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Record January for used imported cars

A continuation of the buoyant used imported passenger vehicle market was evident last month with 13,719 registrations, an increase of 6.1 per cent on January 2017’s 12,933 units.

This was the best January sales of used imported cars on record.

Toyota was once again the top-selling used import car brand for January with 3,232 sales, which was a decrease of 4.8 per cent on the 3,396 units in same month of last year. The marque starts the year with a market share of 23.6 per cent – a fall of 2.7 per cent on the same month last year.

Nissan held onto second with 2,629 sales last month – a jump of 15.9 per cent on January 2017’s 2,268 units. It holds 19.2 per cent of the market share.

Mazda was third on 2,310 registrations, which was a healthy increase of 16.7 per cent on the same month of last year, and has a market share of 16.8 per cent.

The battle for top used car model was close with the Mazda Axela back in the top spot, but only by 34 units, while the Suzuki Swift was second and the Mazda Demio was third – bumping the Nissan Tiida into fourth. There were 653 Axela sold during January –  up by 7.8 per cent on the same month of last year; Swift registrations totalled 619 units –  an increase of 14.2 per cent, and 588 Demio sales – a remarkable jump of 26.5 per cent.

The three models hold 4.8 per cent, 4.5 per cent and 4.3 per cent of the monthly market share respectively.

The regions that performed best when compared to the same month a year earlier were Wanganui, up 112 per cent from 63 in 2017 to 134 units last month, with Rotorua and Invercargill rounding out the top three, up 67 per cent and 40 per cent respectively.

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Used imported commercials steady

There were 1,024 used imported commercial vehicles sold last month, a 10.3 per cent increase compared to January 2017, when 928 vehicles were registered.

Many regions around New Zealand saw gains in used commercial vehicle registrations in January.

Toyota topped the ladder on 441 units, a 9.2 per cent increase compared to 404 in the same month last year for a market share of 43.1 per cent.

Nissan came second with 210 units, which was an increase of 6.6 per cent compared to January 2016, resulting in a market share of 20.5 per cent.

Sales of Mazdas decreased by 6 per cent from 83 in January 2016 to 78 last month.

The Toyota Hiace remained the dominant model, with a 33.4 per cent market share and sales of 342 last month. This was nearly 300 ahead of the Mazda Bongo and the Nissan Caravan, who were both in joint second place with sales of 65 units.

Many regions around New Zealand saw gains in used commercial vehicle registrations in January. Out of the main centres, Christchurch was the standout, with dealerships selling 123 units in the month of January – a 39.8 per cent increase from 88 at the same time last year.

Both Whangarei and Dunedin had steady increases compared to January last year, with 47.8 and 37.0 per cent respectively.


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Imports up on same month last year

January’s import figures show a decrease against December 2016, but healthy increases when compared to the same month last year. There were 10,708 used passenger vehicles imported. This was 12.5 per cent down on December but 9.8 per cent up on January 2016, when 9,748 entered the country.

New cars were similar compared to December, with numbers being down 13.5 per cent, but up massively on January 2016, when only 6,647 new passenger vehicles entered. Last month, 8,496 new cars came in, an increase of 27.8 per cent

The vast majority of used imports continue to arrive from Japan, but that country’s market share is down two per cent on last year’s 93.7 per cent, with a year-to-date market share of 91.7 per cent.

Australia and the UK make up the top three with 3.6 per cent and 2.6 per cent respectively, both up on their market share figures for 2016.

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Highest sales ever for January

2017 began with a bang as the Motor Industry Association (MIA) reported the highest January vehicle sales ever. New vehicle registrations were up 16 per cent from January 2016 and 9.5 per cent on the previous month to 13,823 unit sales.

Passenger and SUV registrations grew 14 per cent on January 2016 to 10,150 vehicles, and commercial registrations were up 23 per cent to 3,763 vehicles. “This is the strongest ever start to a new sales year with record levels of new vehicles purchased by New Zealand businesses and consumers across the passenger and commercial sectors,” said MIA CEO David Crawford in a statement.

“As 2017 gets underway, nothing has changed with the economic environment that existed for most of 2016,” he added.

Toyota retained its grip on the passenger market it a 17 per cent share, followed by Holden with 13 per cent, and Ford on 11 per cent. In the commercial sector, Ford was the market leader with 21 per cent, narrowly beating out Toyota, on 19 per cent. Mazda followed with an eight per cent market share.

The Ford Ranger, which was the best-selling model for 2015 and 2016, began 2017 at the top of the table with 741 units. The Toyota Corolla came second for January with 590 units, followed by the Toyota RAV4 with 556 units. The RAV4 was the top-selling rental car for January, with 418 new registrations recorded.

The global dominance of SUVs in new car sales is also prominent in New Zealand, accounting for 40 per cent of January registrations. The SUV medium segment accounted for 17 per cent of the total market for January, followed by the small passenger segment with 13 per cent and the large SUV with a 12 per cent share.



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