The Australian new vehicle market took a small step backwards in September, with a 2.4 per cent dip in the overall market compared with the same month last year, but don’t be thinking our love affair with 4X4s is on the slide, it’s not.
In actual fact, the 4X4 light commercial vehicle sector posted an 11 per cent gain compared with the previous September and when combined with SUVs (the VFACTS sector in which the 4X4 wagons hide), they account for 58.6 per cent of total year to date sales compared with 56.3 per cent year to date in 2016.
The popularity of 4X4 vehicles continues to power the market along, with 19,738 of the 100,200 vehicles sold in September being 4X4s.*
4X4 Ute Sales – Year-To-Date
1 – Ford Ranger – 28,026
2 – Toyota HiLux – 26,039
3 – Mitsubishi Triton – 14,827
4 – Holden Colorado – 13,142
5 – Nissan Navara – 9,867
6 – Isuzu UTE D-MAX – 9,075
7 – Mazda BT-50 – 6,970
8 – Volkswagen Amarok – 6,557
9 – Toyota Landcruiser 70 Series – 6,380
10 – Foton Tunland – 320
It’s hard to miss the fact that September was a power month for the Ranger (3,769 sales), with the big Ford ute outselling the HiLux (2,907 sales) by a significant margin. Ford has clearly decided that 2017 is the Ranger’s year, and we reckon you could almost call it a done deal. Ranger has a commanding 2,000 sales lead over the HiLux with just three months worth of sales remaining.
Toyota has just released a very mildly updated MY18 HiLux range and we’re tipping that November and December will be the best months in the history of the HiLux, to grab a brand spanker at well below the RRP. And that’s advice you can take to the bank!
The other ute we’re going to start watching closely is the Amarok (910 sales), it outsold the Navara (888 sales), the Mazda BT-50 (856 sales) and notably, tied with Holden’s Colorado (910 sales). That’s a big jump up from the 529 Amaroks sold in July. Forget the little 2.0 diesel, that was never going to sell in big numbers in Australia – it’s the recently released Sportline V6 model with it’s $55,490 pricing (before on-roads) – that is firing up Amarok sales. You’d have to be dead not to cross-shop the V6 Rok against the more expensive and less impressive SR5 HiLux and Ranger Wildtrack.
Mitsubishi’s value packed Triton (1,532 sales) managed third place again, well ahead of Isuzu’s D-MAX (1,076 sales) and Holden’s Colorado (910 sales).
The Toyota Prado (1,070 sales) continues to dominate as does the Toyota LandCruiser wagon family (840 sales). Year-to-date they are number one and two respectively.
A significantly updated version of the Isuzu MU-X was released earlier this year, introducing a host of changes that included 6-speed gearboxes and improved levels of comfort, performance and efficiency and it’s struck a chord with buyers. The MU-X posted another good sales result in September with 712 sales*, it just wasn’t enough to keep a resurgent Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (735 sales), in its box.
Ford’s Everest (337 sales) couldn’t match it’s July result (456 sales), and we remain certain that any improvement in Everest sales is mostly due to the cheaper entry level pricing of the 2WD model. Unfortunately, VFACTS figures do not differentiate between 4WD and 2WD with the wagons and only one-eyed Ford fans are going to fork out the eye-watering prices being asked for the 4WD model.
Old man Pajero came out of nowhere (again) to post 372 sales, well up on the 252 recorded in July 2016. If you can live with its shortcomings, you can probably find a Mitsubishi dealer that will pay you to buy one. Ignore the RRP (Mitsubishi does) and play hard ball with the dealer.
Interestingly, the Land Rover Discovery only clocked up 145 sales, which hints at supply issues for the recently released all-new Disco. Another under-performer was the Toyota Fortuner (190 sales), however Toyota’s recent decision to knock $5,000+ off the recently upgraded MY18 Fortuner range, should see that change in the coming months.
* VFACTS data does not split SUV sales out into drive types as it does with the utes and that means that sales figures quoted for vehicles available with 4X2 and 4X4 drivetrains (MU-X and Everest for example), include a mix of 4X2 and 4X4 sales.
4X4 SALES SEPTEMBER 2017
|MAKE/MODEL||Jul-17||Jul-16||YTD | 17||YTD | 16|
|Ford Ranger 4X4||3,769||2,451||28,026||22,438|
|Mitsubishi Triton 4X4||1,532||2,012||14,827||14,066|
|Isuzu UTE D-MAX 4X4||1,076||944||9,075||8,064|
|Holden Colorado 4X4||910||1,528||13,142||12,885|
|Nissan Navara 4X4||888||969||9,867||10,673|
|Mazda BT-50 4X4||856||812||6,970||7,344|
|Toyota LandCruiser Wagon||840||903||9,575||8,795|
|Toyota LandCruiser PU/CC||773||637||6,380||5,385|
|Mitsubishi Pajero Sport||735||534||5,489||4,415|
|Isuzu UTE MU-X||712||592||5,829||5,139|
|Jeep Grand Cherokee||501||418||4,028||5,005|
|Land Rover Discovery Sport||321||387||3,547||3,314|
|Land Rover Range Rover Sport||230||253||2,268||2,364|
|Land Rover Discovery||145||129||985||2,142|
|Suzuki Grand Vitara||88||129||688||1,282|
|Mercedes-Benz G Class / G-Wagen||48||30||225||217|
|RAM Laramie 4X4||37||17||266||203|
|Land Rover Range Rover||29||30||334||355|
|Nissan Patrol Wagon||23||277||711||1,440|
|Great Wall Steed||17||0||150||0|
|Nissan Patrol Ute||1||33||101||207|
|Foton Tunland 4X4||0||54||320||551|
|Toyota FJ Cruiser||0||164||97||1,040|
|Land Rover Defender||0||4||3||407|
|Ssangyong Actyon Sports||0||1||1||25|