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VFACTS: Shortages dent January sales despite consumer demand

New car sales declined 4.8 per cent as supply chain and shipping snags continued to hamper deliveries, with subsequent upward price pressures apparent.

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Mike Costello
Mike Costello
News Editor
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Australian new vehicle sales dipped 4.8 per cent in January this year relative to the same month in 2021, as ongoing supply chain snags keep on keeping on.

The FCAI’s monthly VFACTS report of sales provided by the car brands and checked against registrations, tallied 75,863 units compared to 79,666 in January 2021.

The January 2022 haul was higher than 2020 (71,731) and 2011 (73,584) but lower than every other year within this window.

  • Top five were Toyota, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Kia and Hyundai
  • Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger topped charts as always
  • MG powered into seventh, ahead of Subaru
  • Mercedes-Benz dispatched luxury competitors in first month with set national pricing
  • Mazda CX-5 eclipses supply-constrained RAV4, takes SUV title
  • BEV sales even without Tesla spike by 109.5 per cent

“The microprocessor shortage and the pandemic’s impact on supply chains continues into 2022. This is an issue impacting markets all over the globe. Despite this, consumer interest, inquiry, and the fundamental demand for new cars in Australia remains strong,” according to FCAI chief executive Tony Weber.

“Manufacturers are continuing to work hard to address supply chain and production issues. We are also experiencing bottlenecks in having vehicles processed from some Australian ports. We will continue to work with all parties involved to resolve the issue.”

Sales were down for the month in all States and Territories aside from Tasmania (up 15.4 per cent).

Private, business fleet, and government department sales all dipped too, with only rental cars purchases bucking the trend.

Vehicles classified as SUVs achieved whopping 52.2 per cent market share, against 24.1 per cent for commercial utes and vans, and a meagre 20.7 per cent for conventional passenger cars: meaning sedans, hatchbacks, wagons, people movers, coupes and convertibles.

Brands

Market leader Toyota posted 15,333 sales, down 8.8 per cent, with supply restrictions on the LandCruiser (down 51.3 per cent) and RAV4 (down 53.5 per cent) in particular biting hard.

Mazda finished second with 9805 sales, up 15.5 per cent thanks in large part to a huge month for the CX-5 SUV – presumably a beneficiary of ongoing RAV4 shortages.

Mitsubishi got off to a good start with 6533 sales, up 26.1 per cent, pushing it onto the podium, with an influx of Triton stock driving this rebound – the 4×4 Triton even outsold the 4×4 Toyota HiLux.

Kia took bragging rights over its big brother Hyundai managing 5520 sales (up 0.4 per cent), compared to 5128 sales (down 13.8 per cent), though once again both brands were bogged down by lengthy wait lists on key vehicles.

Ford ended January in sixth on 4528, down 11.2 per cent, ahead of MG which continues to power up the charts. The Chinese brand grew 46.9 per cent and finished seventh overall, leading in the Small SUV and Light Car segments.

Rounding out the top 10 were Subaru (2722, down 15.5 per cent), Isuzu Ute (2715, up 14.9 per cent), and Nissan (2334, down 37.9 per cent).

Smaller-volume brands that outperformed the market included Great Wall Motor (GWM Haval), fellow Chinese brand LDV, Renault, SsangYong, Ram Trucks, Peugeot, GM Specialty Vehicles (Chevrolet), and Genesis.

The biggest monthly losers included Volkswagen (down 43.9 per cent), Honda (down 48.8 per cent), Audi (down 46 per cent), Lexus (down 29.1 per cent), Land Rover (down 36.8 per cent), Skoda (down 63.4 per cent), Porsche (down 31.6 per cent), and Mini (down 39.4 per cent).

