THE Ford Ranger has outsold the Toyota HiLux for the first time in Australia, leading the popular ute category for the month of August 2015.
While light commercial sales were down from July, Ford will be shouting from the rooftops after selling 2096 examples of the locally engineered Ranger, compared with the Hilux’s 1956 sales (4WD and 2WD combined).
Throw Australia’s appetite for utes into the mix of overall vehicle sales, and the Ford Ranger was the fourth best-selling vehicle overall, too.
“What’s important is that we’ve done this with a better mix of retail buyers,” a Ford spokesperson told Wheels. “As people choose trucks more for family use, we seem to be picking those buyers up.”
A strong performance from the new Mitsubishi Triton (1991 sales) pushed the Toyota back to third in the hotly-contested pick-up race, and sixth overall.
Yet there is a new Hilux arriving this October, and year-to-date, it still leads the Ranger’s 18,254 sales with 23,316.
Sales of new cars increased year-on-year in August 2015, driven by SUVs and private buyers, with 90,705 vehicles sold across Australia.
While the figure is down on July’s result of 92,308, it’s ahead of August 2014 when 88,155 vehicles were sold.
There’s no prize for guessing the best-selling vehicle. The Toyota Corolla was the clear favourite with 3050 sales for August, ahead of the Mazda 3 on 2673. The Holden Commodore filled the podium spot for passenger cars, with 2144 sales to push the Hyundai i30 – the top seller just two months ago – down into fourth place.
The rise of the SUV continues: a 19.4 percent increase on sales over August 2014 is testament to that. And while overall vehicle sales fell below the July result, SUV sales in August were up: 32,900 compared with 32,697. SUVs made up 36.3 percent of Australian car sales in August, a jump from 31.2 percent at the same time last year.
The most popular SUV was the Mazda CX-5 with 1980 sales, which made it the sixth passenger car overall. The Hyundai ix35 almost overtook the Mazda, with 1967 sales. Impressively, the ix35 has sold consistently well despite its age (the current generation has been on sale here since October 2010, and has just been replaced by the new Hyundai Tucson).
Toyota maintains its solid grip on overall market leadership, with 14,505 vehicle sales in August and 133,059 year-to-date. That’s light years ahead of next-best Hyundai, which sold 9505 for the month and is locked in a tussle with Mazda. Mazda sold 9166 cars in August but for the calendar year it is second only to Toyota with 75,113 sales.
Year to date, Hyundai (68,115 sales) has moved into third, with a margin of 613 cars on Holden ikn fourth. However this gap is expected to widen. Fifth was Mitsubishi, with Ford in sixth.
The Ranger was the only bright spot for Ford, making up 39.2 percent of its overall sales tally of 5354 vehicles. That left Ford with a market share of 5.1 percent for the month.