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NZ sales: Records continue to fall in May

For rent: The Corolla was the second best-selling model in NZ last month, and is the most popular rental company purchase for the year to date.

May NZ LCV market up almost a third as overall sales continue smashing records

3 Jun 2017

NEW Zealand new vehicle sales jumped 17.5 per cent in May, with 13,132 passenger cars, SUVs and light commercials registered compared with 11,180 in the same period last year.

The Kiwi market has only breached 13,000 units in a month on seven previous occasions since New Zealand began recording combined passenger and commercial vehicle sales in 1981 – and it has happened three times so far this year.

Light-commercial vehicles stole the show with a huge 29 per cent leap, to 4745 sales, an all-time high since records began in 1975 and establishing a new high water mark for the month of May.

Meanwhile passenger cars and SUVs were up a respectable 11.8 per cent to 8387 units. Year-to-date sales are also at record levels, up 14.1 per cent to 63,167 units.

NZ Motor Industry Association president Glynn Tulloch said strong new vehicle registrations in May “confirms that the growth seen so far this year is sustainable and shows every sign of continuing”.

Mr Tulloch cited low interest rates, strong net immigration, favourable currency exchange and a “robust” domestic economy as reasons for the continued increase in new vehicle sales.

Medium SUVs represented the most popular segment overall, but the top three best-selling vehicles in May were utes – the Ford Ranger leading with 889 units (up 17.7 per cent), followed by the Toyota HiLux on 819 units (up 42.9 per cent) and Mitsubishi Triton at 501 units (up 103.7 per cent).

A trio of medium SUVs made the top 10 sales charts, led by the Toyota RAV4 in fourth position with 391 sales (up 57 per cent) and 218 of these going to the rental market, earning it a substantial 29.1 per cent share of that sector.

The Mazda CX-5 and Kia Sportage took up sixth and seventh positions with 330 (up 34.1 per cent) and 302 sales (no comparative data) respectively.

As has become usual, the only passenger car in the NZ top 10 was the Toyota Corolla, slipping to eighth position with 274 sales (down 13 per cent).

Year-to-date Corolla sales are still up 3.3 per cent at 1827 units, placing the Toyota small car a distant third after the Ranger (3800, up 20.1 per cent) and HiLux (3105, up 26.6 per cent). The Corolla was second-best seller overall in full-year results for 2016.

The rest of the best-sellers list was made up of the Holden Colorado (mid-table with 335 units but down 12.3 per cent), Toyota HiAce (ninth place with 274 units, up 37 per cent) and Isuzu D-Max (10th place with 252 units, up 46.5 per cent).

A commanding 18 per cent market share kept Toyota at top of the sales tree in May with 2370 units for the month, an increase of 35.2 per cent.

Ford’s 1.1 per cent sales reduction to 1495 units eroded its share from 13.5 per cent a year ago to 11.4 per cent share, while Mazda leapt 25.5 per cent to 1072 units, taking third place from Holden and gaining an 8.2 per cent share, up from 7.6 per cent a year ago.

Year to date, Toyota leads with 10,520 sales, up 18 per cent for a 16.7 per cent share. Ford is second with 7169 sales (up 6.1 per cent, (11.3 per cent share) and Holden holds onto third with 5767 units, up 16.7 per cent with a 9.1 per cent share.

NZ Top 10 makes May 2017
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