Australian new-car sales have accelerated beyond pre-Covid levels.
More than 110,000 new cars were sold in June, more than any month this year.
Tony Weber, head of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, said the sales result showed growing strength and confidence in the local economy.
“Expectations for a strong result in June had remained high given the traditional end of financial year demand from business and private buyers driven by Government incentives such as the extension of the depreciation allowance announced in the Federal budget coupled with intensive marketing activity from vehicle brands,” Mr Weber said.
“In spite of some States being forced into COVID-19 lockdowns towards the end of June, the acquisition of a new vehicle remains a popular option for buyers across all market segments,” he said.
The result is even more impressive considering nearly every car maker has faced supply issues caused by a shortage of semiconductors, a vital component in many vehicles.
This issue has created waiting lists for some new cars stretching back several months.
Utes again dominated the sales charts; the Ford Ranger (6058 sales), Toyota HiLux (5412) and Isuzu D-Max (3167) were the top-selling vehicles in the country, while the Mitsubishi Triton (2240) was ninth.
Four-wheel drives also proved popular. The Toyota Prado (2610) and LandCruiser (2140) continue to appeal to Australians looking to explore Australia with caravans in lieu of the closure of international borders.
The rest of the top 10 was made up by the usual suspects – the Mazda CX-5 (3018) and Toyota RAV4 (2501) were the most popular SUVs in the country and the Kia Cerato (2711), Hyundai i30 (2331) and Toyota Corolla (2175) were the top passenger cars.
Nearly every car brand is in the black this year after the severe lockdowns of 2020.
Chinese maker MG is one of the standouts – sales are up almost 250 per cent through the first half of this year.
The MG ZS small SUV now outsells long term favourites such as the Mitsubishi ASX.
Skoda is on a tear this year with sales up more than 100 per cent led by its three SUVs; the seven-seat Kodiaq, mid-size Karoq and the 2020 News Corp Car of the Year winner, the Kamiq.
Kia is pushing to become the third most popular brand in the country. After leapfrogging Ford and Mitsubishi and is hot on the heels of sister brand Hyundai.
Leading the Kia assault is the new Cerato small car and the Seltos small SUV, along with strong sales of the seven-seat Sorento SUV.
All the big luxury brands are enjoying a good year, but Volvo is the pick of the litter with its sales up more than 60 per cent through the first half of this year.
Honda is the biggest name struggling in 2021. The Japanese brand has shed more than a quarter of sales in 2021 compared to the lockdown affected 2020.
The car maker switched to an agency sales model from July 1, where vehicle prices are fixed and head office owns all the stock, leaving dealers to deliver and service vehicles.
Jaguar is struggling. Its sales are down by about a fifth this year.
Citroen and Fiat continued their struggles, selling just 22 and 63 vehicles in the past month respectively.
TOP 10 BEST SELLING VEHICLES IN JUNE
Ford Ranger – 6058
Toyota HiLux – 5412
Isuzu D-Max – 3167
Mazda CX-5 – 3018
Kia Cerato – 2711
Toyota Prado – 2610
Toyota RAV4 – 2501
Hyundai i30 – 2331
Mitsubishi Triton – 2240
Toyota Corolla – 2175
TOP 10 BEST SELLING BRANDS IN JUNE
Toyota – 21,076
Mazda – 12,225
Ford – 8456
Kia – 7890
Hyundai – 7357
Mitsubishi – 5641
Volkswagen – 4674
MG – 4303
Nissan – 4036
Isuzu – 3167