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NZ sales: Election can’t slow growth
New September record as new-car buyers unfazed by NZ general election
4 Oct 2017
NEW Zealand’s general election failed to slow new-car market last month, with Kiwis snapping up 14,507 new vehicles, more than any previous September.
The record haul was 4.5 per cent ahead of September 2016’s result and means that year-to-date registrations of 118,256 are 10.4 per cent, or 11,165 units ahead of the first nine months of last year.
Sales of SUVs and passenger cars continued to climb, up 6.8 per cent with 9855 units, while the expanding light-commercial vehicle segment grew by 18.6 per cent over last September with 4652 sales recorded.
NZ Motor Industry Association chief executive officer David Crawford said the traditional slowing of new-car sales over an election period “failed to materialise”.
He added that a stable economy was helping to ensure continued growth in the market.
“As the 2017 year progresses, economic conditions of the last 18 months remain largely unchanged, with low interest rates, strong net immigration, strong New Zealand currency and stable domestic economy,” he said. “The combination of these factors underpins record sales of new vehicles.”
Mid-size SUVs were the favourite vehicle type in NZ last month, capturing a 16 per cent market share, followed by 4x4 pick-up/cab-chassis on 13 per cent and small passenger cars on 12 per cent.
Toyota surprised nobody by maintaining its position as the overall market leader with a haul of 3473 units, representing a massive 43.3 per cent jump over the corresponding month last year, for 23.9 per cent market share The solid result for Brand T was spurred on by the Corolla and HiLux which grabbed 957 and 791 sales respectively to nab the top two spots on the overall best-selling models chart.
Another three Toyota models landed in the top 10 last month, including the RAV4 (516) in fourth spot, the HiAce van (339) in seventh and the Yaris (305) in ninth, while the Highlander/Kluger (262) just missed out in eleventh place.
The big result for HiLux meant it outpaced Ford’s previously unstoppable Ranger for the second month in a row, but the Aussie-developed pick-up held on to third spot with 781 sales, as well as holding onto the top spot year to date, outselling the HiLux by a little more than 800 units.
Holden continued its sales slide, dropping 15.2 per cent to 1386 units, despite continued growth for the Colorado pick-up which found 353 homes last month for a sixth placing.
The Colorado also stuck to fourth spot overall year-to-date with 3425 units to sit just behind the third-placed Corolla.
Mazda sales grew by just five units over September 2016, with the CX-5 its biggest seller last month (253) and so far this year (2363).
Solid interest in Mitsubishi’s Triton, ASX and Outlander pushed its sales up 11 per cent to 1020 units, widening the gap to fellow alliance member Nissan which took a 19.6 per cent tumble last month, with 657 units shifted.
Hyundai held onto seventh spot with 606 sales, a 24.7 per cent dip over last September, while sister brand Kia lifted 10.5 per cent to nab 556 sales, with the Sportage remaining in the top 10 with 314 sales.
Suzuki (554 sales, +9.9%) and Volkswagen (430 sales, -13.8%) rounded out the top 10.
The year-to-date top 10 brands match the September rankings except Kia and Suzuki swapped places.
Toyota captured the most passenger and SUV sales for a 24 per cent market share, followed by Holden on 10 per cent and Mazda on nine per cent, with the Corolla (957), RAV4 (516) and Kia Sportage (314) the most popular in the segment.
The LCV segment was topped by Toyota with a 25 per cent share, with Ford (19 per cent) and Holden (8.0 per cent) trailing, with the HiLux (791), Ranger (781) and Triton (373) the best-selling commercial vehicles.
Toyota’s Corolla, RAV4, Yaris and Highlander, as well as the Holden Trax were the highest selling rental cars in NZ last month.
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