cars, utes

Hansy Mannil Jul 10, 2023

Utes were the big sellers as August hit record sales figures.

We Australians have always had a thing for utes, but not even the most diehard fan of this icon of Australian motoring could have predicted just how popular they've become in recent years. In fact, they're now so popular that new car buyers bought more utes last month than small cars. And while you might not think that's such a big deal, the fact is that August isn't even the busiest month for selling utes.

Traditionally, ute sales peak towards the end of the financial year in June and quieten down a bit for a couple of months after. Small cars, on the other hand, enjoy a steady trade throughout the year. However, there has been a distinct shift in consumer preference as the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries informs us that 17,310 utes were sold last month while only 16,311 small cars took to the road.

But while the August sales figures are a bit of a surprise the overall year-to-date tally shows that small car sales still outpace utes sales by 145,600 to 136,300.

Other notable sales figures for the month see SUVs hitting 38,000 while passenger cars sold only 35,700. This means that 2017 will be the first year that SUVs have sold more than passenger cars in Australia. This along with the ute sales figures seem to suggest that more and more drivers are favouring the high driving position that SUVs and many utes offer. Either that or we're falling in love with physically bigger and tougher cars all over again.

Last year's best-selling car, the Toyota HiLux looks on track to maintain its grip on the title as it managed to outsell every other car on the market for the sixth month in a row. It's an astonishing feat, and even though the Ford Ranger made ground on the HiLux earlier in the year, there will inevitably be only one winner.

Some may point to Toyota's wave of mass discounts throughout the year as opposed to the quality of the car as the real reason for the spike in sales and they do have a point. Ford had closed the gap earlier this year but once the discounts became available the HiLux once again steamed ahead.

However, with Toyota set to gain an unassailable lead in the next month or so, we fully expect to see those discounts vanish into thin air once the HiLux is named the year's top selling car. This would be the first time in history that a ute tops the chart for two years in a row.

The sales figures last month were a record for August, but regardless of the increase in overall sales, some brands reported a decrease in new cars delivered. Of the top ten brands in Australia, five revealed that their sales took a hit with Audi down 28.3% and BMW down 13.6%.

Overall though, the Australian car industry looks set for another record year of sales. The year-to-date figures show that 788,968 new cars were sold in the first eight months of the year which is an increase of 0.6% for the same period last year. Not much of an increase but they are still incredibly healthy figures that show just how well our economy is currently doing.

The top selling cars in August 2017

According to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), these are the best selling cars in August and as you can see the HiLux outsells the nearest small car(which incidentally is also a Toyota) by over 1300, quite the margin indeed.

  1. Toyota HiLux - 4287
  2. Ford Ranger - 3588
  3. Toyota Corolla - 2948
  4. Hyundai Tucson - 2206
  5. Mazda3 - 2163
  6. Hyundai i30 - 2143
  7. Toyota Camry - 2107
  8. Holden Commodore - 2071
  9. Mazda CX-5 - 2048
  10. Mitsubishi Triton - 1970


The top selling brands in August 2017

FCAI also tell us that Toyota top the bill as the most popular brand with 10,000 more cars sold than its nearest rival Mazda.

  1. Toyota - 18,511
  2. Mazda - 8511
  3. Hyundai - 7800
  4. Holden - 6984
  5. Mitsubishi - 6649
  6. Ford - 6645
  7. Volkswagen - 4730
  8. Subaru - 4579
  9. Kia - 4507
  10. Nissan - 4095

With such record sales in the year to date, it's a pretty safe bet that Toyota will take both the top brand and top car for 2017 in terms of sales.

If you're thinking about upgrading your current ute to the new HiLux or even if you fancy one of the smaller cars on the list, Stratton can help you find the best finance for your new car. So get in touch today, or apply for an online quote to see how we can make your dream car a reality.

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