The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries has released new car sales for April showing an 8.9% drop compared to April 2018 sales.

The Australian new car market is slowing down if the April sales figures are anything to go by, with the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) revealing an 8.9% drop compared to April 2018. Indeed, year-to-date sales are down 8.1% compared with the same time last year (2018).

Those of you who checked out the sales figures in March will have noticed the Mitsubishi Triton held down third spot as one of the month’s best-selling vehicles. It took third place with around 2666 sales but this month, see, screen grab below, it’s nowhere to be seen. In fact, Mitsubishi lost out big time in April with both the ASX and Outlander also falling out of the Top 10 best-sellers list from March where they held positions ninth and 10, respectively.

Despite these drops Mitsubishi managed to hold onto third place in terms of overall marketshare and even recorded growth on April 2018 figures, selling 30,06 vehicles in April compared with 26,753 in April 2018. When asked about the dip in Triton’s sales form, Mitsubishi Australia’s communications boss, Karl Gehling told Practical Motoring, “the result reflects the usual dip in LCV sales before the May/June EOFY”.

Holden managed to claw back some ground in April (overall marketshare) moving from 10th to ninth; Honda fell to 10th place. And VW and Nissan traded places, with the Japanese car maker falling to eighth place as VW leapfrogged it into seventh spot. Beyond that, the top six best selling brands stayed as they were in March: Toyota, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Ford, and Kia.

Tony Weber, chief executive of the FCAI, said, “The results for April are in line with trends for year-to-date 2019. We have seen a decrease of around eight per cent across the first four months of the year.

“This decrease is the result of a number of factors in the Australian market, including the downturn in the housing market, the tightening of lending practices, environmental factors such as drought and flood, and, of course, the imminent Federal Government election.”

In terms of the vehicle mix of sales in April: Passenger vehicles totalled 23,816 sales or 31.5% of the market; SUVs totalled 33,190 sales or 43.9% of the market; and Light Commercial vehicles totalled 15,601 sales or 20.6% of the market.

Toyota continued to hold onto the top spot with 15,135 sales. Mazda, with 7644 sales, claimed second position, and was followed by Hyundai in third position with 6469 sales. Ford, with 4803 sales and Mitsubishi, with 4717, rounded out the top five best-selling brands.

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