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RAV4 Hybrid rises to challenge Ranger’s supremacy

The Australian appetite for new cars shows no sign of abating from the latest new vehicle figures, however EV sales have slowed slightly.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries’ (FCAI) April figures for new vehicles have set a highest-ever year-to-date sales result selling more than 50,00 new vehicles more than at the same point in 2023.

The FCAI count show a total of 97,202 vehicles were sold in April, propelling the year-to-date sales to 401,654.

Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid vehicles made up 18.3 per cent of the market compared to 7.5 per cent in 2023 but full EVs dropped slightly to 6.4 per cent from 7.9 per cent at the same time last year.

In another upset, Toyota’s RAV4 has knocked off the two large utes, Ford Ranger and Toyota HiLux for the top spot for new cars sold, after the pair dominated the top two spots throughout 2023.

The RAV4 cracked 5,000 sales for the first time in March and of these, 93.3 per cent or 4,728 cars were Hybrid Electric – according to Toyota.

Toyota Australia Vice President Sales, Marketing & Franchise Operations Sean Hanley said at the time the figures confirmed the healthy underlying demand that has been curtailed by previous supply issues.

“Now that supply has vastly improved for Toyota, there are clear indications of a resurgence in Hybrid Electric demand here in Australia and also in markets like Europe and the United States,” Mr Hanley said.

“That’s because consumers increasingly regard Hybrid Electric models as providing practical, capable and affordable vehicles compared to petrol variants that help cut their carbon footprint while reducing fuel bills – and they retain strong resale values.”

Ford Ranger
Bangkok Thailand- Mar 23,2022 Next Gen Ford Ranger Raptor shown on stage at Bangkok international motor show. New model Ford Ranger Raptor 2022

Breaking more records

FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said the continued growth in the market has seen the industry break ten record monthly sales results in the past year.

“April’s result highlights strong consumer confidence in purchasing new vehicles, surpassing our expectations and is a testament to consumer choice and the industry’s resilience in a challenging economic landscape.”

The SUV category continues to dominate sales, representing 55.7 per cent of total market share in April.

Light Commercials held steady, claiming 22.0 per cent of sales, reflecting ongoing demand for vehicles that meet the work and lifestyle requirements of Australians. Passenger vehicles accounted for 17.8 per cent of sales.

Toyota was the market leader with sales of 20,771, followed by Ford (8,648), Mazda (7,301), Kia (6,653) and Mitsubishi (5,314).

The Toyota RAV4 was Australia’s top selling vehicle with sales of 5,857, followed by the Ford Ranger (5,569), Toyota HiLux (4,693), Ford Everest (2,400) and Isuzu Ute D-Max (2,380).

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