A surge in demand for 4x4 Utes is behind the healthy 12% per annum growth in the Light Commercial Vehicle sales in 2012.
This is the main finding from data released by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries covering new vehicles sales data for the 2012 calendar year. ACA Research has summarised the key findings from the sales data in the light commercial segment of the Australian Automotive market below.
The Light Commercial Market
In total, just over 198,000 new light commercial vehicles were sold in 2012, up from 177,000 sold in 2011, representing a 12.2% increase year on year. A surge in demand for Utes and Workhorses, particularly 4x4s, was the key driver of growth in the market. These vehicles are clearly the most popular vehicles in the light commercial segment, accounting for almost 90% of vehicles sold in the category.
As in other segments of the automotive industry, Toyota is the market leader. While smaller than than the Passenger and SUV segments, Toyota is particularly successful in the Utes segment, with market share almost hitting 30% in 2012. Toyota sold 58,000 light commercial vehicles in 2012, with the Hilux Ute and HiAce Van performing strongly. Nissan had a particuarly strong performance in 2012, leapfrogging Ford to take second spot.
Interestingly the next tier of manufacturers, Ford, Mitsubishi and particularly Holden, struggled to maintain market share. Off the back of new model releases in 2012, some manufacturers not traditionally known for commercial vehicles posted some strong results, with Volkswagen (+65%), Great Wall (+35%), Mazda (+23%) all doing particularly well.