Australian new vehicle sales continued on their record-setting pace in October, but the big news was the return of an old favourite to the top of the individual leaderboard — the Toyota HiLux.
According to industry database VFACTS, Australian dealers sold 94,321 cars, SUVs and commercial vehicles last month, up 3.4 per cent and making it the second biggest October on record after 2012.
Annual sales have also grown to 957,152 units, which is 3.6 per cent higher than at the same time in 2014. This puts the market on track to eclipse the previous full-year sales record of 1.136 million sales set in 2013.
The star of the show was the new Toyota HiLux, which launched locally at the very end of September. It immediately reasserted its position as Australia’s top-selling vehicle with 3339 deliveries, most of which were of the new version.
Toyota’s executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said 4×4 HiLux variants had achieved their best October sales on record with overall HiLux demand trending even higher than the company had expected.
“Toyota dealers took more than 4000 new HiLux orders during the month… our dealers are already writing orders for delivery into 2016,” he said.
The Toyota staple was one of only two light commercial vehicles inside the top-10-selling vehicles list alongside the Ford Ranger in fourth with 2597. But remarkably, the HiLux was one of four Toyota vehicles in the same top 10 list.
The full top-10 was full of usual favourites albeit in different orders. Following the HiLux (3339) were the Toyota Corolla (3271); Hyundai i30 (2669); Ranger (2597); Mazda 3 (2582); Holden Commodore (2243); Toyota Camry (2141); Mazda CX-5 (2037); Volkswagen Golf (1733) and Toyota RAV4 (1685).
That said, if Hyundai Australia were able to call the Elantra the i30 sedan as per its wont, it would have had the nation’s top-selling car again. The i30 and Elantra’s combined sales were 3425.
The top 10 brands were: Toyota (16,964, down 2.4 per cent); Hyundai (9003, up 7.2 per cent); Mazda (8532, up 24 per cent); Holden (8088, up 7.2 per cent); Ford (6098, down 3.8 per cent); Nissan (5961, up 3.5 per cent); Mitsubishi (5508, up 7.7 per cent); Volkswagen (4480, down 6 per cent); Subaru (4112, up 2.7 per cent) and Honda (3261, up 24.2 per cent).
Volkswagen’s fall into the negative column is interesting, given that company’s solid sales march up the ladder over the past few years. Naturally, that company has been caught up in its share of controversy lately.
Hot on the heels of these were Kia (2867, up 35.7 per cent); Mercedes-Benz (2619, down 16.9 per cent); Audi (2030, up 25.9 per cent); BMW (2001, up 4.9 per cent) and Isuzu Ute (1760, up 40.5 per cent).
So, what are some of the elements that stood out?
Several lower-selling brands showed good growth in October. These included Jaguar (161, up 51.9 per cent); Land Rover (1072, up 24.4 per cent); LDV (105, up 43.8 per cent); Mini (263, up 20.6 per cent); Porsche (361, up 77.8 per cent); Skoda (412, up 16.4 per cent); Suzuki (1510, up 8.7 per cent) and Volvo Car (469, up 103.9 per cent).
Likewise, a few went in the other direction. Alfa Romeo (114, down 12.3 per cent); Chrysler (73, down 37.1 per cent); Citroen (69, down 43 per cent); Dodge (63, down 61.6 per cent); Fiat (195, down 57.6 per cent); Jeep (1505, down 42.7 per cent); Peugeot (332, down 17 per cent); Proton (35, down 47.8 per cent); Renault (798, down 26.2 per cent) and Ssangyong (77, down 20.6 per cent) all lost ground.
The gap between passenger vehicles and SUVs — a blurred line anyway — continued to shrink. Passenger car sales totalled 40,856 (down 5.3 per cent) against SUVs on 34,744 (up 20.5 per cent). Light commercials tallied 16,028 (down 1.9 per cent) and heavy commercials made up the numbers on 2693 (down 8.3 per cent).
Private sales dropped everywhere but in SUVs (up 17.9 per cent), but business sales and rental sales grew across the board. Sales of all manner of vehicle types to government departments were down.
Small passenger cars remained the biggest segment despite a 10.2 per cent drop to 18,582 units. The next biggest segments were Medium SUV (12,843, up 20.1 per cent); Large SUV (11,190, up 11.8 per cent); 4×4 Ute (10,949 up 0.7 per cent) and Small SUV (9723, up a massive 37 per cent and eating into the small passenger market’s share).
Other fast-growing segments were people-movers (up 35.3 per cent) and mid-sized cars (up 8.3 per cent). Other segments that dropped were sports cars (down 23.6 per cent); light vans (down 41.9 per cent) and medium vans (down 14.8 per cent).
For a full segment-by-segment breakdown head to the bottom of the story.
Reflecting what we have seen all year, registrations in WA (8534, the fourth-biggest state) and NT (785, the smallest market) went backwards, by 10.5 per cent and 5 per cent respectively. All other states/territories grew, comprising NSW (31,196); Victoria (26,503); Queensland (18,246); South Australia (5825); Tasmania (1719) and ACT (1513).
As usual, our top source of vehicles was Japan with 27,507 imports (up 2.6 per cent), followed by Thailand (21,211, up 17.4 per cent); South Korea (12,214, up 16.7 per cent); Australia (7150, down 6.9 per cent); Germany (6836, down 3.6 per cent) and the US (4137, down 22.6 per cent).
A few interesting tidbits:
Top 10 brands October 2015:
Top 10 models October 2015:
Micro (957, down 2.4 per cent):
Light under $25K (8156, down 2.3 per cent):
Light over $25K (380, down 0.8 per cent):
Small under $40K (17,160, down 10.2 per cent
Small over $40K (1422, up 2.1 per cent):
Medium under $60K (4317, up 11.5 per cent):
Medium over $60K (2360, up 2.9 per cent):
Large under $70K (3033, down 2.2 per cent):
Large over $70K (284, down 29.4 per cent):
Upper Large under $100K (179, down 9.1 per cent):
Upper Large above $100K (71, up 7.6 per cent):
People-movers under $60K (908, up 38.8 per cent):
People-movers over $60K (42, up 12.5 per cent):
Sports under $80K (1050, down 26.2 per cent):
Sports over $80K (430, down 22.5 per cent):
Sports over $200K (107, up 8.1 per cent).:
SUV Small under $40K (8678, up 36.2 per cent):
SUV Small over $40K (1045, up 43.5 per cent):
SUV Medium under $60K (11,344, up 19.9 per cent):
SUV Medium over $60K (1499, up 22.1 per cent):
SUV Large under $70K (9292, up 10.2 per cent)H
SUV Large over $70K (1898, up 20.5 per cent).
SUV Upper Large under $100K (867, down 7.5 per cent):
SUV Upper Large over $100K (121, up 16.3 per cent):
Light Vans (190, down 41.9 per cent):
Medium Vans (1349, down 14.8 per cent):
4×2 utes (3291, up 1.2 per cent):
4×4 utes (10,949, up 0.7 per cent):