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Japan April 2023: New generation lifts Toyota Prius to highest in 3.5 years

Toyota Prius sales are up 137.2% year-on-year.

Note the March 2023 post has been updated with Q1 2023 Top 20 foreign models.

The Japanese new vehicle market is up another beautiful 16.7% year-on-year in April to 349,592 sales, leading to a year-to-date tally up 15.7% to 1,731,150 units. Toyota (+17.7%) slightly outpaces its home market to hold 33.7% share, exactly the same as year-to-date. Below, Daihatsu (+15%) climbs to 2nd place above Suzuki (+14.9%) and Honda (-2.3%), in difficulty. Nissan (+18%) stays in the 5th spot above a soaring Mazda (+88.3%) and a shy Subaru (+4.5%). Lexus (+145.4%) is once again the hero of the month at #8 with Isuzu (+57.7%) and Mitsubishi (+32%) also very dynamic. Further down, great performances are much rarer, with BMW (+66.1%) and Land Rover (+179.3%) standing out.

Over in the regular models charts, the Toyota Yaris/Cross (+40.8%) holds onto the lead above the Toyota Corolla/Cross (+7.6%) with the Toyota Sienta (+120.8%) coming in third place. Lifted by a new generation, the Toyota Prius (+137.2%) climbs to #4, the nameplate’s highest ranking since December 2019. The Roomy (-29.7%), leader a year ago, ensures the Top 5 is a 100% Toyota affair. Excellent progressions also by the Nissan Serena (+112.9%), Toyota Harrier (+61.9%), Voxy (+38%) and Noah (+23.2%). The Honda StepWGN (+1115.5%!), Lexus NX350H (+708.1%), Suzuki Solio (+119.8%), Toyota Aqua (+106.8%) and Crown (+101.6%) also shine further back in the ranking. The Mazda CX-60 (#26) and Lexus RX500H (#42) are the two recent launches in the Top 50.

As far as kei cars are concerned, the Honda N-BOX (-3%) remains dominant despite a small year-on-year decline. The next three models all vastly outrun the market, with the Daihatsu Tanto (+64.8%) most dynamic ahead of the Daihatsu Move (+40.7%) and Suzuki Spacia (+31.8%). Note the Top 4 ranking is identical to March and YTD. Bar the Suzuki Alto (+10%) at #5 and the Daihatsu Taft (+5.5%) at #7, all remaining Top 10 members fall, with the Suzuki Hustler (-39.4%) and Nissan Roox (+28.4%) hit the hardest.

Previous month: Japan March 2023: Lexus (+204.9%) superstar again, sales up 11.6%

One year ago: Japan April 2022: 8th straight double-digit fall (-14.4%), Toyota Roomy #1 for first time, Nissan Ariya lands

Full April 2023 Top 50 All brands, Top 50 regular models and Top 35 All kei cars below.

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