A 10 per cent rise in light commercial vehicle sales in November headlined the charge towards a record year of new vehicle sales.
The industry’s VFACTS figures show that private sales of light commercial vehicles were up 10 per cent in November compared with the same month last year.
Two models, both predominantly diesel-powered, lead the market for the second month in succession. Sales of the market-topping Toyota Hilux were up 14 per cent on November 2015, while the second-placed Ford Ranger was up 12.6 per cent. The Nissan Navara made it three light commercial vehicles in the top 10 best sellers for the month.
The Chief Executive of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, Tony Weber, said the strong gain in light commercial sales was indicative of how the role of these vehicles has changed over time.
“Private buyers are increasingly using these dual cab utilities as a weekday workhorse and a weekend recreational vehicle,” Mr Weber said.
“The growing sophistication of these vehicles, with their passenger car comfort and equipment levels, family-sized cabins and strong towing capacity, positions them as an alternative to the traditional passenger car. More entrants to this light commercial market are on the way in coming years, so we can only expect this segment to grow.”
Total industry sales for November reached 98,937, a narrow gain of 0.3 per cent over the same month in 2015, but maintaining the industry’s momentum toward a record calendar year of sales in 2016.
Year to date the November outcome saw the industry top the million sales mark, with 1,079,370 vehicles sold – 2.2 per cent ahead of the same time last year.
During November passenger cars sales held a 40.3 per cent share of the total market, still narrowly ahead of the fast-rising SUV segment which built another 1.4 per cent gain over their November 2015 market share to capture 37.9 per cent of the November 2016 market. Light commercials also made ground to 18.8 per cent.
As the popularity of traditional passenger cars continues its slow decline this year, the market growth areas are in medium-sized SUVs (which accounted for 16.2 per cent of the total market last month, up 2 percentage points on November last year) and 4X4 pick-up and cab-chassis light trucks, up 0.6 percentage points to grab 12.9 per cent of the total market.
New South Wales and Victoria remain the two powerhouse states in vehicle sales nationally, even though NSW sales dipped by a modest 0.7 per cent in November. Victoria continued its strong sales, gaining 5.7 per cent on its November 2015 result. South Australia, ACT, Tasmania and the Northern Territory all recorded sales growth.
The Toyota Hilux led the November market with 3,839 sales followed by the Ford Ranger with 3,410, the Toyota Corolla in third place on 3,245, the Toyota Camry (2,957) and the Mazda3 (2,877).
Toyota was market leader in November with 18,162 sales and 18.4 per cent of the monthly market, followed by Mazda on 9,825 (9.9 per cent share), Hyundai on 7,991 (8.1 per cent), Holden (7,750, 7.8 per cent) and Ford (6,827, 6.9 per cent).
Year to date Toyota is the clear market leader with 17.6 per cent share, followed by Mazda on 10 per cent, Hyundai (8.8 per cent), Holden (8.0) and Ford (6.9).
The November 2016 market of 98,937 new vehicle sales is an increase of 298 vehicle sales or 0.3% on November 2015 (98,639). November 2016 (26) had one more selling day than November 2015, which resulted in a decrease of 140.3 vehicle sales per day.
The Passenger Vehicle Market is down 1,874 vehicle sales (-4.5%) over the same month last year; the Sports Utility Market is up by 1,466 vehicle sales (4.1%); the Light Commercial Market is up by 602 vehicle sales (3.3%), and the Heavy Commercial Vehicle Market is up by 104 vehicle sales (3.6%) versus November 2015.
Toyota was market leader in November, followed by Mazda and Hyundai. Toyota led Mazda with a margin of 8,337 vehicle sales or 8.5 market share points.
Australia’s top sellers
Year to date
Top-selling SUVs (year to date)