The road to record sales of 1 million+ vehicles in Australia is still clear with the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) releasing the vehicle sales figures for May today.
A total of 88,597 vehicles were sold in May which is a 6.2 per cent increase over May 2006 sales. Year to date sales of motor vehicles are up 32,567 units or 8.4 per cent for the same period last year.
The FCAI made special mention of the resurgence in sales of Large family cars and SUVâ€™s. Great news for the VE Commodore, Ford Territory and upcoming Falcon â€˜Orionâ€™. Late last year this segment was in decline yet despite near record prices at the pumps the large Aussie car seems to be gaining back some of its lost ground.
Sales of large family-sized cars during May increased by 9.3 per cent when compared with the same month last year, while sales of â€˜upper largeâ€™ family cars increased by an astonishing 52 per cent or 284 sales.
"It's encouraging to see a consolidation in the Large and Upper Large segments which reflects both the introduction of exciting new product and the response of brands to the competitive challenges of the market. The resurgence in sales of SUVs and Large cars demonstrates that family-sized vehicles continue to meet the preferences of a significant number of Australian consumers because they suit their lifestyles and transport requirements," said FCAI Chief Executive Andrew McKellar.
On a year to date basis sales of large cars have increased by 5.4 per cent while the medium car segment which includes Camry and Aurion has also recorded a year to date improvement of 5.0 per cent over the same period in 2006.
Significantly, sales of small and light cars showed signs of weakness with a decline of 1.0 per cent and 0.3 per cent respectively. Toyota was once again â€˜top of the popsâ€™ having moved 19,371 vehicles from showroom floors with Holden a distant second (12,902 sales) and Ford an even more distant third with 9,571 sales.
So are the prophets of doom wrong in predicting the demise of the Falcon and Commodore large cars due to a shift towards smaller more economical cars? Its early days yet but with the Australian economy powering along and unemployment at an all-time low we see large car sales improving not declining in the foreseeable future.
Market share on a year to date basis by manufacturer is as follows;
â€¢ Toyota 21.9%
â€¢ Holden 14.8%
â€¢ Ford 10.5%
â€¢ Mazda 7.7%
â€¢ Nissan 6.3%
â€¢ Mitsubishi 6.1%
â€¢ Honda 6.0%