For just the third time in Australia’s history we bought over 1.1 million new vehicles in a calendar year. Despite this, all statesâ€”expect New South Walesâ€”sold fewer vehicles compared with 2013 and total sales across the country dropped 2.0% to 1,111,224; down from last year’s record high sales mark of 1,136,227.
The irrepressible march of the SUV continues with almost half of all sales now being represented by the SUV/light commercial sector (550,303 sales). Deliveries of new passenger cars dropped to 531,596; down 34,808 sales compared with 2013. Heavy commercial vehicles remained consistent at 31,325 sales; a slight drop of 371 sales compared with the previous year.
Two small passenger cars did fight it out for the best selling model of the year, with the Toyota Corolla (43,735) hanging on to its number one status from 2013, narrowly edging out the Mazda3 (43,313).
Light commercials include models such as the Toyota HiLux (38,126), Ford Ranger (26,619) and the Mitsubishi Triton (24,256). All three were in the top 10 selling models of 2014. The best selling SUV was the Mazda CX-5 (21,571).
Reinforcing the demand for SUVs were models just outside the top 10, including the Toyota RAV4 (18,160 sales, +6.9%), the Jeep Grand Cherokee (16,582, +28.2%) and the Toyota Prado (16,112, +10.6%).
Meanwhile the Holden Cruze (18,554, -24.0%) and Nissan Navara (16,080, -33.3%) could not repeat their strong performances of 2013, dropping out of the top 10 in 2014. They were replaced by the Mazda CX-5 (+7.2%) and the Volkswagen Golf (19,178, +10.6%).
When looking at the top 10 selling brands for the year almost all registered a decline in sales compared with 2013; only Hyundai (+3.2%) and Subaru (+0.8%) managed minor increases.
Toyota (203,501, -5.2%) easily retained its best selling position in 2014, ahead of Holden (106,092, -5.3%) and Mazda (103,144, -2.4%).
Marques outside the top 10 performing well against their 2013 sales include Isuzu Ute (16,674, +63.3%), Fiat (5,758, +49.4%), Renault (10,014 +42.7%), and They-bought-a-Jeep (30,408 +37.2%).
German prestige brands also had a good time of it last year, increasing sales across the board. Porsche (2,812 +47.6%) saw the largest increase in percentage terms, followed by Audi (19,227, +20.1%), Mercedes (31,895, +15.8%) and BMW (22,722, +10.7%).
Business sales dropped 6.6% in 2014, while government (+3.4%) and rental (+2.3%) purchases increased. Private sales remained largely stagnant, registering a small increase of 0.5%.