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Cracking EOFY bargains help new-car market bounce back: June sales strongest since coronavirus pandemic began

The new-car market bounced back in June.

The lure of an EOFY year bargain helped make June the strongest month of new car sales since the coronavirus pandemic began, according to official data from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI).

But don't get too excited - sales in June were still down 6.4 per cent when compared to the same month in 2019. But the decrease was much smaller than the 17.9 per cent fall in March, 48.5 per cent fall in April and 35.3 per cent fall in May.

Australians purchased some 110,234 new cars in June, with the lure of serious EOFY bargains thought to have tempted plenty of people into dealerships over the final weeks of the month.

"Some states have seen the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, and this has increased floor traffic through dealerships,” says FCAI chief executive Tony Weber said. “In addition, June is traditionally a very strong month for new vehicle sales. The End of Financial Year campaigns are well known, so it’s an excellent time for businesses and consumers to replace their vehicles.

“In June 2020, this has been reflected in strong results for business purchases, which have increased by 6.3 per cent on June 2019. The extension of the Government’s instant asset write-off scheme has also been a positive influence. This program allows businesses to bring forward tax deductions for eligible expenditure.

“Finally, we have seen a strong surge in marketing activity from both brands and dealerships, who are offering an array of attractive retail packages in a bid to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic."

In terms of brands, Toyota finished the month in number-one spot with 22,867 sales - more than double the sales of its closest competitor, Mazda, which finished in second with 9420 sales. Hyundai closed June in third spot with 7737 sales, followed by Ford (7624 sales) and Mitsubishi (7419 sales).

No surprises when it comes to the best selling nameplates. The Toyota HiLux finished first with 6537 sales, followed by the Ford Ranger, with 5329 sales. Next is the Corolla (3008 sales), the LandCruiser (2909 sales) and the Triton (2721 sales).

While the FCAI is happy to point out the green shoots emerging in the new car market, it is also quick to point out that there is work still to be done, highlighting that June marked the 27th consecutive month of negative growth for new-car sales in Australia.

“Stimulus packages from the Federal Government, such as Job Keeper and Job Seeker, have helped to restore some consumer confidence and supported the small bounce back during June," Mr Weber says. "However, there’s no doubt that the new vehicle industry in Australia is still under high pressure. We’re not out of the woods yet."

Andrew Chesterton
Contributing Journalist
Andrew Chesterton should probably hate cars. From his hail-damaged Camira that looked like it had spent a hard life parked at the end of Tiger Woods' personal driving range, to the Nissan Pulsar Reebok that shook like it was possessed by a particularly mean-spirited demon every time he dared push past 40km/h, his personal car history isn't exactly littered with gold. But that seemingly endless procession of rust-savaged hate machines taught him something even more important; that cars are more than a collection of nuts, bolts and petrol. They're your ticket to freedom, a way to unlock incredible experiences, rolling invitations to incredible adventures. They have soul. And so, somehow, the car bug still bit. And it bit hard. When "Chesto" started his journalism career with News Ltd's Sunday and Daily Telegraph newspapers, he covered just about everything, from business to real estate, courts to crime, before settling into state political reporting at NSW Parliament House. But the automotive world's siren song soon sounded again, and he begged anyone who would listen for the opportunity to write about cars. Eventually they listened, and his career since has seen him filing car news, reviews and features for TopGear, Wheels, Motor and, of course, CarsGuide, as well as many, many others. More than a decade later, and the car bug is yet to relinquish its toothy grip. And if you ask Chesto, he thinks it never will.
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