8% to 362.480. The fall would have been much significant were it not for business sales up 1.7% and overtaking private sales down 13% while government sales are down 15% and rental sales up 26%, the latter two with small volumes. After two months of SUV domination, passenger cars are back above SUVs even though they fall 12% while SUVs are up 1%. Light commercial vehicles are up 3%. Of note within segments are medium SUVs up 10% and 4×4 utes (Australian slang for pickup trucks) up 11.1%.

Looking at the origin of vehicles sold in Australia, the most popular locations are Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Germany and Australia. Looking at sales by state, all states and territories are in negative with the two largest selling states, New South Wales (Sydney) and Victoria (Melbourne) losing the least ground at -2.8% and the Australian Capital Territory (Canberra) and Western Australia (Perth) losing the most. Tony Weber, the Chief Executive of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, said that market activity during April was affected by the impact of the Easter long weekend break, Anzac Day and national school holidays. “There were two less selling days overall in April this year compared with last, but added to this was the dampening effect that the holiday period had on dealership traffic as many families headed off to enjoy a final break before winter,” Mr Weber said.

In the brands ranking, both Toyota (-3%) and Mazda (+2%) do better than the market but Hyundai (-21%), Holden (-13%) and Ford (-15%) fare worse. Note Holden is only two meagre units above Ford this month while a year ago in April 2016 Ford was ahead. Subaru (+22%), Mitsubishi (+31%) and Kia (+36%) go against the grain inside the Top 10 with fantastic increases but Nissan (-17%) and Volkswagen (-18%) struggle. Outside the Top 10, Honda (+34%), LDV (+50%), Alfa Romeo (+36%) and Maserati (+34%) make themselves noticed.

Over in the models ranking, for only the fourth time ever after last OctoberNovember and March, two utes dominate the ranking: the Toyota Hilux (+1%) and Ford Ranger (+5%). The big news this month is the fact that these two nameplates are now also in the lead year-to-date thanks to a 9% and 17% increase respectively. The Toyota Corolla (-14%) and Mazda3 (-8%) are relegated in third and fourth places like last year. Potentially helped by the new generation of the model, the Mazda CX-5 is up 29% to 5th place and remains the best-selling SUV in the country. The Hyundai i30 tumbles down 52% just as stocks of the previous generation model dry up in the wake of the arrival of the new one. At #12, the Holden Commodore slips outside the Top 10 for the first time since January 2016 and is outsold this month by the Colorado. Notice also the Mitsubishi ASX up 58%, the Outlander up 125% and the Subaru Impreza up 177% while the Toyota C-HR breaks into the Top 50 at #47.

Previous month: Australia March 2017: Hilux leads, SUVs beat passenger cars again

One year ago: Australia April 2016: Hyundai i30 #1 again, Ford above Holden for first time in 17 years

Full April 2017 Top 45 All-brands and Top 278 All-models below.

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