Browse over 9,000 car reviews

Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, Mitsubishi Triton and Isuzu D-Max dominate Top 10 new cars in strong January 2021 sales

Sales of the Isuzu D-Max ute (right) increased by a whopping 167.9 per cent month-on-month in January 2021.

In January 2021, the Australian new-vehicle market posted a positive sales result for the third month in a row, with its volume up 11.1 per cent month-on-month, to 79,666 units.

For reference, local sales were up 12.4 and 13.5 per cent in November and December 2020 respectively, although 2020 was down 13.7 per cent year-on-year following 31 consecutive months of negative results.

Toyota dominated in January 2021, with three of its models in the Top 10. Leading the way was the improving Toyota HiLux ute (3913 units, +31.8% month-on-month), which kept the rivalling Ford Ranger (3120, +18.9%) in second place yet again.

In a sign of the times, two other utes, the Mitsubishi Triton (1908 units, -8.0%) and Isuzu D-Max (1822, +167.9%), claimed the seventh and eighth positions respectively, with sales of the latter exploding following the recent release of its new-generation model.

That said, it was the evergreen Toyota RAV4 mid-size SUV (3066 units, +33.9%) that made it onto the podium, with the rivalling Mazda CX-5 (2081, +11.9%) and the sliding Toyota Corolla small car (2062, -13.0%) rounding out the Top 5 models.

Meanwhile, the Hyundai i30 small car (1952 units, -4.2%), Nissan X-Trail mid-size SUV (1593, +8.6%) and Kia Cerato small car (1545, +3.0) filled out the rest of the Top 10.

Unsurprisingly, Toyota (16,819 units, +13.6%) was the best-selling brand in January 2021, finishing well ahead of a resurgent Mazda (8508, +27.1%), which took home silver.

A growing Hyundai (5951 units, +9.3%) also made it onto the podium, fending off a plucky Kia (5500, +16.9%) and a steady Mitsubishi (5179, +1/4%), which were both Top 5 brands.

Ford (5099 units, +22.3%), Nissan (3756, +9.1%), Subaru (3223, +43.2%), Volkswagen (2722, -16.1%) and Mercedes-Benz Cars (2443, +31.5%) also placed in the Top 10.

The SUV was once again the most popular type of new vehicle, with a commanding 52.1 per cent share, followed by the passenger car (23.3%) and light-commercial vehicle (21.9%).

Sales in every state and territory grew in January 2021, with the Northern Territory (+38.7%) leading Western Australia (+24.9%), Queensland (+18.1%), South Australia (+17.0%), the ACT (+16.6%), New South Wales (+9.1%), Tasmania (+6.6%) and Victoria (+1.9%).

Private sales drove the overall growth in January 2021, up 25.4 per cent, while business (-1.3%), rental (-12.4%) and government (-11.2%) sales were all down.

Commenting on these results, Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries chief executive Tony Weber said: “During the past three months, sales had increased by 12.4 per cent compared to the corresponding period 12 months earlier.

“The January sales numbers are indicative of positive consumer confidence in the domestic economy.

“With attractive interest rates and a range of other economic indicators encouraging consumption, we hope to see this trend in new-vehicle purchasing continue through 2021.”

The most popular brands of January 2021

RankingBrandSalesVariance %
10Mercedes-Benz Cars2443+31.5

The most popular models of January 2021

RankingModelSalesVariance %
1Toyota HiLux3913+31.8
2Ford Ranger3120+18.9
3Toyota RAV43066+33.9
4Mazda CX-52081+11.9
5Toyota Corolla2062-13.0
6Hyundai i301952-4.2
7Mitsubishi Triton1908-8.0
8Isuzu D-Max1822+167.9
9Nissan X-Trail1593+8.6
10Kia Cerato1545+3.0