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NZ Sales: New stock drives record April sales

High Ranger: The Ford Ranger returned to the top of the sales charts last month as Toyota maintained its stranglehold on the market.

New Zealand posts its strongest April on record as new-vehicle market flourishes

4 May 2021

NEW Zealand’s new-car market keeps going from strength to strength, having just posted its strongest April on record with 13,133 registrations, meaning the market is now up 62.4 per cent so far this year to date.


After the dismal 1039 units that were sold in a lockdown-ravaged April 2020, Motor Industry Association (MIA) chief executive David Crawford attributed the record month to the arrival of some much-needed stock.


Unsurprisingly it was Toyota who once again sat atop the sales charts with an unwavering 17 per cent stranglehold on the market (2235 units), once again followed by Mitsubishi (1589/12%) and Ford (1419/11%) in second and third respectively.


It was also a case of as you were for Kia (1090/8%) and Mazda (821/6%) in fourth and fifth while Hyundai leapfrogged Nissan and Suzuki to pinch sixth with 685 sales (5% share).


Hyundai’s success inevitably bumped Nissan (682/5%) down to seventh, once again leading Suzuki (655/5%) in eighth.


Volkswagen held onto ninth place with its 458 sales earning it a three per cent market share while Chinese brand MG finally cracked the top 10 with 249 sales (2%).


For the first time in months the Toyota HiLux was dethroned as the best-selling vehicle in New Zealand (for the month), beaten into second by its age-old rival the Ford Ranger, of which 1026 new examples found homes compared to the 781 HiLuxs.


The margin between the two workhorses year-to-date is now down to just three units in favour of the HiLux (3351 vs 3348).


While pick-up trucks ruled the top two spots in April, it was small and medium SUVs that dominated the top 10 with five representations, lead by the new, pint-sized Kia Stonic in third with 625 sales.


Fourth place went to the venerable and ever-popular Mitsubishi Outlander medium SUV (531) ahead of Toyota’s mid-sized offering, the RAV4 (477), in fifth.


The RAV4 found itself in a triple-diamond sandwich in April with the Mitsubishi ASX (406) and Triton (364) finishing the month in sixth and seventh respectively.


The Mazda CX-5 slipped down to eighth with 269 sales, just three units clear of the Toyota Corolla (266) in ninth and Suzuki Swift (241) in tenth – the only two traditional passenger cars to crack the top 10.


With such a strong showing in the top 10, it should come as little surprise that compact SUVs were again the most popular class of vehicle with 3458 new examples registered, accounting for a 26 per cent share of the total market.


Medium SUVs were once again the runners up with 2285 sales (17%) while 2171 of the 13,133 new vehicles sold in April were 4x4 pick-ups.


Electrified vehicle sales slipped marginally in April compared to March (1405 vs 1429), the bulk of which were hybrids (1102).


Of the remaining 303 green vehicles, 177 of them were battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and 126 were plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) – both down considerably on the 424 BEVs and 150 PHEVs sold in March.


In terms of the market leaders, the best-selling hybrid was the Toyota RAV4 (348), the best-selling BEV was the Hyundai Kona Electric (67) while the preferred PHEV was the Mitsubishi Outlander (56).


NZ Top 10 Brands April 2021

Rank Brand Sales Share %
1 Toyota 2235 17
2 Mitsubishi 1589 12
3 Ford 1419 11
4 Kia 1090 8
5 Mazda 821 6
6 Hyundai 685 5
7 Nissan 682 5
8 Suzuki 655 5
9 Volkswagen 458 3
10 MG 249 2


NZ Top 10 Models April 2021

Rank Model Sales
1 Ford Ranger 1026
2 Toyota HiLux 781
3 Kia Stonic 625
4 Mitsubishi Outlander 531
5 Toyota RAV4 477
6 Mitsubishi ASX 406
7 Mitsubishi Triton 364
8 Mazda CX-5 269
9 Toyota Corolla 266
10 Suzuki Swift 241

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