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Suzuki drops Celerio in Australia

Bye bye baby: The Celerio had its best sales year in Australia in 2015 – the year it launched – with 1399 units sold.

Slow-selling Celerio micro car gets cut from Suzuki’s local line-up

Suzuki logo21 Aug 2017

By TIM NICHOLSON

SUZUKI Australia has quietly discontinued its Celerio micro car after the Thai-built city hatch failed to catch on with buyers.

The Celerio was launched in Australia in February 2015 and received generally favourable reviews from the media, but its low sales have seen it pulled from the line-up, for now.

Suzuki has a number of similarly positioned models in its Australian roster which may have also had an impact on Celerio sales.

The Baleno light hatch is priced from $16,990 to 22,990 driveaway, the just-launched Swift is available in four grades from $15,990 to $22,990 driveaway and the tiny Ignis crossover that is priced from $16,990 to $19,990 driveaway.

Suzuki offered the Celerio in one specification grade and was powered by a 50kW/90Nm 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine, matched with either a five-speed manual gearbox from $12,990 driveaway, or $13,990 for the continuously-variable transmission version.

The Celerio replaced the Indian-sourced Alto that was Suzuki’s micro-car offering from 2009 to 2015.

In its first year on sale, Suzuki sold 1399 examples of the Celerio, falling by 47 per cent to 742 units in 2016.

So far this year, Suzuki has shifted just 141 Celerios, representing a 74.3 per cent drop over the first seven months of 2016.

Sales in Australia’s micro-car segment have been on the decline since the segment was officially recognised as part of the monthly VFACTS sales figures in 2013.

In that year, 22,874 micro cars were sold Down Under, before dipping by a whopping 30.8 per cent in 2014. By 2015 it had slowed to 15,828 sales, a slide of 32.3 per cent over 2014.

A number of new models launched last year into the segment ensured that sales remained relatively steady, dropping just 4.8 per cent compared with 2015.

Holden’s new Spark and the Kia Picanto were almost exclusively responsible for the strong result last year, with the Holden picking up 1760 sales , a 21.4 per cent lift, while the Kia hit 1934 units.

Mitsubishi’s Mirage hatchback remained the top seller in the segment in 2016 for the fourth consecutive year with 3064 sales, a big drop from its first year on the market in 2013 when the current-gen car recorded 9549 sales.

The Picanto – that arrived in new-generation guise in May – is the only car in the segment to experience sales growth so far this year, with the Korean hatch up 200.5 per cent to 1806 units, ensuring it is outselling the Mirage (1015), Spark (628) and Fiat 500 (443).

A number of manufacturers have pulled out of the micro-car segment in Australia, citing low sales and low dealer margins.

Nissan’s Micra, the Fiat Panda and Volkswagen’s Up have all been discontinued in recent years and now with the Celerio gone, it leaves just four nameplates in the segment – the Fiat 500, Holden Spark, Kia Picanto and Mitsubishi Mirage.

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