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VFACTS: April car sales extend downturn

Posted: 3 May 2019 12:00 pm
News

Traffic jam Image: Getty Images

Australian new car sales are down 8.9% on 2018.

The Australian new car market has continued its 2019 slump, with year-to-date sales down 8.1% on the same period last year, according to the latest VFACTS report released today.

75,550 vehicles were sold during April, bringing total sales in 2019 to 344,088. This is a drop of 7,380 sales from April 2018, or a decrease of 320.9 vehicle sales per day.

Tony Weber, CEO of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, says that the sales figures are to be expected given the wider economic atmosphere.

"This decrease is the result of a number of factors in the Australian market, including the downturn in the housing market, the tightening of lending practices, environmental factors such as drought and flood, and of course the imminent Federal Government election," he said.

"With all these elements currently present in the market, it is no surprise that Australian consumers are conservative in their approach to major purchases at the moment."

Toyota maintains dominance

Yet again, Toyota leads the pack in the local market, with 15,135 new vehicle sales for the month. This was enough for the Japanese automaker to secure 20% of total sales and almost double that of the nearest competitor, with Mazda second on 7,644 sales, followed by Hyundai, Ford and Mitsubishi.

The Toyota HiLux is still the best-selling vehicle in Australia, and even managed a 0.7% increase on April 2018 sales. But Toyota saw a big dip in the sales of its Corolla model, with April sales down a whopping 18.5% on 2018 levels.


BrandSales volumeMarket share
Toyota15,13520.0%
Mazda7,64410.1%
Hyundai6,4698.6%
Ford4,8036.4%
Mitsubishi4,7176.2%
Kia4,5216.0%
Volkswagen3,5054.6%
Holden3,4834.6%
Nissan3,0254.0%
Honda2,6303.5%

Class struggles

The sales downtrend had an impact on all vehicle classes, with all four down on 2018 figures. The hardest hit were passenger vehicles, which have dropped 13.5% compared to April last year. SUV sales were down 8.2%, but still accounted for 43.9% of all sales in the month.

Both light commercial and heavy commercial vehicles suffered drops, with April sales down 3% and 6.6% respectively on 2018.

Northern sales going south

The Northern Territory saw a staggering 24.2% drop in monthly sales compared to last year, with Victoria, NSW and the ACT also recording double-digit drops.

Tasmania was the only state or territory to record a sales increase, up 4.4% on April 2018.

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Picture: Getty Images

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