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Australian vehicle sales for April 2017 – utes continue charge

The Australian VFACTS sales figures for new vehicle registrations for April, 2017, show SUVs and utes are a continued trend in the market, with two utes making up the top two spots on the best-selling chart.

According to the figures, 31,368 SUVs were sold during April 2017, against 32,147 passengers cars. The ute segment, made up of only 14 model lines, contributed a whopping 14,922 sales.

As for the top-selling brands, Toyota remains the king of the castle with 16,090 sales during the month. This easily overshadows runner-up Mazda, with 8630 sales. Toyota sales are up 2.4 per cent year-to-date, while Mazda is up only 0.5 per cent. In terms of movements in the top 10, Kia slots into seventh from tenth, while Subaru moves up from nine to eight, and Nissan drops to tenth. The top 10 most popular car brands for April 2017 were as follows:

  1. Toyota – 16,090 (down from 19,652 of March 2017 sales)
  2. Mazda – 8630 (down from 10,472)
  3. Hyundai – 6850 (down from 8700)
  4. Holden – 5804 (down from 7211)
  5. Ford – 5802 (down from 6852)
  6. Mitsubishi – 5470 (down from 7583)
  7. Kia – 4120 (down from 4684)
  8. Subaru – 3854 (down from 5006)
  9. Volkswagen – 3867 (down from 5122)
  10. Nissan – 3350 (down from 5620)

Picking up the best-selling-car accolade is the Toyota HiLux (4×2 and 4×4 combined). It’s closely followed by the Ford Ranger, with the ever-popular Toyota Corolla pushed down to third. The only two SUVs in the top 10 are the Mazda CX-5, which has just been refreshed for 2017, and the Hyundai Tucson, which also underwent a minor update recently. The Kia Cerato moves in to round out the top 10. The top 10 best-selling vehicles for April 2017 were as follows:

  1. Toyota HiLux – 3430 (down from 4245)
  2. Ford Ranger – 3120 (down from 3845)
  3. Toyota Corolla – 2555 (down from 3574)
  4. Mazda3 – 2313 (down from 3039)
  5. Mazda CX-5 – 2166 (up from 2116)
  6. Hyundai i30 – 1979 (down from 2383)
  7. Toyota Camry – 1885 (down from 2336)
  8. Hyundai Tucson – 1530 (down from 2156)
  9. Holden Colorado – 1824 (down from 1927)
  10. Kia Cerato – 1490 (down from 1769)

Small Cars under $40,000 – Kicking off the vehicle segments we’ve now included the popular small car class. Being such a demanding segment we’ll include the top 10. The top 10 best-selling small cars in April were as follows:

  1. Toyota Corolla – 2555 (down from 3574 of March)
  2. Mazda3 – 2313 (down from 3039)
  3. Hyundai i30 – 1979 (down from 2383)
  4. Kia Cerato – 1490 (down from 1769)
  5. Volkswagen Golf – 1151 (down from 1504)
  6. Subaru Impreza – 1022 (down from 1168)
  7. Honda Civic – 985 (up from 787)
  8. Holden Astra – 792 (up from 719)
  9. Ford Focus – 504 (down from 520)
  10. Hyundai Elantra – 452 (down from 612)

Medium Cars under $60,000 – In the conventional car segment, we see the humble Toyota Camry continues its charge here. Runner-up Ford Mondeo is far behind, along with the Mazda6 and Subaru Liberty, despite offering similarly appealing characteristics. The top five best-selling models in this class for April were as follows:

  1. Toyota Camry – 1885 (down from 2336 of March)
  2. Ford Mondeo – 300 (equal)
  3. Mazda6 – 292 (down from 349)
  4. Volkswagen Passat – 245 (down from 260)
  5. Subaru Liberty – 162 (down from 209)

Medium Cars over $60,000 – Into the luxury sedans, it’s the Mercedes-Benz C-Class that everybody seems to be swarming to. It easily outsold its main German competitors once again in April. BMW 3 Series sales fell hugely, leaving room for the Audi A4 to swoop in. The top five best-selling vehicles in this class for April were as follows:

  1. Mercedes-Benz C-Class – 651 (down from 750)
  2. Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class – 285 (down from 356)
  3. Audi A4 – 239 (up from 177)
  4. BMW 3 Series – 141 (down from 252)/Lexus IS – 141 (down from 185)
  5. Jaguar XE – 83 (down from 104)

Large Cars under $70,000 – Over in the larger class, it’s very sad times for the Ford Falcon. Just seven buyers last month snapping up the last remaining new Falcons in the yard, pushing it out of the top five. We suspect this time next month this number will depressingly dissolve into zero. Holden Commodore sales are shrinking too, while Toyota Aurion figures remain stable over the past few months albeit very low. The top five best-selling vehicles in this class for April 2017 were as follows:

  1. Holden Commodore – 1441 (down from 2081)
  2. Toyota Aurion – 312 (up from 282)
  3. Skoda Superb – 77 (up from 64)
  4. Hyundai Genesis – 12 (down from 21)
  5. Peugeot 508 – 9 (down from 22)

Large Cars over $70,000 – Shifting up into the luxury segment, and we see the BMW 5 Series has overtaken the Mercedes E-Class in its usual dogfight for top spot. BMW posted impressive figures in April with the 5er. The E-Class is the only model that’s even close, with the Audi A6 far behind with the rest of the rivals. The top five best-selling vehicles in this segment in April were as follows:

