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VFACTS: Toyota dominates, Holden paces

Holden on: Japanese car-maker Toyota recorded double the sales of Holden in Australia last month.

GM Holden says it did not chase market share in June as rivals push sales to record

4 Jul 2012

TOYOTA sold twice as many vehicles as nearest rival Holden last month as the Japanese manufacturer helped to drive the Australian motor vehicle market to a record-smashing 112,566 sales in June.

Official VFACTS figures released today show vehicle sales even outpaced the industry’s most optimistic predictions, comfortably surpassing the previous monthly sales record of 108,722 set in June 2010.

Year to date, the industry has sold 547,857 vehicles, up a healthy 10.4 per cent on 2011 when many Japanese manufacturers were struggling for stock due to the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

Last month, industry leader Toyota changed up a gear to shift 21,649 vehicles, compared with Holden’s 10,632.

It was Holden’s turn to go backwards, hampered by a lack of Colorado ute stock, declining sales of its Commodore large car and an unwillingness to throw money at the market to move metal.

Even though Holden had its biggest sales month of the year, eclipsing the 10,196 Holden vehicles sold in March, its June result represented the lion brand’s lowest June tally in memory, dragging its monthly market share down to 9.4 per cent for the second month in a row.

106 center imageFrom top: Toyota HiLux Holden Cruze Mazda3 Ford Territory.

With the first half of the year gone, Holden has shed 2.3 percentage points of market share, currently sitting at 10.3 per cent compared with 12.6 per cent at the same time last year.

Holden sales director Philip Brook acknowledged that June had been a tough month for Holden, due to aggressive end-of-financial-year competition and limited supply of key models.

“There is extremely aggressive competition in the market, but we are focussed on managing our business in a sustainable and responsible manner,” he said.

“We won’t chase market share at the expense of profit or long-term residual values.”

Holden’s once-unbeatable Commodore recorded just 2743 sales in June, slithering all the way down to a record low eighth place on the monthly sales ladder, not only behind its own stablemate, the Cruze small car (3057), but also the Nissan Navara (3034), Hyundai i30 (3024) and Volkswagen Golf (2746).

In June, Toyota was helped by the return to full strength of its top-selling HiLux ute, which achieved 4308 sales last month – its second-best effort for the year – to top the national sales chart for the third successive month.

To put that in perspective, if HiLux was a car company, it would be ranked ninth in the industry in June, outselling Honda and Subaru.

However, HiLux – which has been playing catch-up after the Thai floods crippled supply earlier this year – still trails Mazda’s big-selling small car and reigning national sales champion, the Mazda3, in the battle to be the nation’s top seller this year, 21,813 to 19,412.

The Mazda3 was a big contributor to the number-one full-line importer’s record June sales figure of 9593 vehicles – up 11.2 per cent on June last year.

The Mazda small car was well supported by the new CX-5, which topped the SUV market with 1955 sales last month.

All this Mazda success could not prevent Hyundai from moving into third place in the monthly rankings behind Toyota and Holden.

The South Korean company pulled out all the stops to achieve 9672 sales for the month, compared with Mazda’s 9593.

Year to date, however, Mazda remains ahead 52,133 to 45,306.

Ford held ground in fifth place in June, selling 9140 vehicles – a tick down on its tally for the same month last year.

Stood-down workers at its Victorian factories would be cheered by the locally made Territory’s 1800 sales in June – the SUV’s best result in five years – but not the continuing decline of the related Falcon, which was down 22.5 per cent year on year to 1431 units.

Surprisingly, Ford sold 3850 of its locally made large vehicles – Falcon, Falcon Ute and Territory – marking a rare win over rival Holden, which sold a total of 3725 Commodores, Caprices and Holden Utes.

Nissan, which has ambitions to be Australia’s leading importer, had one of its biggest sales months in its history in Australia, shoveling 8330 vehicles out of showroom doors to lay claim to sixth place, ahead of Mitsubishi (6498) and a fast-charging Volkswagen (6446).

VW sales are up a whopping 31.5 per cent this year and, unlike Japanese rivals, that growth is not coming off an artificially low base caused by stock shortages at this time last year.

Top 10 companies in June 2012:

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