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VFACTS: Mixed results as year end nears

Aussie made: The Toyota Camry was the best-selling Australian-built car last month with 2957 units, beating out the Holden Commodore that recorded 2088 sales.

Toyota battles itself for the overall best-selling model crown for 2016

5 Dec 2016

TOYOTA’S HiLux ute is on track to overtake its Corolla stablemate as the country’s top selling model this year, highlighting Australia’s growing obsession with one-tonne pick-ups as the small car segment continues to contract.

With just one month to go before the end of the year, the HiLux is outpacing the Corolla by just over 600 units after the Thai-built pick-up secured 3839 sales in November, while the small car was pushed back to third by Ford’s unstoppable Ranger.

The Ranger is about 4000 units behind the Corolla in year-to-date sales and it would take a mammoth effort this month to overtake the small-car leader.

Toyota’s overall sales of 18,162 represented a dip of 1.3 per cent when compared with November 2015, but the Australian-built Camry mid-sizer slipped into fourth spot with 2957 units shifted, giving Brand T three models in the top five.

Mazda experienced marginal growth of 0.2 per cent last month with a haul of 9825.

Each of Mazda’s passenger-car lines took a hit last month, with the Mazda3 small car dropping 7.3 per cent over last November, but a resurgent BT-50 pick-up in both 4x4 and 4x2 guise, as well as another impressive month for the CX-9 (921 units, up 253 per cent) kept the brand steady.

Hyundai fell by 5.0 per cent last month despite strong results for the Accent light car with 1995 sales (up 45.5 per cent) and the Tucson SUV that just missed a top-10 placing by four units.

Holden sales continued to slide in November, down by 12.8 per cent, with the Commodore slipping 20 per cent to seventh for the month on 2088 units, while sales of the recently updated Colorado 4x2 and 4x4 pick-up also falling.

The Australian-developed Spark hatch grew by 34.7 per cent last month, and along with the resurgent Mitsubishi Mirage, run-out Nissan Micra and the popular new Kia Picanto, helped lift sales in the struggling micro car segment by just under 90 per cent last month.

Ford’s Ranger 4x4, Mondeo, Transit van and the Kuga SUV all recorded strong gains last month, helping offset the loss of the Falcon and Territory which found 199 and 507 homes respectively and must now be down to the last remaining stock following the closure of the Victorian factory last in October.

The Blue Oval was 7.8 per cent ahead of November 2015, while Nissan dropped by 12.3 per cent. With the Japanese car-maker discontinuing the Micra, Pulsar hatch and Y61 Patrol in the coming months, it will be interesting to see the impact this has on Nissan’s registrations early next year.

Although the Navara pick-up and the X-Trail SUV dropped slightly over November 2015, both models placed equal tenth in the top 10 best sellers with 1938.

Mitsubishi had a successful month, with double or triple digit growth for a number of key models, including ASX, Mirage, Outlander and Triton 4x4, helping the car-maker hit 5875 units, a 13.7 per cent lift.

Volkswagen picked up the pace in November with big increases across its commercial vehicle range, while the Tiguan SUV hit its highest ever monthly sales, with 1028 new-generation sold and 150 of the outgoing model.

Subaru’s Impreza plummeted by 82 per cent to just 95 units last month, which is unsurprising given it is in run-out ahead of the new-gen version arriving later this month, but the Japanese brand was 6.6 per cent ahead of last November with 4141 sales and solid results for the Outback (1304), Forester (1159) and XV (814).

Mercedes-Benz hit 3584 sales last month – an 18 per cent boost – thanks to continued growth of the compact A-Class, CLA and GLA models as well as the GLE large SUV, while stock shortages held the popular GLC mid-size SUV back last month.

Benz beat out both Kia and Honda for a top-10 placing last month, but the race is on to see which brand will take the year-end 10th spot, with Kia on 39,354, Benz on 37,782 and Honda on 36,610 year to date.

Audi and BMW enjoyed a slight increase in sales last month, up 0.6 and 2.3 per cent respectively, but Lexus (-12.9 per cent) and Land Rover (-22.6 per cent) took a dive after an otherwise strong year for the two luxury brands.

Overall sales in Australia last month hit 98,937, which was a 0.3 per cent, or 298-unit increase over November 2015, and enough to ensure the market is 2.2 per cent ahead of the first 11 months of last year.

SUVs grew by 4.1 per cent as passenger cars contracted by 4.5 per cent, while light and heavy commercial registrations grew by 3.3 and 3.6 per cent respectively.

Business sales rose by 8.3 per cent last month as private (-5.1%), government (-2.7%) and rental (-2.5%) sales all took a hit.

With just one month to go before the end of the year, car-makers have started to ramp up their year-end deals in a bid to reach internal targets and secure a place in the top 10 best selling brands list.

Top 10 selling brands November 2016
BrandSalesVariance %
Top 10 selling models November 2016
Toyota HiLux3839
Ford Ranger3410
Toyota Corolla3245
Toyota Camry2957
Hyundai i302541
Holden Commodore2088
Hyundai Accent1995
Mazda CX-51956
Nissan Navara1938
Nissan X-Trail1938

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