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Toyota remains Australia’s best-selling car brand

Toyota has kept its status as the best-selling car in Australia in 2021 as the new car market returned to over one million annual sales despite its worst sales month in December in 13 years.

  • Utes and SUVs dominated the new car market
  • Toyota’s HiLux remains Australia’s best-selling car
  • Toyota market leader with 21.3 per cent market share
  • 2021 annual sales increased by 14.5 per cent compared to 2020

The HiLux topped the vehicle charts for a sixth consecutive year, according to the latest industry figures. Its rival, Ford’s Ranger was the most popular model for December. However, annually, the HiLux beat the Ranger with a record total of 52,801 models sold in 2021 compared to 50,279.

Australia’s new-car market saw 78,402 sales in December 2021. It’s a considerable decrease compared to December 2020 where 95.652 units were sold and is the lowest December figure since 2008 when 76,510 cars were sold.

December’s sales contributed to 2021’s new car sales of 1,049,831, which is a 14.5 per cent increase compared to 2020.

The new-car sector is still being affected by the pandemic and consequent semiconductor shortage.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) said that the results were encouraging despite several challenges in the market.

“Despite the pandemic restricting access to showrooms in 2021, Australian consumers found ways to purchase new vehicles and did so in solid numbers,” said FCAI chief executive Tony Weber.

“The global shortage of microprocessors, compounded by the pandemic, had an impact on the number of cars sold throughout Australia. Automotive manufacturers are continuing to work to strengthen supply chains in 2022.”

SUVs dominated the new car market for 2021 with a total of 531,700 units being sold, an increase of 16.9 per cent compared to 2020. Light commercial vehicles were up 23.2 per cent with a total of 253,254 vehicles sold.

There were 221,556 passenger cars sold throughout 2021, a surprising decrease of 0.2 per cent compared to the previous year.

Toyota was the highest-selling brand for the year with a total of 223,642 vehicles sold, which resulted in 21.3 per cent of the overall market share.

Mazda came in second with 101,119 vehicles sold and a 9.6 per cent market share.

The third was Hyundai with 72,872 cars sold and a 6.9 per cent market share.

Ford was fourth with 71,380 cars sold and 6.8 per cent market share while Kia came in fifth place with 67,964 vehicles sold and 6.5 per cent market share.

Electric vehicles saw an increase in sales of 191.1 per cent compared to 2020 figures.

“While this number may appear impressive, it is important to note that overall electric vehicle sales as reported through VFACTS account for just 0.49 per cent of the total market share,” Mr Weber said.

“In this context, we must recognise the policy objective should be to lower our CO2 emissions rather than meeting sales targets of particular types of technology. The FCAI maintains the need for national leadership in the form of a technology agnostic and achievable emissions reduction target.”

This is in line with the FCAI’s voluntary CO2 emissions standard for Australia’s new vehicle industry, which was released in 2021.

“Give us the target and we will give you the technology mix to get there,” Mr Weber added.

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