NEW VEHICLE SALES REFLECT SLOWING ECONOMY

3rd October, 2008

New figures show that vehicle sales remained softer in September, reflecting the broader slow down in the Australian economy.

Official VFACTS data released today by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) show that 80,938 cars, trucks and buses were sold in September – down 3.1 per cent (2,551 vehicles) compared to the same month last year.

Year-to-date, new vehicles sales are up 0.3 per cent compared to the same period last year with a total of 784,932 vehicles being sold.

“The September figures provide further evidence that car buyers are cautious about the current economic situation and outlook,” FCAI Chief Executive Andrew McKellar said.

“The trend in sales over recent months provides justification for further action to cut interest rates as soon as possible,” he said.

“The industry is looking to rebuild confidence in the marketplace and decisive action to take further pressure off interest rates will provide some welcome relief to motorists,” Mr McKellar said.

Sales in most passenger car and SUV segments were down, except for small cars (up 4.1 per cent), medium cars (up 1.0 per cent) and large SUVs (up 48 per cent).

Light commercial vehicle sales held up well in September with an increase of 559 vehicles or 4.0 per cent compared to the same month last year.

Sales of light buses (up 73.1 per cent), vans (up 29.1 per cent) and 4x2 pick-ups (up 5.5 per cent) were the key performers in that segment.

Toyota retained the top sales position in September with a market share of 22.4 per cent, followed by Holden with 13.1 per cent and Ford with 11.0 per cent.

Year-to-date Toyota sold 183,806 vehicles, followed by Holden with 99,600 vehicles and Fold with 81,416 vehicles.

For further information contact:
Sheena Ireland, Communications Manager
P: 02 6229 8221
M: 0458 038 555
E: sheena.ireland@fcai.com.au

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