New car sales in Australia dropped slightly during May, however year-to-date sales are still 2.1 percent ahead of the same month in 2017, figures released today show.
According to the VFACTs figures, Australia-wide sales in May hit 100,754 as traditional passenger car sales slumped severely, mainly because mum and dad buyers kept their bank accounts topped up for the month.
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The slow May was also 2.1 percent down compared with the same month last year.
The Toyota Hilux trade ute continued as the top-selling vehicle for the month, snaring 4385 sales, a 5.6 percent rise compared to May 2017.
Likewise, the Ford Ranger trade ute (3674) filled second place as the war for market dominance between the two worksite rivals heats up.
Just nine sales separated the two in May when just the higher-priced 4x4 segment sales are taken into account, with Toyota traditionally much stronger in the showroom on the more workmanlike 4x2 models.
The Mazda’s sales are a better indication of the heat of the Australian market, as the brand sells almost exclusively to private buyers, and doesn’t rely on bulk deals with fleets and rental companies to bolster its monthly sales.
Mazda’s updated CX-5 ranked as Australia’s best-selling SUV in May, attracting 2382 buyers to hold off the next-best placed high-riding hatchback, the Toyota RAV4 (2063). Mitsubishi’s ASX – a close rival to both the CX-5 and the RAV4 – slipped in behind them with 2029 sales.
The Volkswagen Golf (1951 sales) stands as Australia’s third best-selling hatchback in May ahead of another five-door model, the Kia Cerato (1843).
Rounding out the top 10 passenger cars were the Hyundai Tucson SUV (1839 sales) and the Toyota Prado (1712), indicating there are still plenty of Aussies out there dreaming about an outback adventure.
Toyota dominated the market ahead of Mazda and Hyundai in what was a slightly slower month for most brands.
The stand-out negative performance was Holden, which slipped two places to eighth on the charts as it struggles to hold ground after the loss of Australian manufacturing in October last year. Hardest hit was the Holden Commodore, down to just 1040 for the month and number 23 on the list of the nation’s best-selling passenger cars – a low watermark for the model.
Luxury sports car and performance SUV brand Porsche struggled for the month, falling to 260 sales to end May down almost 40 percent on the same month last year.
That was mostly down to much slower sales of the Porsche Macan SUV and its soon-to-be updated larger sibling the Cayenne that make up two thirds of the brand’s monthly numbers.