January won’t go down as a great month for the new car sales industry with VFACTS data showing a 7.4% dip in sales compared to the same month last year.
81,994 new vehicles left dealerships in the month with SUVs again being the most popular vehicle type.
Passenger car sales (i.e. sedans and hatches) slumped another 12% in the month.
Some of the brands that had a less than stellar start to 2019 included German luxury duo – Audi and Mercedes-Benz.
Honda, Hyundai, Nissan and Subaru all also made double digit dips.
But it was industry stalwarts Holden and Ford that took the biggest hit – the Lion brand recorded sales more than 27% lower than in January 2018, the blue oval brand retracted nearly 22%.
The sales slowdown for Ford also meant the brand tumbled out of the top five selling car brands in Australia, potentially for the first time ever.
On a more positive note, car brands that bucked the downward trend in January included Chinese manufacturers – MG, Haval and Great Wall.
Toyota, Mitsubishi, Kia, Lexus and Jaguar also gained sales in the month in Australia.
HiLux, Mazda3 and Ford Ranger were the three biggest-selling models in January.