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Car sales on the rise

The Holden Commodore was Australia's favourite car again in January 2010.

Most makes and models did better than a year earlier, as customers snapped up everything from cheap Korean imports to value-priced local family cars.  Long-term price leader Hyundai did best of the best, lifting its sales by 67.7 per cent to hit an all-time high for the Korean carmaker.

Hyundai has been in Australia since 1986 but has never had a better January, thanks partly to its $13,990 Getz but also the successful i30 and iLoad van.  The locally-made Ford Falcon, Holden Commodore and Toyota Camry-Aurion went up by 15.4 per cent, with the Falcon doing much better as sales lifted from 1630 to 2318.

Only two of the top-10 brands went backwards, with Mitsubishi falling 50 sales short of its 2009 result and dropping to seventh in the rankings and Honda sliding all the way to ninth after losing more than 2000 sales for the month.  The overall sales improvement for January was 11.6 per cent over a year earlier, according to official VFacts sales numbers released yesterday, a hopeful reflection of the local economic recovery from the global financial crisis.

The monthly total was also helped by carryover deliveries from the showroom rush in December, when business buyers raced to take advantage of the Federal government's investment allowance.

The Holden Commodore was Australia's favourite car again in January with Toyota on top overall, followed by Holden, Ford, Mazda and Hyundai.  "This is a strong result. New-car affordability is better than ever and has been further enhanced by the tariff cut on many imported vehicles,” the chief executive of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, Andrew McKellar, said yesterday.

“New car buyers have effectively been handed a ‘tax cut’ and many brands have moved quickly to reduce prices or increase vehicle specifications."

AUSTRALIA'S FAVOURITE CARS

January, 2010

1. Holden Commodore 3241
2. Mazda3 3223
3. Toyota HiLux 2997
4. Toytoa Corolla 2711
5. Ford Falcon 2318
6. Holden Cruze 2218
7. Hyundai i30 2116
8. Hyundai Getz 1717
9. Mitsubishi Lancer 1588
10. Toyota Yaris 1562

* Source: VFacts