The Toyota Corolla has retained its title as Australia’s favourite passenger car for the eighth year in a row, although it has found itself under attack from other models – and continues to battle the buyer shift to SUVs.
Official new-car sales figures for 2020 published today by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries show that, while the Toyota HiLux ute led the overall market for the fifth year in a row, Toyota reported 25,882 Corolla sedans and hatches as sold last year to become the nation's top-selling passenger vehicle.
Although Toyota Corolla sales posted a decline of 15.1 per cent compared to the prior year, 2020 was a record result for the Toyota Corolla Hybrid, with the petrol-electric version accounting for 53.9 per cent of the model mix.
The Toyota Corolla’s nearest rival, the Hyundai i30, reported 20,734 cars as sold (a decline of 26.9 per cent) – however the figure includes the hatchback only.
From this year, Hyundai has changed the name of its small sedan from Elantra to i30 (pictured below), which will likely boost the overall sales tally and close the gap to the Toyota Corolla. (The Kia Cerato hatch and sedan ranked third in the small-car sales race in 2020, with 17,559 deliveries, down 19.3 per cent year-on-year).
The Toyota Corolla led the Australian new-car market outright in 2013, 2014 and 2015 (after overtaking the Mazda3 which was the top-seller in 2011 and 2012).
However, while the Toyota HiLux has led Australian new vehicle sales outright for the five years from 2016 to 2020, the Toyota Corolla has been the Number One passenger vehicle for the past eight years in a row.
While the Toyota Corolla has held onto top spot, it has done so while selling half the number of vehicles since its peak.
Toyota sold a record 47,901 examples of the Corolla in 2008, however last year it sold 25,882 – after six years in a row of decline.
MORE: Industry sales results