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Toyota will be the best seller of 2016 - but which one?

Toyota has cemented its place at the top of the Australian automotive market with a strong November run.

More than 1 million cars already sold in 2016 as Toyota's HiLux and Corolla fight for number 1.

Toyota has cemented its place at the top of the Australian automotive market with a strong November run, all but ensuring one of its two most popular cars - the Corolla and the HiLux - will end 2016 as the number one selling vehicle in Australia.

If the HiLux can hold on to its number one spot that it claimed in November, it would be the first time ever that a ute claims the annual top sales gong.

The overall market improved slightly over October, with 98,937 cars registered for the month, which is a lift of some 5000 units from October.

SUV sales continue to close in relentlessly on the passenger car sector.

The Ford Ranger edged out the Corolla for second position in November, but it’ll fall some way short of the top spot for the year. More than 32,000 Rangers in both 4x2 and 4x4 guises have sold so far in 2016, compared to approximately 38,000 HiLuxs and 37,400 Corollas.

Toyota’s Camry is finishing the year strongly, lifting two spots over its October score to finish fourth ahead of the Mazda3, which remains static in fifth.

Hyundai’s i30 drops to sixth, with the Holden Commodore in seventh and Hyundai’s Accent in eighth

Mazda’s CX-5 – still Australia’s best selling SUV – jumps back into the top ten in ninth spot, as does the Nissan Navara in tenth.

SUV sales continue to close in relentlessly on the passenger car sector, with a five per cent drop in the latter in November bringing SUVs to within 2200 sales of overtaking the formerly dominant category on a month-by-month basis.

Overall, passenger cars account for 41 per cent of all sales to the end of November, and SUVs almost 38 per cent.

A look through the passenger car sector shows gains for the run-out Nissan Micra (up 53 per cent month on month) and Holden’s Spark (up 34 per cent), with a massive 76 per cent slump for the Suzuki Celerio.

The Accent is up 45 per cent, while the Kia Rio (down 48 per cent), the Ford Fiesta and Holden Barina (both off 43 per cent) are struggling in the wake of strong SUV sales.

Subaru’s Impreza is in run-out mode ahead of a new model in December, recording just 85 sales last month where it usually averages around 500.

The Ford Mondeo has shown signs of life, lifting more than 47 per cent in November, while the Nissan Altima (off 42 per cent) continues to suffer.

In the medium premium segment, Audi took back second for the month with its A4 from BMW’s 3-Series, but both are still days behind the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, which sold a third more again (686) on top of the other two’s combined scores (270 and 252 respectively).

In the SUV stakes, Jeep’s Italian-built Renegade has finally started to fire, logging 119 sales and a 133 per cent sales increase month on month, while the Mitshibishi ASX also posted a sales increase. 

The Mazda CX-3 still leads the small SUV category, with its big brother, the CX-5 leading the medium class, despite a drop of 10 per cent month on month and a resurgent Nissan X-Trail, which came within a smidge of knocking it off month on month. 

Toyota’s Prado isn’t having its own way in the large segment, shedding more than 400 sales in November to be toppled by the Subaru Outback.

Interestingly, both BMW’s 7 Series and Mercedes-Benz’s S-Class are both off 50 per cent month on month, as the Bentley Bentayga (12 sales in its first month on sale) and Range Rover premium SUVs improve month on month.

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