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Car sales Strong in May

The Australian motor vehicle market has continued to generate strong growth, posting its fifth consecutive monthly record of the year in May.

Figures released today by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) show that 83,730 vehicles were sold last month - an increase 7 per cent on the previous record for May set last year.

Year to date the total sales of cars, sports utility vehicles (SUVs) and trucks is now running 5.5 per cent ahead of last year when an all-time record of 955,215 was set.

"At the current rate of growth, the motor vehicle market is well on track to reach the Chamber's forecast of 980,000 sales by the end of the year, said the FCAI Chief Executive," Peter Sturrock.

"Given that interest rates on motor vehicle finance remain relatively low and the five percent tariff cut at the beginning of the year improved the value-for- money proposition of many models, we believe the market will continue to run ahead of last year's levels," said Mr Sturrock.

A boom in small car sales was the main driver of market growth in May.

The Small passenger car segment rose 24.3 percent over the same month last year, accounting for 3,429 of the total market - 5,451 increase.

Other major contributors to the growth were the Medium car segment which was up 910 sales (27.6 per cent) and the Light car segment which increased by 818 or 12.3 per cent.

In the SUV Market the SUV Medium segment continued its long term growth trend - this time up 856 vehicles or 16.6 percent on the same month last year.

Year-to-date the SUV Medium segment is up 41.0 per cent over the same period last year while the total Sports Utility Market is up by 12.1 per cent for the year so far.

The top selling motor vehicle brand in May was Toyota with 16,841 or 20.1 per cent share of the market, ahead of Holden with 15,465 (18.5 per cent), Ford (11,177 and 13.3 per cent) and a resurgent Mitsubishi with 5,382 or 6.4 per cent.

On a year-to-date basis, Toyota continues to lead the market with 76,431 sales, 3311 units ahead of Holden.

For more information contact:
Andrew McKellar