The Australian new car market set a new record in 2017, according to VFACTS a total of 1,189,116 new vehicles were registered, an increase of 0.9 per cent over 2016.
The year ended with a record December seeing a total of 102,820 sales, up 4.1 per cent on December 2016. Eight months set new records in 2017.
Remarkably, 2017 marks the industry’s fourth record in five years. With such big numbers, plenty of manufacturers enjoyed growth.
For the 15th consecutive year, Toyota was the biggest selling brand moving 216,566 vehicles, its best result in five years and more than 100,000 sales ahead of Japanese rival, Mazda.
The HiLux ute repeated its heroics of 2016 to remain Australia’s most purchased new car with a whopping 47,093 registrations. The Ford Ranger finised in second spot with 42,728 sales. 
The Corolla was the most popular passenger car in 2017 easily dusting the Mazda 3.
2017 will be remembered as the year SUVs overtook passenger cars to be the market’s largest category.
FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said, “Australians bought 465,646 SUVs during 2017 for a 39.2 per cent share of the total market, compared with 450,012 passenger cars with a 37.8 per cent share,” Mr Weber said.
“The shift in industry dynamic we observed last year has now become entrenched in our market. It is a growth pattern that we expect will continue.”
Mazda’s ever-popular CX-5 took the chocolates as the best selling SUV, although Hyundai’s Tucson wasn’t far behind.
The markets biggest movers included Kia (up 28.3 per cent and eclipsing 50,000 sales for the first time), Honda (up 14.6 per cent), Subaru (up 11.7 per cent), Isuzu (up 10.4 per cent) and Mitsubishi (up 9.9 per cent).
On the other end of the spectrum, Jeep continues its fall into obscurity (down 34.5 per cent), while perennial niche segment creator BMW also went backwards (down 15.7 per cent).
Nissan (down 15.3 per cent), Audi (down 9.3 per cent) Hyundai (down 4.5 per cent), Holden (down 4.2 per cent) and Ford (down 3.8 per cent) also suffered a drop in numbers.
With interest rates set to remain low for the foreseeable future, it’s not out of the question to see an even stronger result in 2018.
Top 10 selling new vehicles 2017
Toyota HiLux - 47,093
Ford Ranger - 42,728
Mazda 3 - 32,690
Hyundai i30 - 28,780
Mazda CX-5 - 25,831
Toyota Camry - 23,620
Mitsubishi Triton - 23,605
Top 10 selling vehicle brands 2017 (2016 finish in brackets)
Toyota - 216,566 +3.3%
Mazda - 116,349 -1.6%
Hyundai - 97,013 -4.5%
Holden - 90,306 -4.2%
Mitsubishi - 80,654 +9.9%
Ford - 78,161 -3.8%
Volkswagen - 58,004 +2.5%
Nissan - 56,594 -15.3%
Kia - 54,737 +28.3%
Subaru - 52,511 +11.7%
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