The latest new-car data reveals there has been a 16.5 per cent year-on-year boost in the middle-tier, two-door coupe and convertible class. While the sub-$80,000 sports car segment dropped 4.7 per cent, the $200,000-plus sports car class soared 7.6 per cent.
Those are heady numbers for the most exclusive parts of a new car market that overall is down 2.8 per cent. To say they are outperforming other segments is an understatement – the light car class is down a whopping 20.8 per cent, while the best any SUV class could manage was the medium brigade, up 9.5 per cent.
Only $70,000-plus large cars are outperforming sports cars, up 36.9 per cent because the new BMW 5 Series (up 247 per cent) and Mercedes-Benz E-Class (up 123 per cent) are in a duel that is also crippling rivals. (Audi A6 fell 42 per cent, Jaguar XF plunged 55 per cent, while the Infiniti Q70 trickled to nought.)
So far this year 3073 Australians have purchased a sports car costing anywhere more than $80,000 compared with 2680 last year. And growth among the flash-brigade is wide spread.
The Audi R8 (with six times last year’s sales), Nissan GT-R (up 162 per cent), Lotus Elise (quadruple the haul on 2016) and McLaren (rising 270 per cent) stole the show, but Aston Martin two-doors are up 30.8 per cent this year, no doubt thanks to the all-new DB11.
Rolls-Royce two-doors are up 33.3 per cent, the Mercedes-Benz SL by 66.7 per cent and two-door Benz S-Class by 9.4 per cent, and even the Porsche 911 (up 14.9 per cent) and Bentley two-door range (up 3.4 per cent) are up. It’s especially impressive in a market down overall.