THE Toyota Hilux was Australia’s best-selling 4x4 in 2016, scraping in by less than 200 units from the increasingly popular Ford Ranger.
In an overall market that has strengthened by two per cent to 1.18 million units, the Hilux is also Australia’s most popular new ‘car’ overall – 2016 being the first year a ute has outsold all of the popular passenger cars. Combined sales of 4x4 and 4x2 Toyota Hilux models place it in front of the Toyota Corolla (the previous sales champion) and the Hyundai i30 on the overall new-car sales leaderboard.
In another win for ‘utes’ the combined sales of Ranger 4x4 and 4x2 place it in fourth spot overall, in front of the Mazda3. Last year the Hilux finished third overall and the Ranger was fifth overall, which further highlights the rise of the ute.
Both Hilux and Ranger 4x4s also comfortably outsell their respective 4x2 variants, the Hilux by 3:1 and the Ranger by 5:1; although next year with the demise of the Falcon 4x2 ute that ratio will no doubt abate as Ranger 4x2 sales pick up.
The 4x4 market was even more dominated by utes in 2016 than it was in 2015, with eight of the ten best-sellers being load haulers rather than family wagons. While most of the usual suspects remain in the 4x4 top ten, the Jeep Grand Cherokee has disappeared and its place taken by the Volkswagen Amarok. The demise of the Jeep Grand Cherokee leaves Toyota’s Prado and LandCruiser 200 as the only non-utes in the top ten.
TEN BEST-SELLING 4X4S IN 2016:
1. Toyota Hilux (31,076 sales): With a full year of sales of the new generation Hilux, with its 2.8- and 2.4-litre diesels and six-speed manual and automatic gearboxes behind it, Hilux sales have climbed 5137 units, or around 20 per cent.
2. Ford Ranger (30,880): The Ford Ranger is the big mover in 2016 picking up some 7444 sales compared to 2015, a whopping increase of 32 per cent on its already strong 2015 sales. If this trend continues the Ranger will be number one in 2017.
3. Mitsubishi Triton (17,969): The Triton remains the third most popular 4x4 despite dropping more than 2800 sales in 2016 compared to 2015. 2016 was the first full year of sales of the new generation 2.4-litre Triton.
4. Holden Colorado (16,353): Holden’s Colorado retains its fourth place from 2015 and has increased sales by a modest 390. Holden will be hoping for better things in 2017 when sales of the vastly improved MY17 Colorado kick in.
5. Toyota Prado (14,730): Prado sales continue to slide in the face of increased competition from the likes of the Ford Everest and Toyota’s own Fortuner. Some 525 less Prados were sold in 2016 than 2015, although the Prado retains fifth spot overall and is comfortably the best-selling 4x4 wagon.
6. Nissan Navara (13,863): With a full year of sales of its new NP300 model Navara sales have jumped by 1591, yet the Navara retains its number six ranking in 2016.
7. Isuzu D-Max (11,321): Isuzu’s D-Max is consistent, selling 20 more in 2016 compared to 2015. However, with the Jeep Grand Cherokee dropping out of the top ten, the D-Max has moved up a spot.
8. Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series (10,899): Following on from a sales rise in 2015, LandCruiser 200 sales continue to strengthen. With an additional 2648 units sold in 2016 over 2015, it moves to number eight on this list. No doubt the 200’s growing popularity is in part due to diminishing competition from Nissan, with either its Patrol Y61 or Y62.
9. Mazda BT-50 (9489): With a mid-life refresh behind it Mazda’s BT-50 enjoyed 809 more sales in 2016 than in 2015, but it remains in ninth place. In this game of snakes and ladders, the BT-50 has climbed past the on-the-slide Grand Cherokee while being overtaken by the even faster climbing 200 Series.
10. Volkswagen Amarok (7495 sales): Despite a drop in sales of 132 units from 2015 to 2016, Volkswagen’s Amarok makes it into the top ten for the first time. VW will be hoping for even better results in 2017 with the arrival of the sizzling-hot V6 models.