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Ford Ranger puts in explosive performance to overtake Toyota HiLux in record April 2021 new-car sales

The Ford Ranger ute was once again the best-selling model in Australia in April 2021.

The Australian new-vehicle market registered a positive sales result for the sixth month in a row in April 2021. In fact, its volume was up a staggering 137.2 per cent month-on-month, to a record 92,347 units.

For reference, sales increased by 12.4, 13.5, 11.1, 5.1 and 22.4 per cent in November 2020, December 2020, January 2021, February 2021 and March 2021 respectively.

However, sales were down 13.7 per cent year-on-year in 2020, partly due to 31 consecutive months of negative results, although they were up an encouraging 30.7 per cent year-to-date in first four months of 2021.

Toyota (20,208 units, +95.7%) may have led allcomers again in April 2021, owning four of the Top 10 models, but the HiLux ute (4222, +80.5%) was bumped out of its usual top spot by its archrival, the surging Ford Ranger (5021, +226.0%).

In fact, the HiLux finished the month in third position, with it also falling behind another Toyota model, the RAV4 mid-size SUV (4506 units, +135.8%).

Fourth place went to the Toyota LandCruiser upper-large SUV (2595 units, +180.8%), while one of its other siblings, the Corolla small car (2073, +73.5) claimed seventh position.

The Top Five models were rounded out by a third ute, the Mitsubishi Triton (2458 units, +424.1%), which experienced significant growth alongside the related ASX small SUV (2028, +482.8%) that finished in eighth position.

The remaining sixth, ninths and 10th places went to the Mazda CX-5 mid-size SUV (2353 units, +263.1%), Hyundai i30 small car (2005, +188.5%) and Isuzu D-Max ute (1999, +163.0%) respectively.

And when it came to the rest of the Top 10 brands, Mazda (10,052 units, +232.6%) continued its strong rebound to take second place, while Mitsubishi (7513, +333.3%) and Ford (7146, +217.5%) surprised in third and fourth position respectively.

The final places went to Hyundai (5722 units, +156.9%), Kia (5707, +129.0%), Nissan (3500, +138.4%), Subaru (3451, +169.2%), Volkswagen (3123, +135.2%) and MG (3007, +626.3%).

For reference, the SUV was the most popular type of new vehicle in April 2021, with a commanding 53.3 per cent share, followed by the light-commercial vehicle (23.5%) and passenger car (19.6%).

Sales in every state and territory grew in April 2021, with Tasmania (+157.6%) leading Queensland (+144.4%), New South Wales (+143.9%), Victoria (+142.0%), Western Australia (+139.0%), South Australia (+134.7%), the Northern Territory (+98.4%) and the ACT (+4.1%).

And it was rental, private and business sales that laid the foundation for April 2021’s overall growth, up 45.6, 43.0 and 18.7 per cent respectively, while government sales were down 14.4 per cent.

Commenting on these results, Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries chief executive Tony Weber said: “New-vehicle sales are a direct reflection of the performance of the broader economy in terms of consumer and business confidence.

“This time last year, we were seeing significant impacts from COVID-19, with less customer activity and inquiries to dealerships.

“Historically, the April result is between 70,000 and 80,000 vehicles, so the 2021 result is very significant.

“This sales trend is expected to continue as we enter the final two months of the financial year.”

The most popular brands of April 2021

RankingBrandSalesVariance %

The most popular models of April 2021

RankingModelSalesVariance %
1Ford Ranger5021+226.0
2Toyota RAV44506+135.8
3Toyota HiLux4222+80.5
4Toyota LandCruiser wagon2595+180.8
5Mitsubishi Triton2458+424.1
6Mazda CX-52353+263.1
7Toyota Corolla2073+73.5
8Mitsubishi ASX2028+482.8
9Hyundai i302005+188.5
10Isuzu D-Max1999+163.0