Toyota regains top spot in Australian New Car Sales for July 2023

july 2023 new vehicle sales – records set, but where to from here?

July new vehicle sales continued the healthy recovery from persistent supply chain issues, with a 15% year-on-year increase. The 96,859 vehicles sold sets an all-time record for the month, which is certainly welcomed after the obstacles that have faced the industry in recent times.

top takeaways

Toyota returns to form

Toyota regained lost ground in July, with 19,191 vehicles sold giving it just under 20% of the market, compared to second place Mazda with 8,307 sales. The Japanese giant can thank strong results from the RAV4, Corolla, and Prado for this, with the new entrant Corolla Cross also helping offset weaker Hilux sales (down 1,064 units vs. July 2022).

Toyota New Vehicle Sales in Australia July 2023 compared to 2022 - A return to top market share

SUVs drive growth

July 2023 has set new records, and much of that is down to Australia’s love for SUVs with this category making up more than half the vehicles sold. We are seeing some emerging trends within the category too though, with 85% of the growth this month coming in small to medium SUVs. This talks to the financial pressure facing purchasers, with small SUVs largely reflecting more affordable vehicles and reflecting a strong but price sensitive market. It’s evident that while Aussies continue to crave the SUV driving experience, some manufacturers are effectively delivering this at a compelling price point.

made in China trending up

Chinese-made vehicles are again above 15,000 units for the month, holding steady with the current trend (and well up on previous years). This is no doubt concerning to the traditional automotive manufacturing powerhouses in Japan, Thailand and particularly Korea (which has now been overtaken by China).

The impressive growth is being driven by vehicles from a range of Chinese and international OEMs, with MG (owned by SAIC) gaining increasing share, and Tesla’s Gigafactory in Shanghai a key source of vehicles for the Australian market. BYD and GWM are both also gaining share, while other Chinese manufacturers are considering market entry – this trend is likely to continue.

New Vehicle Sales Year on Year July sales by Country of Manufacture

what’s next

One positive month doesn’t make a summer. Toyota appears to have overcome some supply chain issues to regain lost ground, but can it maintain this going forward? Alongside this, what response will we see from the emerging brands haggling for market share. Tesla continues to make gains in Australia, but will these vehicles at more premium price points continue to thrive, or will price sensitive consumers feel the pinch and opt for cheaper alternatives such as MG and BYD?

Plenty to watch in coming months… don’t go away!

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