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Australian vehicle sales for December 2012 – Audi trend evident

As reported earlier, the Mazda3 has taken the cake as the most popular selling new vehicle in Australia for 2012. In other areas though, there were a few surprises for the month, with Audi making top appearances in various segments.

Last month’s best-seller, the Toyota Corolla was relegated during December, knocked out of November’s best seller position by the Mazda3. Mazda sold 4649 examples last month, a record monthly sales figure for any Mazda model ever.

Toyota sold 3543 examples of the new Corolla (full review coming soon), down from November figures of 4190. The second-best-selling vehicle for December 2012 was the Toyota Camry, with 3586 sales, followed by the Corolla.

As for the Australian large sedans in the Large Cars under $70,000 segment, Holden sold 2198 Commodores in December, making for a 2012 total figure of 30,532. Meanwhile in the blue corner, Ford sold just 1111 Falcons (down from 1206 in November), making for a grim 2012 figure of 14,036.

Unfortunately, sales of both have been slowly spiralling downwards over the past few years. The previous year (2011), Holden sold 40,617 Commodores, while Ford sold 18,741 Falcons. Sales of the Ford Falcon have roughly halved since 2010 (29,516), while the Holden Commodore (2010: 45,956) isn’t far behind.

The only other large Australian sedan, the Toyota Aurion, remained steady in December, with 1255 sales. This contributed to an overall 2012 figure of 9074, up on 2011’s yearly sales of 8915.

Stepping into the Large Cars over $70,000 category, the Audi A6 made a surprise move for the month, with 94 sales, enough to overtake last month’s best seller in this segment, the BMW 5 Series (73), and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class (92). Overall for the year, the top five vehicle sales figures went like this:

1. BMW 5 Series – 1087
2. Mercedes-Benz E-Class – 1036
3. Audi A6 – 649
4. Jaguar XF – 648
5. Lexus GS – 624

In the Sports Car under $60,000 category, the Hyundai Veloster remained in front of the Toyota 86 during December 2012, with 449 sales versus 375 of the Toyota. The Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe was pushed back from second favourite last month to third in December, with 182 sales. Overall for the year, the top five vehicle sales figures in the segment went like this:

1. Hyundai Veloster – 4107
2. Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe – 2336
3. Toyota 86 – 2047
4. BMW 1 Series Coupe/Convertible – 1385
5. Kia Cerato Koup – 701

Stepping into the Sport Cars over $80,000 segment, it’s Audi moving up, again, this time with the Audi A5 (Audi RS 5 review here). It overtook last month’s favourite, the BMW 3 Series Coupe/Convertible (62), with 79 sales. The two were followed by the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe/Cabrio (64). Overall for the year, the top five vehicle sales figures in the category went like this:

1. Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe/Cabrio – 1034
2. Audi A5 – 944
3. BMW 3 Series Coupe/Convertible – 765
4. Mercedes-Benz SLK – 701
5. Audi TT – 293

At the most desirable end of the field, the Sports Cars above $200,000 was lead once again by the BMW 6 Series. It recorded 20 sales in December, followed by the Porsche 911 with 11 sales. Both remained in their positions from November. Overall for the year, the top five vehicle sales figures in the segment went like this:

1. Porsche 911 – 230
2. BMW 6 Series – 222
3. Maserati (models not specified) – 124
4. Ferrari (models not specified) – 98
5. Aston Martin coupe (models not specified) – 85

As for the somewhat sporty Medium Cars under $60,000 segment, the 2012 Toyota Camry held onto its big lead in December, posting 3586 sales. It was followed by the Mazda6 once again, with 611 sales. The Ford Modeo stepped onto the podium with 511 sales, kicking off the Subaru Liberty (328).

In the premium Medium Cars over $60,000 category, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class held onto its lead from November, with 706 sales, followed by the BMW 3 Series (2012 BMW 320i Sport Line review here), which posted 539 sales. The Audi A4 was just shy of its previous month’s figures, with 202 sales compared with 210 of November.