  1. BMW 5 Series – 257 (up from 178)
  2. Mercedes-Benz E-Class – 144 (down from 200)
  3. Mercedes-Benz CLS – 22 (down from 30)
  4. Audi A6 – 31 (up from 22)
  5. Jaguar XF – 13 (down from 22)

Sports Car under $80,000 – Ford Mustang sales are still going very strong, and it’s good to see Ford is remaining consistent in terms of keeping up with the demand – although there is still said to be a decent waiting list. BMW moves into second spot with the 2 Series, with the Hyundai Veloster remaining in third. The top five best-selling vehicles in this class for April were as follows:

  1. Ford Mustang – 639 (up from 622 of March)
  2. BMW 2 Series Coupe/Convertible – 211 (up from 156)
  3. Hyundai Veloster – 180 (down from 191)
  4. Toyota 86 – 145 (down from 233)
  5. Mazda MX-5 – 124 (down from 178)
    (Subaru WRX – 165 [down from 272] – not officially in this segment, shown for comparison)

Sport Cars over $80,000 – In the classier side of the segment, the Mercedes C-Class two-door keeps posting big numbers. It easily outsold the next-best rival in terms of sales once again in April. Meanwhile 4 Series numbers tumble, enough to see the Audi A5 right on its heels.  Strangely, the BMW Z4 steps into the top five in April. The top five best-selling models in this category were as follows:

  1. Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe/Convertible – 219 (down from 350)
  2. BMW 4 Series Coupe/Convertible – 54 (down from 105)
  3. Audi A5 – 52 (down from 79)
  4. BMW Z4 – 43 (up from 9)
  5. Lexus RC – 38 (down from 47)

Sport Cars over $200,000 – For the outright sports car fans the Porsche 911 is the most popular. Lamborghini surprises with a second place in April, followed closely by Aston Martin. The top five best-selling vehicles in the class during March were as follows:

  1. Porsche 911 – 32 (down from 36)
  2. Lamborghini (not specified) – 12 (up from 5)
  3. Aston Martin – 11 (down from 17)
  4. McLaren (not specified) – 10 (up from 8)
  5. BMW 6 Series – 8/Bentley (not specified) – 8

Combined 4×2 and 4×4 ute – Of course the Toyota HiLux is still the king of the road here. The Ford Ranger is catching though, leaving the remainders well behind. Holden steps up to third with the Colorado in April, while all others stick to their places from the previous month. All models experienced a drop in sales compared with March figures. The top 10 best-selling utes (4×2 and 4×4 combined) for April were as follows:

  1. Toyota HiLux – 3430 (down from 4245 of March)
  2. Ford Ranger – 3120 (down from 3845)
  3. Holden Colorado – 1824 (down from 1927)
  4. Mitsubishi Triton – 1384 (down from 2670)
  5. Nissan Navara – 1379 (down from 1784)
  6. Isuzu D-Max – 1246 (down from 1424)
  7. Mazda BT-50 – 1031 (down from 1331)
  8. Volkswagen Amarok – 543 (down from 760)
  9. Great Wall Steed – 38 (down from 48)
  10. Foton Tunland – 37 (down from 46)

In the increasingly popular SUVs, it’s the Mazda CX-5 that takes the overall crown. The Hyundai Tucson is not too far behind, while the Land Rover Discovery Sport remains the best-selling premium SUV.

The ‘Medium under $60,000’ class is still the most popular, selling 11,213 units, up 12.1 per cent year-to-date. The second most popular class is ‘Large under $70,000′, with 8342 sales, up 0.7 per cent year-to-date. In third place it’s the ‘Small under $40,000’ category, with 6689 sales, down 6.3 per cent year-to-date.

The top three best-selling SUVs in all categories for April were as follows:

  • SUV Small under $40,000:
    Mitsubishi ASX – 1451 (down from 1384 of March)
    Mazda CX-3 – 1195 (down from 1601)
    Honda HR-V – 815 (down from 912)
  • SUV Small above $40,000:
    Audi Q3 – 280 (down from 307)
    Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class – 237 (up from 235)
    BMW X1 – 232 (down from 352)
  • SUV Medium above $60,000:
    Land Rover Discovery Sport – 257 (down from 575)
    Mercedes-Benz GLC – 239 (down from 369)
    Lexus NX – 235 (down from 347)
  • SUV Large above $70,000:
    BMW X5 – 247 (down from 308)
    Audi Q7 – 209 (up from 148)
    Mercedes-Benz GLE – 174 (down from 213)
  • SUV Upper Large above $100,000:
    Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class/GL – 87 (down from 104)
    Lexus LX – 29 (down from 39)
    Range Rover – 27 (down from 65)

Total new vehicle sales in Australia in April were down on March figures. During April, Australian consumers bought 83,135 vehicles compared with 105,410 in March. Overall sales are down 5.1 per cent compared with April 2016, and down 2.8 per cent year-to-date.

Brett is the editor and founder of PerformanceDrive. He’s obsessed with driving, having played with Matchbox cars until he was tall enough to drive a real one. After initially working as a mechanic, Brett earned a degree in journalism and entered media as an editorial assistant at Top Gear Australia magazine. He then worked at CarAdvice.com.au. His dream is to live next door to the Nurburgring in Germany.