VFACTS: Australia's car sales for August 2021 detailed

New car sales are up 33 per cent despite COVID and semiconductors, as Kia leaps onto the podium, and Chinese brands continue to storm up the charts

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Mike Costello
Mike Costello
Comparisons Editor
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New car sales grew 33.1 per cent during August despite the two most populous states – New South Wales and Victoria – being stuck in lockdowns, and semiconductor-related supply shortages lingering like a bad smell.

Industry data VFACTS shows that 81,199 new cars were counted as sold in August compared to 60,986 in a disastrous August 2020. The year-to-date (YTD) tally sits at 732,828 sales, which is actually the highest tally at this point since 2018.

Brands

Toyota’s sales spiked more than 60 per cent as big gains from the Corolla (+2099 sales), HiLux 4×4 (+2388) and Prado (+2237) more than offset a supply-led decrease in RAV4 sales (-1656).

Mazda sat comfortably in second with 7645 sales, up 10.5 per cent.

Rounding out the podium was Kia on 5065 (up 12 per cent), with the brand narrowly eclipsing Ford (5058, up 29.8 per cent), its majority owner Hyundai (5016, up 10.9 per cent), and Mitsubishi (4802, up 11.5 per cent).

Year-to-date, Kia (48,161) is nipping at the heels of its big brother Hyundai (48,712).

Completing the top 10 brands list were Volkswagen (3793, up 36.2 per cent), Subaru (3232, up 57.5 per cent), Isuzu Ute (3099, up 290.3 per cent despite substantial supply problems), and MG (3011, up 147.4 per cent).

Other manufacturers that grew their sales more than the market average of 27.4 per cent included Chinese brands GWM Haval (1824, up a whopping 405.3 per cent) and LDV (1141, up 74.5 per cent). Fewer supply issues played a role for the former in particular…

Other brands that experienced strong growth included Skoda (up 33.7 per cent), Lexus (up 67.3 per cent), Land Rover (up 118.1 per cent), Ram (up 44.5 per cent), SsangYong (up 111.3 per cent), Mini (up 48.0 per cent), Peugeot (up 34.7 per cent), Jaguar (up 136.7 per cent), and Genesis (up 257.1 per cent).

The battle between the major luxury brands went: Mercedes-Benz (excluding vans) 1905, BMW on 1578, and Audi with 1143.

Manufacturers that witnessed sales declines included Mercedes-Benz (down 6.9 per cent), Nissan (down 9.2 per cent), Suzuki (down 9.0 per cent), Honda (down 36.0 per cent in the second month under its new fixed-price agency model), Volvo Car (down 3.3 per cent), and Alfa Romeo (down 28.9 per cent).

BrandSalesChange
Toyota19,959Up 60.3%
Mazda7645Up 10.5%
Kia5065Up 12.0%
Ford5058Up 29.8%
Hyundai5016Up 10.9%
Mitsubishi4802Up 11.5%
Volkswagen3793Up 36.2%
Subaru3232Up 57.5%
Isuzu Ute3099Up 290.3%
MG3011Up 147.4%
Mercedes-Benz2364Down 6.9%
Nissan2162Down 9.2%
GWM/Haval1824Up 405.3%
BMW1578Up 11.6%
Audi1143Up 13.4%
LDV1141Up 74.5%
Suzuki1045Down 9.0%
Honda941Down 36.0%
Skoda674Up 33.7%
Lexus599Up 67.3%
Jeep581Up 22.1%
Volvo Car549Down 3.3%
Land Rover541Up 118.1%
Renault518Up 2.8%
Ram Trucks354Up 44.5%
SsangYong262Up 111.3%
Mini259Up 48.0%
Porsche211Up 21.3%
Chevrolet GMSV198N/A
Peugeot198Up 34.7%
Jaguar142Up 136.7%
Fiat122Up 5.2%
Alfa Romeo54Down 28.9%
Genesis50Up 257.1%
Maserati32Up 6.7%
Bentley26Up 225.0%
Chrysler26Up 30.0%
Ferrari15Up 36.4%
Lotus12Up 500.0%
Aston Martin11Up 10.0%
McLaren9Up 28.6%
Lamborghini7No change
Rolls-Royce6Up 100.0%
Citroen5Down 16.7%
Alpine1N/A

Models

The top 20 selling vehicles list comprised five utes or cab chassis vehicles, six passenger cars, and nine broadly classified SUVs. Reflecting its dominance, Toyota made six of the top 20 and four of the top five.

ModelSalesChange
Toyota HiLux4470Up 267.3%
Ford Ranger3959Up 34.9%
Toyota Corolla3563Up 143.4%
Toyota RAV43169Down 34.3%
Toyota Prado2731Up 452.8%
Mazda CX-52239Up 18.8%
Hyundai i302047Up 43.2%
Isuzu D-Max1941Up 885.3%
MG ZS1700Up 436.3%
Mitsubishi Outlander1638Up 85.1%
Toyota Camry 1422Up 56.3%
Mazda BT-50 1325Up 107.7%
Kia Cerato1205Down 4.7%
Hyundai Tucson1169Up 29.5%
Isuzu MU-X1158Up 94.0%
Mazda CX-301141Up 51.5%
Subaru Forester1104Up 55.1%
Toyota L’Cruiser 701107Up 49.6%
Mazda 31075Up 9.2%
MG 31035Up 58.3%

Segments

We can also identify the most popular models in each vehicle segment.

