The diversity and multi-purpose capability of light commercial vehicles has seen private sales in this segment rise 10 per cent during November 2016 compared with November 2015, as Australia’s new vehicle market charges toward a record sales year according to the industry’s VFACTS figures released today.
Strong private sales of light commercials contributed to two models, both predominantly diesel-powered, leading the market for the second month in succession with sales of the market-topping Toyota Hilux up 14 per cent on November 2015 and the second-placed Ford Ranger up 12.6 per cent. The Nissan Navara was the third light commercial vehicle to join 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. The Northern Territory, South Australia, ACT, and Tasmania all recorded sales growth.
The Toyota Hilux led the November market with 3839 sales, followed by the Ford Ranger with 3410, with the Toyota Corolla in third place on 3245, followed by 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).