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Trevor Collett | Feb 3, 2016

Australia’s new car market is off to another strong start in 2016 with 84,373 sales recorded for January - up 2.7 percent on the same month last year.

VFACTS reveals that healthy growth for SUV (up 19.5 percent), light commercial (up 11.9 percent) and sports car (up 38.6 percent) sales has seen January 2016 top January 2015, giving the market a solid opportunity to better last year’s record sales figures for the year as a whole come December.

Mazda is celebrating its strongest January on record with 10,016 sales. This figure eclipses Mazda’s previous January record of 9411, set in 2014, and is the first time the carmaker has beaten 10,000 sales in the opening month of the year.

In further good news for Mazda, the Mazda3 has started 2016 with an overall sales-win and a win over its arch rival, the Toyota Corolla.

The ‘3’ found 3722 new homes last month to find itself almost 1000 units ahead of the Corolla in second place overall on 2758.

January is a popular month for Australians to holiday, and the new-car market can often experience its own ‘holiday’ in January with a month of figures that upset the status quo. Last month was no exception.

Ford was one to take advantage of the summer vacation with its Ranger pickup (2418 sales) pipping the evergreen Toyota HiLux (2341 sales) to finish the month on the podium in third place overall.

But from there, it’s a long drop to the next-best in the Ford range - that being the Territory SUV on 500 sales.

The Ford Falcon continues to set new sales-lows with each passing month, finishing the first month of its final year on the planet with just 235 sales. Adding in Falcon Ute sales only bumps this figure by 90 units.

The Holden Colorado joined the Ranger as another pickup with a strong start to the year, chalking-up a ninth-placing on 1691 sales - just one sale behind the Volkswagen Golf.

And it was a similar story for Nissan’s Navara, rounding out the top-ten on 1670 sales. The Mitsubishi Triton was absent from the top-ten with a 17th place finish on 1199 sales - again, one ahead of the next in line (the Nissan X-Trail on 1198).

The Triton wasn’t the only top-ten regular to go AWOL in January, with the Holden Commodore finishing the month in 15th place on 1242 sales and the Toyota Camry - December’s overall sales-topper - shifting just 503 units (down 55 percent on the same month last year).

As mentioned, the SUV class was one category that led the charge in growth last month but the Hyundai Tucson may have surprised some by beating all of the more-established players to be the nation’s best-selling SUV.

The Tucson finished fifth overall with 2065 sales, ahead the Mazda CX-5 (seventh, 1750 sales), Toyota RAV4 (11th, 1440 sales), Mitsubishi ASX (12th, 1393 sales) and Mazda CX-3 (13th, 1391 sales), while the X-Trail (18th, 1198 sales), Kia Sportage (19th, 1188) and Nissan Qashqai (20th, 1161) rounded out the overall top-twenty.

For the three new ‘ute-based’ SUVs, namely Mitsubishi’s Pajero Sport, Ford’s Everest and Toyota’s Fortuner, January saw the trio finish with 336, 287 and 274 sales respectively. As a comparison, Toyota’s Prado finished the month in 21st position overall with 1094 sales.

The Sportage helped Kia break into the overall top-ten seller’s list for carmakers in January on 3116 sales, ahead of Mercedes-Benz in 11th on 3099 and usual top-ten performer, Honda, on 2898.

Lamborghini raised eyebrows with no less than 22 units finding homes last month. This figure is 26 percent of its entire tally for 2015, and just five units less than the overall total for all of 2014.

Toyota started the year where it left off in 2015, topping the sales charts on 12,453, although this figure was down 8.8 percent on January last year.

Mazda was next with its record 10,016 units, followed by Hyundai (7001), Holden (6824) and Nissan, which rounded-out the top-five on 5563 sales.

Final word for January goes to the Ford Mustang.

In its first full month on the Australian market, the Mustang immediately commanded more than a quarter of the sports car market under $80,000 with 389 sales. As to how Ford’s year-long waiting list for the Mustang affects sales in the months ahead remains to be seen.

MORE News & Reviews: VFACTS | Mazda | Kia | Lamborghini

Top 10 Selling Brands - January 2016

  1. Toyota - 12,453 sales (down 8.8 percent)
  2. Mazda - 10,016 (up 11.2 percent)
  3. Hyundai - 7001 (up 1.4 percent)
  4. Holden - 6824 (down 18.8 percent)
  5. Nissan - 5563 (up 22.6 percent)
  6. Ford - 5504 (up 2.7 percent)
  7. Mitsubishi - 5007 (up 22.7 percent)
  8. Volkswagen - 4341 (down 1.3 percent)
  9. Subaru - 3405 (up 9.7 percent)
  10. Kia - 3116 (up 29 percent)

Top 10 Selling Models - January 2016

  1. Mazda3 - 3722 sales
  2. Toyota Corolla - 2758
  3. Ford Ranger - 2418
  4. Toyota HiLux - 2341
  5. Hyundai Tucson - 2065
  6. Hyundai i30 - 1852
  7. Mazda CX-5 - 1750
  8. Volkswagen Golf - 1692
  9. Holden Colorado - 1691
  10. Nissan Navara - 1670
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