A rough month for Mazda, while Mitsubishi motored up the charts.

New vehicle sales dropped 5.5 percent on the same month in 2017, with a total of 94,711 registrations recorded. Queensland, Tasmania, Western Australia and Victoria all saw increases on last year, while the rest of the nation was down, led by a 4.4 per cent dive in New South Wales.

September follows two months of slow sales, leaving the  market 0.9 per cent behind year-to-date, with 881,005 registrations.

Passenger cars continued to slide, recording a 20.1 per cent drop on last year's sales, while light commercial vehicle sales also dropped 2.3 per cent on September 2017. SUVs defied the slump, continuing their strong year with a month 6.2 per cent stronger than the equivalent last year.

Only micro cars and people movers grew in the passenger segment, while medium and large SUV sales actually fell. Although those segments were down, a strong month for small SUVs – 13,263 sales, up 25.7 per cent – covered those losses.

Brands

Toyota maintained its dominance atop the sales charts, recording 17,386 sales for September. That's nine cars more than it managed in the same month last year, or a 0.1 per cent bump. Little wins, right? Its market share was 18.4 per cent, remarkable in such a crowded place.

Hyundai leapfrogged Mazda this month, storming into second place with 8110 sales – down 20 sales, or 0.2 per cent, on last year. Its share was 8.6 per cent. Also jumping Mazda was Mitsubishi, with 7622 sales. That's up 557 cars or 7.9 per cent on last year, with an 8.0 per cent market share.

As for Mazda itself? It endured a tough September, with 7070 sales representing a cut of 3258 sales – 31.5 per cent down on 2017. Nissan rounded out the top five, with a strong 5176 sales, up 1165 cars and 29.1 per cent on last year.

Ford came in sixth with 5084 registrations, down 1761 cars and 25.7 per cent, followed by Kia (5003, up 7.3 per cent), Subaru (4758, up 2.5 per cent), Volkswagen (4694, down 4.2 per cent) and Holden (4651, down 32.4 per cent).

That leaves Honda (4528, up 3.1 per cent) just outside the top 10, followed by Mercedes-Benz (3624), Isuzu Ute (2189), BMW (1859), Suzuki (1792), Audi (1583), Renault (896), Land Rover (753), Volvo Car (682) and Lexus (605).

Skoda fans will be distraught to know the brand has slipped from the top 20, with 520 sales.

Alfa Romeo continued its growth, with 17 more sales representing 17.9 per cent growth on last year. The brand is now 26.8 per cent up on 2017 year-to-date. Jaguar also defied the slump afflicting its luxury rivals, recording 276 sales for 65.3 per cent growth in September.

Both are coming off a low base, but you've gotta start somewhere. We said it last month, but Volvo is also flying on the XC60 and XC40's back, with 682 sales and 116.5 per cent growth last month.

Hyundai is finally seeing some big numbers for the Kona, with its September result pushing double what it managed in March. It also outdid the Mazda CX-3, a stalwart of the compact SUV game

Infiniti slumped after a strong August, with its 51 sales down 26.1 per cent on 2017, while Land Rover continued its rough run. The off-road brand dropped 344 sales on 2017, for a 31.4 per cent loss.

Jeep also battled, although we'd suggest stock of the new Cherokee arriving in dealers should rectify that pretty quickly.

BMW fell 2.5 per cent short of its 2017 September marker, while Audi saw an 11.6 per cent drop. Both brands have a wave of much-needed new product on the way, so stay tuned to see what impact it has.