One of the most hotly-contested parts of the Australian new car market is the dual-cab ute battlefield.

The Toyota HiLux still reigns supreme followed by the Ford Ranger, proving not everything is different in what has been a topsy-turvy year.

In the mid-pack, the Mitsubishi Triton remains Australia’s third-favourite pickup. It received a significant update late in 2019, and still presents a stronger value proposition than the Ranger or HiLux.

Check out the full breakdown of ute sales in Australia below, across the 4×2 and 4×4 segments.

Australian ute market sales

The Australian car market is struggling. It was in decline before COVID-19, but lockdowns designed to prevent the spread of the virus have hit dealers and carmakers hard.

Overall, sales are down 20.2 per cent to date in 2020, while June sales dropped 6.4 per cent.

Although 4×2 ute sales have declined at a more rapid rate than the wider market, falling 27.5 per cent to date in 2020, the 4×4 market has stayed strong. Sales are down 13.8 per cent to date in 2020.

The 4×4 market has no doubt been helped by changes to the Instant Asset Write Off scheme, which had its limit raised to encourage spending.

Sales of 4×4 utes actually grew 10.6 per cent in June compared to June 2019.

SegmentVolume H1 2020Market share
4×2 utes13,2393.0 per cent
4×4 utes75,76917.1 per cent

4×2 ute sales

The Toyota HiLux remains the 4×2 fleet favourite, while the utilitarian Isuzu D-Max nabbed second spot as it approaches the end of its life.

The now-defunct Holden Colorado and Mercedes-Benz X-Class both played a small role, while the Ford Ranger trailed a number of the utes it dominates in the 4×4 segment.

ModelVolume H1 2020Market share
Toyota HiLux507238.3 per cent
Isuzu D-Max 201115.2 per cent
Mazda BT-50149011.3 per cent
Mitsubishi Triton137310.4 per cent
Ford Ranger10608.0 per cent
Nissan Navara9797.4 per cent
Holden Colorado6825.2 per cent
Great Wall Steed5444.1 per cent
Mercedes-Benz X-Class270.2 per cent
Volkswagen Amarok10.0 per cent

4×4 ute sales

The Ford Ranger is the king, but only by the slimmest of margins.

With the excellent Wildtrak and a raft of special edition models to choose from, buyers favoured the Ranger over the HiLux, but the gap between the two is tiny.

The Mitsubishi Triton follows in third, but has half the sales of the Ranger and HiLux.

As the for the Holden Colorado? Holden always argued it should have been a better seller, with plenty of tech and sharp prices.

Turns out it took a fire sale linked to the brand’s closure in Australia to achieve that.

ModelVolume H1 2020Market share
Ford Ranger 17,40623.0 per cent
Toyota HiLux17,27622.8 per cent
Mitsubishi Triton824410.9 per cent
Holden Colorado60308.0 per cent
Toyota LandCruiser 70 ute49286.5 per cent
Isuzu D-Max45956.1 per cent
Nissan Navara44985.9 per cent
Mazda BT-50 37414.9 per cent
Volkswagen Amarok35484.7 per cent
LDV T6018192.4 per cent
Ram 150017102.3 per cent
Mercedes-Benz X-Class10661.4 per cent
Ssangyong Musso3780.5 per cent
Great Wall Steed2800.4 per cent
Jeep Gladiator1610.2 per cent
Ram 2500/3500170.0 per cent

Combined ute sales

Thanks to strong demand for 4×2 models, the Toyota HiLux remains the best-selling vehicle in Australia, let alone the best-selling ute.

It’s followed by the Ford Ranger, with its strong 4×4 sales carrying the majority of the load.

The Mitsubishi Triton rounded out the podium, followed closely by the Holden Colorado. That won’t be the case in the second half of 2020.

The Isuzu D-Max finished in fifth place, as dealers clear current stock ahead of the new model’s arrival later this year.

ModelVolume H1 2020
Toyota HiLux22,348
Ford Ranger 18,472
Mitsubishi Triton9617
Holden Colorado 6712
Isuzu D-Max6606
Nissan Navara5477
Mazda BT-505231
Toyota LandCruiser 70 ute4928
Volkswagen Amarok3549
LDV T601819
Ram 15001710
Mercedes-Benz X-Class1093
Great Wall Steed824
Ssangyong Musso378
Jeep Gladiator161
Ram 2500/350017

What do we expect from the second half of 2020?

A flood of new utes are coming later this year.

We’ve already seen the new Mazda BT-50 and Isuzu D-Max, both of which arrive in the second half of 2020.

With an updated version of the four-cylinder engine from the current D-Max and a more upmarket interior, they’ll give the Ranger and HiLux more to think about.

An updated Toyota HiLux is also due in September, with more power, a more refined ride, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Expect sales of the Colorado and X-Class to peter out as stock dwindles, while there may be a small dip in BT-50 and D-Max sales during the model changeover.

Scott Collie

Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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