January 2022 sales by brand

BrandSalesChange over Jan 21
Toyota15,333-8.8%
Mazda980515.2%
Mitsubishi653326.1%
Kia55200.4%
Hyundai5128-13.8%
Ford4528-11.2%
MG353846.9%
Subaru2722-15.5%
Isuzu Ute271514.9%
Nissan2334-37.9%
Mercedes-Benz2556-4.5%
BMW1565-8.0%
Volkswagen1527-43.9%
Suzuki1413-12.4%
Honda1173-48.8%
GWM Haval116351.2%
LDV105236.6%
Audi786-46.0%
Volvo Car726-9.6%
Renault645150.0%
Lexus528-29.1%
Jeep446-11.7%
Land Rover339-36.8%
Skoda330-63.4%
Porsche275-31.6%
SsangYong25344.6%
Ram19664.7%
Peugeot18472.0%
Mini146-39.4%
Chevrolet GMSV12087.5%
Genesis80433.3%
Fiat1200.8%
Alfa Romeo4518.4%
Maserati4422.2%
Jaguar33-37.7%
Citroen2970.6%
Ferrari2025.0%
Chrysler13-55.2%
Lotus12
Aston Martin7-53.3%
Bentley5-70.6%
McLaren4-20.0%
Alpine10.0%
Lamborghini1-91.7%

Models

As has become the norm, the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger topped the charts.

The Mazda CX-5 had its best relative month in ages, finishing third overall and returning to the number-one SUV slot on the back of the RAV4’s supply-related decline.

Shipments of Mitsubishi Triton to deliver on orders drove the ute into fourth, ahead of the Toyota Prado. Rounding out the top 10 were the Isuzu D-Max, Hyundai i30, MG ZS, MG 3, and Subaru Forester.

If you told someone a few years ago that two MG models would outsell the Corolla and Mazda 3, you would have been laughed out of the room.

The top 20 sellers list included seven SUVs, six utes, six passenger sedans/hatches, and one van/light bus.

ModelSalesChange over Jan 21
Toyota HiLux3591-8.2%
Ford Ranger32454.0%
Mazda CX-5321354.4%
Mitsubishi Triton287650.7%
Toyota Prado256688.8%
Isuzu D-Max18954.0%
Hyundai i301642-15.9%
MG ZS158826.7%
MG 3155180.6%
Subaru Forester148020.2%
Toyota Corolla1442-30.1%
Toyota RAV41425-53.5%
Mazda CX-30138853.0%
Mitsubishi Outlander135238.1%
Mazda 31273-15.2%
Toyota Camry123351.3%
Mazda BT-50122216.7%
Kia Cerato1208-21.8%
Nissan Navara117928.2%
Toyota Hiace113027.8%