  • Micro Cars: Kia Picanto (411), Fiat 500 (50), Mitsubishi Mirage (34)
  • Light Cars under $25,000: MG 3 (1035), Kia Rio (647), Volkswagen Polo (390)
  • Light Cars over $25,000: Mini Hatch (133), Audi A1 (54), Citroen C3 (2)
  • Small Cars under $40,000: Toyota Corolla (3563), Hyundai i30 (2047), Kia Cerato (1205)
  • Small Cars over $40,000: Mercedes-Benz A-Class (257), BMW 1 Series (177), BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (128)
  • Medium Cars under $60,000: Toyota Camry (1422), Mazda 6 (113), Volkswagen Passat (107)
  • Medium Cars over $60,000: BMW 3 Series (252), Mercedes-Benz CLA (130), Lexus IS (90)
  • Large Cars under $70,000: Kia Stinger (121), Skoda Superb (34)
  • Large Cars over $70,000: Mercedes-Benz E-Class (62), BMW 5 Series (43), Audi A6 (17)
  • Upper Large Cars: Chrysler 300 (26), Mercedes-Benz S-Class (13), BMW 6 Series GT (8)
  • People Movers: Kia Carnival (395), Hyundai Staria (101), LDV G10 (61)
  • Sports Cars under $80,000: BMW 2 Series (58), Nissan 370Z (49), Ford Mustang (45)
  • Sports Cars over $80,000: BMW 4 Series (72), Mercedes-Benz C-Class (57), Mercedes-Benz E-Class (16)
  • Sports Cars over $200,000: Porsche 911 (23), Ferrari range (15), Bentley Continental (15)
  • Light SUVs: Toyota Yaris Cross (720), Kia Stonic (546), Mazda CX-3 (534)
  • Small SUVs under $40,000: MG ZS (1700), Mazda CX-30 (1141), Mitsubishi ASX (976)
  • Small SUVs over $40,000: Audi Q3 (404), Audi Q2 (174), Volvo XC40 (161)
  • Medium SUVs under $60,000: Toyota RAV4 (3169), Mazda CX-5 (2239), Mitsubishi Outlander (1638)
  • Medium SUVs over $60,000: Mercedes-Benz GLB (309), BMW X3 (306), Volvo XC60 (295)
  • Large SUVs under $70,000: Toyota Prado (2731), Isuzu MU-X (1158), Toyota Kluger (984)
  • Large SUVs over $70,000: Mercedes-Benz GLE (292), BMW X5 (180), Lexus RX (138)
  • Upper Large SUVs under $100,000: Nissan Patrol (506), Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series (311)
  • Upper Large SUVs over $100,000: Mercedes-Benz GLS (104), Land Rover Discovery (87), Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen (45)
  • Light Vans: Volkswagen Caddy (106), Renault Kangoo (46), Peugeot Partner (20)
  • Medium Vans: Toyota HiAce (364), LDV G10/G10+ (161), Mitsubishi Express (151)
  • Large Vans: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter (357), LDV Deliver 9 (143), Renault Master (125)
  • Light Buses: Toyota HiAce (172), Toyota Coaster (23), Ford Transit (16)
  • 4×2 Utes: Toyota HiLux (1146), Isuzu D-Max (754), Ford Ranger (350)
  • 4×4 Utes: Ford Ranger (3609), Toyota HiLux (3324), Isuzu D-Max (1187)

Miscellaneous

Sales by region

  • NSW: 21,794, down 7.0 per cent
  • Victoria: 21,167, up 153.6 per cent
  • Queensland: 19,139, up 32.2 per cent
  • WA: 9398, up 32.3 per cent
  • SA: 6317, up 37.4 per cent
  • Tasmania: 1660, up 46.9 per cent
  • ACT: 941, down 28.3 peer cent
  • NT: 783, up 33.6 per cent

Category breakdown

  • SUV: 40,981 sales, 50.5 per cent market share
  • Light commercials: 19,236 sales, 23.7 per cent market share
  • Passenger cars: 17,339 sales, 21.4 per cent market share
  • Heavy commercials: 3643 sales, 4.5 per cent market share

Top segments by market share

  • Medium SUV: 18.0 per cent
  • 4×4 Utes: 18.0 per cent
  • Large SUV: 14.4 per cent
  • Small SUV: 12.7 per cent
  • Small Car: 11.7 per cent

Sales by buyer type

  • Private buyers: 42,013, up 34.7 per cent
  • Business fleets: 28,452, up 19.1 per cent
  • Rental fleets: 4542, up 267.8 per cent
  • Government fleets: 2549, up 24.7 per cent

Sales by propulsion or fuel type

  • Petrol: 43,176, up 23.1 per cent
  • Diesel: 27,228, up 63.9 per cent
  • Hybrid: 6488, up 0.9 per cent
  • EV minus Tesla*: 370, up 138.7 per cent
  • PHEV: 293, up 184.5 per cent
  • FCEV: 1

* Tesla refuses to supply sales information

Sales by country of origin

  • Japan: 28,625 units, up 29.0 per cent
  • Thailand: 17,558 units, up 51.0 per cent
  • Korea: 10,321 units, up 14.4 per cent
  • China: 6300 units, up 176.7 per cent
  • Germany: 3407, down 9.9 per cent

Quotes

“The bounce of 33 per cent on last year’s figure demonstrates the resolve of car manufacturers to engage with customers and drive-up new vehicle ownership,” said Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries chief executive Tony Weber.

“With access to showrooms limited, vehicle makers are working to engage customers in their homes and other places of isolation.

“We know that the car industry is suffering the global impacts of Covid-19 on supply chains. An increase of 635 per cent on the sale of electric-powered SUVs shows just how diligently manufacturers are working with suppliers to deliver vehicles to market.”

Previous monthly reports

Got any questions about car sales? Ask away in the comments and I’ll jump in!

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Mike Costello
Mike Costello
Mike Costello is the Comparisons Editor at CarExpert.
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