Overall for the year, the top five vehicle sales figures in both of the above segments went like this:

Under $60,000
1. Toyota Camry – 27,230
2. Mazda6 – 6558
3. Honda Accord Euro – 6155
4. Ford Mondeo – 5203
5. Subaru Liberty – 4407

Over $60,000
1. Mercedes-Benz C-Class – 6676
2. BMW 3 Series – 5493
3. Audi A4 – 2746
4. Lexus IS (250/350/IS F) – 2123
5. Audi A5 Sportback – 908

As for the very popular 4×4 ute segment, the Toyota HiLux may have been the overall favourite for combined 4×2 and 4×4 sales, with 3120 examples driving off the showroom floor, the Nissan Navara stepped into the number one spot. Nissan sold 2486 4×4 Navaras, surpassing the Toyota HiLux which made 2316 sales. Overall, the top ten 4×2 and 4×4 combined figures for December 2012 went like this (total 2012 sales in brackets):

1. Toyota HiLux – 3120 (40,646)
2. Nissan Navara – 2691 (23,940)
3. Ford Ranger – 1638 (18,097)
4. Holden Colorado – 1356 (12,902)
5. Mitsubishi Triton – 1195 (18,502)
6. Mazda BT-50 – 902 (11,848)
7. Volkswagen Amarok – 856 (6742)
8. Isuzu D-Max – 716 (7782)
9. Great Wall V200 – 242 (4793)
10. Great Wall V240 – 167 (2634)

Lastly, the SUV segments saw some interesting movements for the month compared with November. The Toyota RAV4 (1789) overtook the popular Mazda CX-5 (1506), while the Ford Territory (891) was pushed back from the top position and put into fourth from November, overtaken by the Toyota Prado (1313), Toyota Kluger (1199), and Holden Captiva 7 (944).

Audi also stepped up to the plate in a number of segments, dominating in the SUV Small above $40,000 and SUV Medium above $60,000 segments, with 137 Audi Q3 sales and 212 Q5 sales, respectively.

The BMW X5 (225) re-overtook the Mercedes-Benz ML-Class in their ongoing battle in the SUV Large over $70,000 segment. The BMW X5 posted 225 sales, against the ML-Class’s 209. The two were followed by the Land Rover Discovery (179).

In all SUV segments, the top-sellers for December comprised of the following (total 2012 sales in brackets):

SUV Small under $40,000:
Nissan Dualis – 1345 (13,141)
Hyundai ix35 – 1051 (11,469)
Subaru XV – 902 (9908)

SUV Small above $40,000:
Audi Q3 – 137 (1472)
BMW X1 – 102 (1464
MINI Countryman – 48 (516)

SUV Medium under $60,000:
Toyota RAV4 – 1789 (13,125)
Mazda CX-5 – 1506 (15,861)
Nissan X-Trail – 1059 (16,066

SUV Medium above $60,000:
Audi Q5 – 212 (2830)
BMW X3 – 190 (2500)
Range Rover Evoque – 158 (2496)

SUV Large under $70,000:
Toyota Prado – 1313 (17,045
Toyota Kluger – 1199 (13,239)
Holden Captive 7 – 944 (11,378)

SUV Large above $70,000:
BMW X5 – 225 (2778)
Mercedes-Benz ML-Class – 209 (2729)
Land Rover Discovery – 179 (1992)

SUV Upper Large under $100,000:
Toyota LandCruiser – 905 (10,829)
Nissan Patrol – 213 (3207)

SUV Upper Large above $100,000:
Lexus LX – 9 (181)
Mercedes-Benz GL-Class – 4 (304)
Mercedes-Benz G-Class – 3 (52)

Overall, new vehicle sales in Australia in December steadied off a bit compared with November, with 95,427 new vehicle registrations across the nation compared with 98,347 of November. It was still up on the 2011 December figures of 82,459.

In total, 1,112,032 new vehicles were sold in 2012. This is up quite a bit from the 2011 total of 1,008,437.

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.