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NZ sales: Records fall in May

High and mighty: The Toyota Highlander – dubbed Kluger in Australia – was the top-selling SUV in NZ in May, thanks in part to strong rental fleet sales.

Biggest May on record in NZ led by growing pick-up and SUV sales

7 Jun 2018

NEW Zealand new-vehicle sales hit another high last month with 14,169 passenger cars, SUVs and light commercials sold in a record May result.
The haul is a 7.9 per cent lift over May in 2017 and helps push the overall year-to-date total to 64,889 units, a 2.7 per cent uptick over the first five months of last year.
NZ Motor Industry Association chief executive officer David Crawford said a number of factors, including sales in the lead up to NZ’s annual field days, helped to drive the increase.
“The market for new vehicles continues to operate at historically high levels with registrations underpinned by a range of positive economic factors and a wide choice of models at competitive prices,” he said.
Sales of passenger cars and SUVs shot up in NZ last month by 10.5 per cent, to 9276, while 4893 commercial vehicles were registered, representing a 3.0 per cent boost over May 2017.
Of the top 10 best-selling models in NZ last month, just one was a traditional passenger car – the Toyota Corolla, which held on to 10th spot with 295 sales.
Four of the top-10 models were SUVs and the rest were one-tonne pick-ups. In fact, four of the top five models were utes, led by the Ford Ranger that topped the market with a massive 1017-unit haul, almost doubling the 582 sales recorded by its arch-rival Toyota HiLux.
Toyota’s Highlander (Kluger) raced up the charts to third overall with 467 sales – including 390 rental sales – followed by the Nissan Navara with 466 sales and the Mitsubishi Triton on 437.
The Colorado ute was Holden’s top seller for the month, placed sixth with 410 sales, followed by the Toyota RAV4 (391), Mazda CX-5 (375) and Kia Sportage (324).
Toyota surprised nobody by selling the most vehicles last month, its 2569 units representing an 8.4 hike over May 2017.
Ford followed with a tally of 1619 units, an 8.3 per cent lift on May 2017, while Mazda barely moved, up just 0.3 per cent to 1076 sales, thanks to strong results for the CX-5 as well as the Mazda3 and BT-50 ute.
Holden trailed Mazda by just four units last month, with its 1072 sales representing a 4.2 boost from the Colorado and better than average Captiva sales (259).
Mitsubishi grew by just 0.8 per cent with 1037 sales, helped along by the Triton and the Outlander SUV (184).
Hyundai had a cracking month, with sales up by 38.5 per cent to 911 sales after big spikes for the runout Santa Fe (213) ahead of the imminent new model and the freshly launched Kona crossover (173). 
Nissan relied on its Navara pick-up for the bulk of sales Overall Nissan sales grew 17.2 per cent to 734, while Kia hit eighth overall with 619 sales (+12.7%) after a big month for the Sportage.
Suzuki (545) sales dipped by just two units over last May, with the Swift its best seller on 253 units, while Volkswagen rounded out the top 10 on 541 units, the exact number it achieved in May 2017.
Toyota smashed the rental sales chart last month, hogging seven spots (including the top three places) in the top 10, with the Ford Ranger (fourth) and Hyundai Santa Fe (ninth) and i30 (10th) also making the cut.
The medium SUV segment was the most popular among NZ buyers last month, capturing a 16 per cent share, followed closely by 4x4 pick-up/cab chassis on 15 per cent and large SUV also on 15 per cent.
The MIA said SUVs accounted for 43 per cent of sales last month, while light commercials made up 30 per cent, “reflecting the continuing shift in purchasing patterns”.

NZ top 10 makes May 2018

Ranking Brand Sales Share %
1 Toyota 2569 18.1
2 Ford 1619 11.4
3 Mazda 1076 7.6
4 Holden 1072 7.6
5 Mitsubishi 1037 7.3
6 Hyundai 911 6.4
7 Nissan 734 5.2
8 Kia 619 4.4
9 Suzuki 545 3.8
10 Volkswagen 541 3.8

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