Australia’s new car sales market took a small downward turn in February – down 3.8 percent year-to-date, to be precise.
But those who were out braving the heat and shopping for a new car had 4X4s firmly in their sights.
The segment is bundled in together with SUVs, and for the first time in history, SUVs outsold conventional passenger cars in Australia.
Overall, the best-seller for SUVs and pickups was Toyota’s evergreen HiLux, but the Ford Ranger took the gold when 4X4 sales are considered alone. Ranger 4X4 with 2497 sales was 117 units ahead of HiLux for February, while Mitsubishi’s Triton 4X4 finished third on 1751 units.
Toyota Prado was fourth for 4X4 sales on 1320, making Prado the best-selling Large SUV in Australia for February.
Elsewhere in the Large SUV segment under $70,000, the three-way battle for top-selling pickup-based 4X4 wagon that began when Ford’s Everest, Toyota’s Fortuner and Mitsubishi’s Pajero Sport arrived in Australia at roughly the same time is fast becoming a one-horse race.
Sales were close between the trio for much of last year, but Mitsubishi’s introduction of a seven-seat update for the Pajero Sport which included rear-seat air conditioning vents was the trigger buyers were looking for to favour the Pajero Sport – which is also cheapest of the three.
Toyota is probably looking for better results from its Fortuner (main image), with the wagon’s 170 sales in February seeing it slip behind Pajero Sport, Everest, the Holden Trailblazer, Isuzu’s MU-X, the Mitsubishi Pajero and the Jeep Grand Cherokee in its class.
However, the Japanese carmaker won’t mind if potential Fortuner customers are selecting the more expensive Prado instead, and the Kluger also competes for the attention of Toyota customers in the Large SUV segment.
The Upper Large SUV segment under $100,000 only has two contenders in Australia, and Toyota’s LandCruiser Wagon (91 percent of sales) was the clear favourite over Nissan’s Patrol (nine percent of sales). It’s a similar situation when the pickup siblings for each model are considered, with the LandCruiser ute chalking up 548 sales last month against 21 for the Patrol pickup (Nissan is no longer importing the Y61 Patrol and is in the process of selling down remaining dealer stock).
Other strong performers in the 4X4 market for February included the Holden Colorado (1098 sales), Nissan’s Navara (931), the Volkswagen Amarok (756) and the Mazda BT-50 (747).
In all, 17,709 new 4X4s were sold in February, down from 19,162 in the same month last year.
4X4 SALES FEBRUARY 2017
MAKE/MODEL FEB 2017 FEB 2016 YTD | 17 YTD | 16 Ford Ranger 4X4
Mitsubishi Triton 4X4
Holden Colorado 4X4
Toyota LandCruiser Wagon
Nissan Navara 4X4
Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
Mazda BT-50 4X4
Isuzu UTE D-MAX 4X4
Toyota LandCruiser 70 Series
Isuzu UTE MU-X
Land Rover Discovery Sport
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Land Rover Range Rover Sport
Nissan Patrol Wagon
Land Rover Discovery
Foton Tunland 4X4
Land Rover Range Rover
Suzuki Grand Vitara
Toyota FJ Cruiser
Nissan Patrol Ute
RAM Laramie 4X4
Great Wall Steed
Mercedes-Benz G Class
Land Rover Defender
Holden Colorado 7
Ssangyong Actyon Sports