Australia sets new July vehicles sales record

New vehicle sales achieved the highest July result on record as Australian customers took delivery of 96,859 new vehicles.

This is an increase of 14.7 per cent on the same month in 2022 and breaks the previous July record of 92,754 in 2017.

FCAI Chief Executive, Tony Weber, said the July 2023 result was an indication that the market continued to recover from supply shortages resulting from COVID plant shutdowns, microprocessor shortages and logistics and shipping bottlenecks.

“During the past 12 months the issue has been one of securing supply for consumers, however as these pressures ease, we are starting to see a return to more stable market conditions,” said Weber.

“Many of these vehicles were ordered several months ago, so it is important to monitor the broader economic conditions through 2023 and their impact on private and business demand.

Weber added that sales in the passenger vehicle segment remained at an historically low level, however many of these sales have transitioned into the SUV category.

“Passenger vehicles now represent 17.7 per cent of the market in July while the SUV category now sits at 58.9 per cent. However, contrary to widely held opinion, not all SUVs are large vehicles as 75 per cent of SUV sales are in the medium, small and light categories.”

Sales of zero and low-emission vehicles continued to grow with 17.9 per cent being battery electric, hybrid or plug-in hybrid models. Battery electric vehicles accounted for seven per cent of July sales.

China continues to grow in importance as a country of origin with 15,853 new vehicles being from that country. That is an increase of 130.1 per cent on the same month last year.

Sales across every state and territory increased this month compared with July 2022. Sales in the Australian Capital Territory increased by 22.4 per cent (1,438), New South Wales 11.3 per cent (29,516), Queensland 4.3 per cent (19,719), South Australia 17.0 per cent (6,612); Tasmania 33.9 per cent (1,777), Victoria 22.7 per cent (27,097), Western Australia 21.6 per cent (9,797) and Northern Territory 19.4 per cent (903).

Toyota was the highest-selling marque with 19,191 sales. Mazda followed with 8,307 then Ford (7,109), Hyundai (6,521) and Kia (6,150).

Ford Ranger was the top-selling vehicle recording 5,143 sales. It was followed by Toyota Hi-Lux (4,670), MG ZS (3,852), Tesla Model Y (3,330) and Toyota RAV4 (2,750).

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Dr Richard Creighton-Smythe

Dr Richard Creighton-Smythe is a retired proctologist and British car enthusiast.

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