Continued dominance in the small and medium segments, as well as a broad range of top-selling SUVs, makes Toyota a sales force to be reckoned with. The heavily discounted Camry continues to dominate the mid-size segment and provide a locally made four-cylinder alternative to the larger Holden Commodore and Ford Falcon. Corolla is again on track for top-selling status, while the newly released Hilux looks set to break ute sales records.
*Figures to the end of October 2015
The mighty SUV surge rolls on and Toyota is beautifully positioned to take advantage with recent updates to Prado and LandCruiser, while Fortuner brings more diesel muscle. New CH-R could slot in as a rival to the Mazda CX-3 and Honda HR-V before the end of 2016, but it’s more likely a 2017 proposition. So it’s up to the facelifted RAV4 to do the entry-level SUV heavy lifting. There’s also a new-generation Prius for a low-volume kick.
Maintaining focus on the brand. Despite flashes of brilliance such as the 86 sports coupe, Toyota is best known for being dependable, yet bland. As buyers realise other brands can do the dependable bit, but with some fizz thrown in (think Mazda and, occasionally, Hyundai), it means that Toyota needs to apply itself to maintain share. The company is also more exposed than most to the swing away from passenger cars – only because it sells so many of them.
Hard worker, but could apply itself better – and possibly needs to modify its own high standards. Toyota will again win the sales race in 2016; the question is by how much. Toyota has strength across every major segment, a loyal customer base and can expect modest growth from SUVs and the new Hilux. But it has been shedding market share since 2012.