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VFACTS: Vehicle sales plunge 9.6 per cent

Keeping on: Toyota’s evergreen HiLux was again the top Australian new vehicle in June, helping Brand T grab 21,200 sales for an 18 per cent market share.

June vehicle sales hit seven-year low as more Australian buyers sit on their wallets

3 Jul 2019


FALLING interest rates and the re-election of the Coalition government have failed to stem the bleeding in the Australian new-vehicle market, with sales declining 9.6 per cent last month – the biggest monthly decline this year – according to official VFACTS data.


With 117,817 sales in June, the industry recorded its lowest June sales in seven years, shattering hopes that the market would stabilise as normal business resumed in Canberra after the May election, along with Reserve Bank measures to tickle the economy with record-low interest rates.


June is traditionally the biggest sales month of the year, with businesses – especially tradies – coming out to take advantage of end-of-financial-year offers and tax breaks.


However, business vehicle sales were down 10.5 per cent for the month, compared with a decline of private sales of 9.3 per cent.


With half of the year gone, vehicle sales are now running 8.4 per cent behind last year’s tally to the same point, at 554,466 units.


Federal Chamber of Automotive Industry chief executive Tony Weber said the June result reflected tough market conditions, including a tightening of financial lending, the drought and flood, and a strongly contested federal election.


“In addition, the continuing incursion of luxury-car tax on a federal level, and now in some cases on a state level as well, is a major disincentive,” he said. “It could just be the straw that breaks the camel’s back for the new-car buyer.”


The last time Australia’s new-vehicle market failed to make 118,000 units in June was in 2012 when the industry’s combined sales came to 112,566.


One thing that had not changed in all of that time has been the supremacy of Toyota, which last month topped the market with a whopping 21,200 sales.


While this is a decline of 8.5 per cent on its performance in June 2018, it lifted its June market share to 18 per cent.


Toyota’s HiLux was again king of the mountain, with 5396 sales, ahead of Ford’s Ranger (4851) and Hyundai’s i30 (3343).


Mazda came second with 10,806 sales – a drop of 13.3 per cent – ahead of Hyundai (10,001) and Mitsubishi (8891).


Mazda’s CX-5 was again the best-selling SUV (2911), but its Mazda3 small car suffered a 23.9 per cent fall in June sales, slipping behind the Hyundai i30 (3343), Toyota Corolla (3137) and Kia Cerato (2832) in the passenger-car market.


Kia was the only top-10 player to increase June sales over the corresponding month last year, selling 7200 vehicles (+1.9%) to take fifth spot ahead of Ford (7155, -4.5%) and Honda (6232, -11.1%).


Holden was again the biggest loser, with sales down 34.8 per cent to 4817 units. It is now clinging to 10th place on the sales ladder, having been leapfrogged by Kia, Volkswagen, Nissan and Honda this year.


As we have seen in recent years, the passenger-car market is taking the biggest flogging, down another 18.5 per cent in June.


The SUV segment held up better but still suffered a 4.7 per cent decline, while the light-commercial vehicle market fell 7.0 per cent.


Top 10 selling brands June 2019

Ranking Brand Sales Variance%
1 Toyota 21,200 -8.5
2 Mazda 10,806 -13.3
3 Hyundai 10,001 -4.2
4 Mitsubishi 8891 -13.1
5 Kia 7200 +1.9
6 Ford 7155 -4.5
7 Honda 6232 -11.1
8 Volkswagen 5793 -8.5
9 Nissan 5514 -16.5
10 Holden 4817 -34.8

Top 10 selling models June 2019

Ranking Make/Model Sales
1 Toyota HiLux 5396
2 Ford Ranger 4851
3 Hyundai i30 3343
4 Toyota Corolla 3137
5 Mazda CX-5 2911
6 Kia Cerato 2832
7 Mitsubishi Triton 2695
8 Mazda3 2533
9 Toyota RAV4 2449
10 Hyundai Tucson 2344

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