VFACTS: Massive November Keeps Car Sales on Road to Australian Record

A car sales record was broken for the sixth time in seven months in November, as a strong result leaves an annual record haul for 2023 well and truly within reach leading into the last month of the year.

In what has become a trend in recent times, high new car sales across November have seen the monthly record smashed, with the 112,141 sold surpassing the previous benchmark by over 10,000 units, according to new VFACTS data released by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI).

This figure represents an increase of 17.9% compared to the same period in 2022, mirroring the growth seen across October (22.3%), September (18.3%) and August (15.4%). Each of these, alongside July and May, also broke their monthly records.

All of this productivity from sellers (although numbers have been boosted by the fulfilment of previously delayed orders and easing of stock shortages) has meant that the all-time Australian annual sales record is only just under 71,000 units away.

With one month left, there have been 1,118,236 new cars sold across this year to date (YTD), which is an increase of 12.6% compared to numbers at the same stage last year. In comparison, the current record sits at 1,189,116 units, which was set back in 2017.

In terms of market segments, EVs made up 7.7% of the total cars sold across the month, led by the Tesla Model Y, and has seen its YTD sales rise significantly to 80,446, over 52,000 units and 184.0% more than at the same stage last year.

Monthly SUV sales surpassed 60,000 for the fourth time this year, with last month’s numbers sitting at 19.0% more than in 2022 and seeing it maintain its healthy market share of 55.6%.

Meanwhile, light commercial vehicle sales rose by almost 25% compared to last year, with 26,772 vehicles registered as sold, and passenger and heavy commercial vehicle numbers also rose by 10.7% and 0.2%, respectively.

Once again, all states and territories around Australia experienced significant growth, with South Australia being the biggest mover at 28.3%, followed by Western Australia (+20.8%) and Queensland (17.7%).

Market sales: November 2023

CategoryNovember sales% change vs 2022Market share %
Light commercial26,77224.823.9
Heavy commercial4,5520.24.1
Source: VFACTS, November 2023

Vehicle sales by state or territory: November 2023

State/territoryNovember sales% change vs 2022
New South Wales37,72817.5
Western Australia11,67920.8
South Australia7,28128.3
Australian Capital Territory1,62813.0
Northern Territory92113.0
Source: VFACTS, November 2023

Vehicle brands: November

It was another (unsurprising) display of dominance from Toyota, whose 21,002 new cars registered as sold represented a fourth consecutive month where its 2023 result exceeded the equivalent period in 2022, this time by 4.5%.

Among the chasing pack, Mazda led the way with 8,707 new vehicle registrations (+15.3%) ahead of third-placed Ford (8,165, +14.0%). Hyundai and Mitsubishi also held their places in the top five, with growth of 21.7% and 12.8%, respectively.

South Korean manufacturer Kia was unable to regain its spot after falling out of the top five in October, although its 5,767 (-5.8%) was enough to move into sixth position above MG (5,603, +1.9%), which slid to seventh.

Meanwhile, Isuzu Ute (4,853) and Nissan (4,268) saw their positive form continue last month, with significant growth of 73.4% and 148.9%, respectively, enough to sew up spots in the top ten for them.

Volkswagen pinched the final spot in the best-sellers’ list with 4,004 cars sold (+31.5%), leaving not enough room for Tesla (3,939, +79.4%) for the second successive month.

We’re now at the pointy end of the year where YTD sales really matter, and with a lead of more than 100,000, Toyota has top spot in the bag once again, albeit with sales down on last year by 8.8%.

Mazda has had second place wrapped up for some time now but remains a real chance to become the second manufacturer to crack 100,000 sales for the calendar year off the back of its 93,243 units so far (+6.9%).

Similarly, Ford is sitting comfortably and should easily round out the year in the top three, as its sales of 77,974 come at a highly impressive increase of 29.0% on 2022.

The most interesting battle to come in the final month is between Kia and Hyundai, with the latter (70,296, +2.0%) closing the gap on its younger sister company (70,537, -3.0%) over the past few months to sit at less than 250 leading into December.