Segments

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

  • Micro Cars: Kia Picanto (572), Mitsubishi Mirage (259), Fiat 500 (54)
  • Light Cars under $25,000: MG 3 (1551), Mazda 2 (554), Kia Rio (450)
  • Light Cars over $25,000: Mini Hatch (85), Audi A1 (15), Citroen C3 (7)
  • Small Cars under $40,000: Hyundai i30 (1642), Toyota Corolla (1442), Mazda 3 (1273)
  • Small Cars over $40,000: Mercedes-Benz A-Class (252), BMW 1 Series (91), BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (87)
  • Medium Cars under $60,000: Toyota Camry (1233), Mazda 6 (111), Hyundai Sonata (105)
  • Medium Cars over $60,000: Mercedes-Benz CLA (170), BMW 3 Series (162), Mercedes-Benz C-Class (119)
  • Large Cars under $70,000: Kia Stinger (77), Skoda Superb (49)
  • Large Cars over $70,000: Porsche Taycan (37), Mercedes-Benz E-Class (25), BMW 5 Series (22)
  • Upper Large Cars: Mercedes-Benz S-Class (32), Chrysler 300 (13), BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe (6)
  • People Movers: Kia Carnival (495), Honda Odyssey (129), Hyundai Staria (120)
  • Sports Cars under $80,000: Ford Mustang (105), Subaru BRZ (97), BMW 2 Series (59)
  • Sports Cars over $80,000: Mercedes-Benz C-Class (80), BMW 4 Series (53), Mercedes-Benz E-Class (31)
  • Sports Cars over $200,000: Ferrari range (20), Porsche 911 (19), Aston Martin/Bentley/McLaren two-door ranges (4)
  • Light SUVs: Mazda CX-3 (905), Toyota Yaris Cross (841), Hyundai Venue (598)
  • Small SUVs under $40,000: MG ZS (1588), Mazda CX-30 (1388), Mitsubishi ASX (1022)
  • Small SUVs over $40,000: Mercedes-Benz GLA (352), Volvo XC40 (324), Audi Q3 (121)
  • Medium SUVs under $60,000: Mazda CX-5 (3213), Subaru Forester (1480), Toyota RAV4 (1425)
  • Medium SUVs over $60,000: Audi Q5 (456), Mercedes-Benz GLC (436), BMW X3 (412)
  • Large SUVs under $70,000: Toyota Prado (2566), Isuzu MU-X (820), Ford Everest (730)
  • Large SUVs over $70,000: Mercedes-Benz GLE (212), BMW X5 (202), Land Rover Defender (146)
  • Upper Large SUVs under $100,000: Toyota LandCruiser Wagon (730), Nissan Patrol (115)
  • Upper Large SUVs over $100,000: BMW X7 (87), Mercedes-Benz GLS (73), Land Rover Discovery (21)
  • Light Vans: Renault Kangoo (39), Volkswagen Caddy (24), Peugeot Partner (9)
  • Medium Vans: Toyota HiAce (853), LDV G10 (296), Hyundai Staria Load (179)
  • Large Vans: LDV Deliver 9 (117), Mercedes-Benz Sprinter (110), Fiat Ducato (66)
  • Light Buses: Toyota HiAce (277), Toyota Coaster (14), LDV Deliver 9 (12)
  • 4×2 Utes: Toyota HiLux (1022), Isuzu D-Max (441), Mitsubishi Triton (272)
  • 4×4 Utes: Ford Ranger (2986), Mitsubishi Triton (2604), Toyota HiLux (2569)

Miscellaneous

Sales by region

  • NSW: 23,035, down 9.8 per cent
  • Victoria: 20,397, down 1.6 per cent
  • Queensland: 16,423, down 1.3 per cent
  • WA: 7578, down 7.8 per cent
  • SA: 5170, down 2.2 per cent
  • Tasmania: 1468, up 15.4 per cent
  • ACT: 1175, down 9.7 per cent
  • NT: 617, down 13.0 per cent

Category breakdown

  • SUV: 39,597 sales, 52.2 per cent market share
  • Light commercials: 18,259 sales, 24.1 per cent market share
  • Passenger cars: 15,737 sales, 20.7 per cent market share
  • Heavy commercials: 2270 sales, 3.0 per cent market share

Top segments by market share

  • Medium SUV: 19.6 per cent
  • 4×4 Utes: 18.0 per cent
  • Small SUV: 14.3 per cent
  • Large SUV: 11.7 per cent
  • Small Car: 8.7 per cent

Sales by buyer type

  • Private buyers: 42,554, down 2.0 per cent
  • Business fleets: 25,463, down 12.0 per cent
  • Rental fleets: 3492, up 11.9 per cent
  • Government fleets: 2094, down 2.4 per cent

Sales by propulsion or fuel type

  • Petrol: 41,592, down 12.8 per cent
  • Diesel: 26,099, up 4.8 per cent
  • Hybrid: 4972, up 8.9 per cent
  • EV minus Tesla*: 620, up 109.5 per cent
  • PHEV: 307, up 94.3 per cent
  • Hydrogen FCEV: 3, zero the previous January

Sales by country of origin

  • Japan: 27,528 units, down 6.0 per cent
  • Thailand: 17,907 units, up 5.9 per cent
  • Korea: 11,162 units, down 3.1 per cent
  • China: 6264 units, up 49.2 per cent
  • Germany: 2393, down 22.3 per cent

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 News Editor at CarExpert.
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