TOYOTA might be popping the champagne corks after winning the 2014 sales race, but not every carmaker succeeded in Australia last year. In fact some, like Great Wall, failed. Miserably.
The Chinese company moved just 2637 cars in 2014, a drastic 56.8 percent drop from its efforts in 2013. Every variant in Great Wall’s six-model range was down, but it’s far from the only cellar-dwelling Chinese manufacturer.
Chery, which held the title of selling Australia’s cheapest car, the $9990 J1, until it was axed after failing to meet new safety laws, endured a dismal 2014 to move just 592 vehicles, a drop of 34.4 percent.
American brand Chrysler was a fellow 2014 loser, with its two-car range down 38.1 percent after Australians bought just 77 Voyagers (down 54.2 percent) and 1580 300s (down 37.0 percent).
Suzuki also endured a tough 2014, selling 17,422 cars, a drop of 21.1 percent, thanks to poor efforts from the Alto, Kizashi and Jimny.
There’s no escaping the fact that Nissan’s premium arm Infiniti is still failing to fire, with its 441 sales only marginally ahead of luxury brands Bentley, Ferrari and Aston Martin. Still, at least Infiniti is growing (up 45.1 percent), if from a small base.
On the local front, Ford was the biggest loser in 2014, down 8.6 percent overall, but it’s the Blue Oval’s passenger sales (down 24.5 percent) that are most worrying. All of Ford’s passenger cars lost ground in 2014, spearheaded by the Falcon, which dropped 40.2 percent.
Nissan’s passenger range failed, too, finishing down 29.8 percent, while its range overall fell 14 percent.
It’s no surprise that, based purely on sales numbers, high-end boutique brands such as McLaren, Morgan and Rolls-Royce are among Australia’s least popular brands, but they’re hardly losers…
Australia's smallest movers:
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