Mitsubishi (58,377, -19.0%) and MG (54,512, +22.8%) are unlikely to move from their current positions, but Tesla (43,924, +153.5%), Subaru (42,491, +32.9%) and Isuzu Ute (41,354, +26.0%) are all close to one another between eighth and tenth.

Best-selling vehicle brands: November 2023

BrandNovember sales% change vs 2022
Isuzu Ute4,85373.4
Source: VFACTS, November 2023

Best-selling vehicle brands: YTD 2023

Brand2023 sales% change vs 2022
Isuzu Ute41,35426.0
Source: VFACTS, November 2023

Vehicle models: November

For the second straight month, the Ford Ranger has been the most popular new vehicle model among buyers in Australia, narrowly outselling the Toyota HiLux to ensure top spot remains well and truly up for grabs in the final month of the year.

The US manufacturer’s premier ute model sold 6,301 units across last month, which was an improvement of 24.2% compared to the same period in 2022, while the HiLux’s 5,901 new car registrations represented an increase of 8.5%.

This leaves things delicately poised in terms of YTD sales, with the HiLux currently holding onto top spot on 55,968 (-6.9%), a mere 379 cars ahead of the Ranger’s total of 55,589 (+29.8%).

The Isuzu Ute D-Max held its place in the top three after recording its highest-ever monthly finish in October, with its 3,692 registrations coming at a massive increase of 133.7% in contrast to the figures it recorded last year.

Tesla’s Model Y returned to the top ten last month after a lean spell, rebounding into fourth with 3,151 units (+74.6%) shifted across November.

It wasn’t just the HiLux that was feeling the love last month, though, with three other Toyota models featuring in the top ten: the Prado in fifth (3,090, +195.7%), RAV4 in sixth (2,449, +7.3%) and Corolla in tenth (1,976, -47.1%).

Between them, the Mitsubishi Outlander moved up to seventh (2,381, +27.0%) above the Mazda CX-5 (2,256, +15.8%) and the MG ZS (2,047, -32.9%), the latter of which suffered a drop-off after finishing fifth the month prior.

As mentioned, the fight for top honours will go right down to the wire this month, but that isn’t the only battle to keep an eye on. As it stands, positions three to six are all separated by less than 1,000 units, leaving the door ajar for any to claim a coveted top three or top five position.

The D-Max made massive strides this month to hold pole position, moving up to third overall with 28,369 cars sold (+24.6%) and leapfrogging the ZS (27,736, +42.9%) and RAV4 (27,435, -16.0%).

Waiting in the wings is the Model Y, which trimmed the gap on the top five to just 17 units and currently sits on 27,418 (+232.1%).

It’s also close between the Outlander and CX-5 in seventh and eighth (22,381 and 21,660, respectively) and two Hyundai models in the Tucson and i30 in ninth and tenth (19,834 and 19,579, respectively).

Best-selling vehicle models: November 2023

ModelNovember sales% change vs 2022
Ford Ranger6,30124.2
Toyota HiLux5,9018.5
Isuzu Ute D-Max3,692133.7
Tesla Model Y3,15174.6
Toyota Prado3,090195.7
Toyota RAV42,4497.3
Mitsubishi Outlander2,38127.0
Mazda CX-52,25615.8
MG ZS2,047-32.9
Toyota Corolla1,976-47.1
Source: VFACTS, November 2023

Best-selling vehicle models: YTD 2023

Brand2023 sales% change vs 2022
Toyota HiLux55,968-6.9
Ford Ranger55,58929.8
Isuzu Ute D-Max28,36924.6
MG ZS27,73642.9
Toyota RAV427,435-16.0
Tesla Model Y27,418232.1
Mitsubishi Outlander22,38127.9
Mazda CX-521,660-14.8
Hyundai Tucson19,83422.2
Hyundai i3019,579-2.2
Source: VFACTS, November 2023


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