Toyota HiLux Edges Out Ford Ranger In Sales Race
Toyota HiLux Edges Out Ford Ranger In Sales Race

Toyota HiLux Edges Out Ford Ranger In Sales Race

Toyota's HiLux ute has retained its Australian new-car sales crown, after the workhorse narrowly pipped its main rival – the Ford Ranger – by 85 units, and the Japanese brand continued its dominance with more than double the sales of its closest competitor.

With 4154 sales, the HiLux pipped the Ranger (4069) and other perennial sales contenders such as the Toyota Corolla (3160), Hyundai i30 (2683) and Mazda3 (2594), while Toyota bounced back after a sluggish start to the year.

Its 19,876 sales represented a 15.7 per cent increase over the same month last year, which marked its best May in five years and gave it more than double the sales numbers of its nearest rival, Mazda, which recorded 9903 sales, a 3.1 per cent increase year-on-year.

Arguably the most surprising performer, however, was the Ford Mustang.

Along with the HiLux and Corolla, other strong-selling Toyota models included the Australian-built Camry which climbed 54.4 per cent to 2233 units, and the RAV4 mid-size SUV which sold 1977 units, up 16.6 per cent.

Arguably the most surprising performer, however, was the Ford Mustang, with the American-built sportscar registering 1351 sales in May, a record for the model and more than double the number of the Blue Oval's next best-selling offering, the Escape mid-size SUV.

Despite being dealt a paltry two-star rating from the Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) in January, the Mustang – which ranges in price from $45,990 to $66,205 plus on-roads – was able to outsell other affordable, high-volume offerings such as the Honda Civic and Subaru Impreza.

Along with the Ranger, the Mustang helped Ford to 7617 sales for the month, a 15.7 per cent increase over last year and enough for fourth on the overall sales table.

Strong performers for the brand included the renamed Escape with 537 sales and the Everest which grew 50 per cent to 378 units, while the last remaining Aussie-built Falcons are making their way out of Ford showrooms, with 12 sales for the month.

In second place with 9903 sales, Mazda recorded its best-ever May figure, lead by the Mazda3 (2594), the new-generation CX-5 SUV (2117) and CX-3 small SUV which continued to lead its segment with 1451 sales.

The CX-9 large SUV increased sales over last May by over 1000 per cent, with 770 sales.

Trailing Mazda in third place was Hyundai, which dipped by 7.7 per cent on its way to 8312 sales. The perennially popular i30 in new-gen form slid 29 per cent to 2683 sales, however the South Korean manufacturer was bolstered by the performance of the Tucson which grew 30 percent to 2135.

With production of the Commodore winding down (1841 sales, -18.4 per cent), Holden saw a fall in sales by 6.6 per cent to 6917 units, with some of the heavy lifting done by the Astra hatch (828) and Colorado, which grew by 66.7 per cent for the 4x2 variants and 32.8 per cent for 4x4 versions.

Strong performances from its SUV stable saw Mitsubishi grow 6.0 per cent in May to 6521 units, after the ASX, Outlander, Pajero Sport and Triton 4x4 all sold well.

Good numbers from the X-Trail (1992) and Qashqai (1082) couldn't stop Nissan's slide following a recent model cull, falling 9.0 per cent to 5083 sales.

Hot on the heels of Nissan was Volkswagen, which, thanks to the Tiguan (960) and Golf (1534), grew 11.3 per cent to 5080 units.

Kia continued its sales momentum with 5005 units at a 41.3 per cent increase, with the Cerato, Carnival, Picanto, Rio, Sorento and Sportage all recording double digit growth, while the quirky Soul extended into three figures.

Overall, sales in May reached 102,901 units – a 6.4 per cent increase over May last year.

Rounding out the top 10 in sales was Subaru, which saw a 3.6 per cent lift thanks to big sales increases from the Impreza (+140.7 per cent) and WRX (+428.6 per cent).

Its 4146 sales were enough to keep Honda (3820) and Mercedes-Benz (3686) out of the top 10, while the other two premium German brands lost ground on Mercedes, with Audi falling 4.4 per cent and BMW dipping by 19 per cent.

Overall, sales in May reached 102,901 units – a 6.4 per cent increase over May last year – however the year-to-date figure of 465,381 remains 0.9 per cent down on the first five months of 2016.

All categories – encompassing passenger, SUV, light commercial and heavy commercial – grew in May, with SUVs up 9.4 per cent, making it more popular than the passenger category by 787 units.

The only SUV segment to recede was small SUVs, while the micro, large and upper large passenger cars all experienced double-digit percentage drops.

Can the Mustang sustain its hugely popular May sales figures? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

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