Light commercials lead the charge in new vehicle sales

The Australian sales of light commercial vehicles in September is up a whopping 27 per cent on the same month last year.

This is borne out by sales figures revealing that Ford’s Ranger and Toyota’s HiLux hold first and second place in overall new vehicle sales, with 4,192 and 3,635 units respectively in the month of September.

Toyota was overall market leader accounting for 24 per cent of sales, with its evergreen Corolla also receiving a podium finish with 3,487 units sold.

Mazda, Ford and Hyundai followed with respective shares of 8.0, 7.0 and 6.5 per cent.

Overall, Australians purchased 83,312 new cars in September this year, which is an increase of around 21 per cent on the same period last year.

These figures represent the burgeoning demand for new vehicles across sectors despite lockdowns and the continued impact of the global microprocessor shortages.

Likely reflecting it was the state most impacted by COVID-related lockdowns last year, Victoria recorded an increase of 96 per cent on vehicles sold during September 2020.

The Northern Territory, Queensland, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia all recorded positive growth greater than 16 per cent.

The ACT was down 35 per cent and New South Wales was down 8.0 per cent.

Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries Chief Executive Tony Weber said that the global microprocessor shortage, compounded by local COVID-19 restrictions, was continuing to impact across Australia.

“To see an increase of 21 per cent on 2020 figures is definitely encouraging news,” said Weber.

“However, for many manufacturers it is bittersweet with the knowledge of what could have been achieved in a normal trading environment.”

While acknowledging these are challenging times, Weber insisted automotive manufacturers are rising to meet them.

“Brands are working across their supply chains to deal with microprocessor issues and consumers are embracing online purchasing through click and collect delivery options,” he said.

In Weber’s view these figures gave the industry great encouragement and excitement for what will be possible in 2022 when lockdowns will hopefully be a thing of the past.

“The Sports Utility Market is up 25 per cent and the Light Commercial Market up 27 per cent. With over 150 models on offer in these segments, competition amongst brands is delivering the best technology and lowest prices for Australian families looking to break out of lockdown with a road trip,” he said.