New Car Sales January: SUVs Strong, Mazda3 Pips Corolla, Falcon Falling Photo:

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Trevor Collett | Feb, 05 2015 | 2 Comments

A familiar pair topped the sales charts in Australia for the first month of 2015, while the market overall had its quietest start in the last three years.

The Mazda3 got the early jump over its Toyota Corolla rival in January, notching up 3903 sales against Corolla’s 3472.

The ‘3’ has been bridesmaid to the Corolla for the last two years running, and Mazda will no doubt be keen to reverse the standings come December this year.

Mazda3 sales were actually down by over 14 percent on the same month last year, when the combined forces of a new model and run-out prices for the old model saw much healthier sales.

The new car market kicked off the year with a grand total of 82,116 sales - down 169 sales (or 0.2 percent) on January 2014.

Trends from last year have crept over the line into 2015 with SUV sales still on the rise, while passenger car sales continue to shrink.

Hyundai’s ix35 continues to lead the small SUV class and made another appearance in the top-ten last month with 1636 sales - up 9.4 percent.

The ix35’s sales tally last month put it a long way ahead of the second-placed Mitsubishi ASX (869 sales), Nissan’s Qashqai in third (784) and the Subaru XV in fourth (688).

Mazda’s CX-5 is still at the head of its medium SUV segment with 1699 sales, and the recent arrival of an updated model could see this number grow into February and beyond.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee was the top-selling large SUV last month, while Toyota’s Landcruiser outsold the Nissan Patrol in the two-horse race that is the upper-large SUV segment.

For SUV customers with a slightly bigger budget to spend on their new cars, the best-sellers last month were Audi’s Q3 (small), the Audi Q5 (medium), BMW X5 (large) and Mercedes-Benz’s GL-Class (upper large).

One model bucking the passenger car trend last month was Holden’s small Cruze, which spent much of 2014 on the fringe of the top-ten.

Sales were boosted by the arrival of an updated model and run-out deals on its predecessor, to rise 34 percent over the same month last year.

Cruze even skipped ahead of its Holden Commodore stablemate, with the pair finishing the month in fifth and sixth positions respectively.

Sales for Ford’s locally-built cars were down 14.2 percent over January last year, with its fresh-faced Falcon FG X causing little trouble to the scorers at just 381 sales.

Large car sales were down 18.5 percent overall, but that will be little comfort to Ford with Falcon sales down 17.4 percent on a lowly 461 sales through January last year.

Falcon Ute sales dipped even further than its sedan sibling - down 31.2 percent on last January to 163 sales - while Territory sales were a healthier 639 units but still down 6.2 percent.

Hyundai’s Genesis will be one to watch in the large car segment, having chalked up 56 sales and outselling Peugeot’s 508 and the Skoda Superb.

Toyota kicked off 2015 where it left off last year, commanding 16.6 percent of the market with 13,646 sales.

Mazda was best of the rest with 9,006 sales for an 11 percent market share followed by Holden (8,401), Hyundai (6,901) and Ford (5,357).

MORE News & Reviews: VFACTS | Mazda CX-5 | Hyundai ix35 | SUVs

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