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The Toyota Hilux sold 3,792 units in June, nearly 1,000 more than the previous month. Picture: SUPPLIED
The Toyota Hilux sold 3,792 units in June, nearly 1,000 more than the previous month. Picture: SUPPLIED

SA’s new-vehicle sales confounded economic headwinds to record double-digit growth in June, despite high interest rates and inflation.

A combined 46,810 new cars, light commercial vehicles and trucks were sold in the month, the second-best performance this year. Year-to-date sales are up 4.8% at 265,824 units compared with the first six months of last year.

There is hope for better news for the economy and consumers during the second half of the year, says Lebo Gaoaketse, head of marketing and communications at WesBank. 

“More stable fuel prices, hopefully fewer if any interest rate changes, first-half growth for the manufacturing sector as well as a strong recovery in exchange rates will all contribute to economic performance as a whole during the second half, as well as affordability for consumers in the market for a new vehicle,” he said.

“It is clear to see the correlation between actual market performance and levels of demand as measured by applications for finance, which are now firmly driving new vehicle deals as opposed to pre-owned purchases.”

Gary McCraw, Director of the National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA), said the growth in the challenging economic environment was encouraging. Buyers are facing affordability pressures, a depreciating rand that drives prices higher, low business confidence, and political instability, he said.

Toyota continued to be the country’s most popular automotive brand last month, clocking 13,016 sales — its best performance of the year so far — giving it a 27.8% market share. The brand was led by the Hilux bakkie, which is back to being SA’s overall best seller after being toppled in April by the new-generation Ford Ranger. The Hilux sold 3,792 units in June, 994 more than the previous month.

The Ranger was in third place last month, behind the Corolla Cross SUV, which was one of five Toyotas in the top 10. The Fortuner SUV, Starlet hatchback and HiAce minibus each sold more than 1,300 units, but the new-generation Toyota Urban Cruiser (281 units) has so far failed to attain the sales heights of its smaller and cheaper predecessor.

Top 30 best-selling new vehicles — June 2023

  1. Toyota Hilux — 3,792
  2. Toyota Corolla Cross — 2,115
  3. Ford Ranger — 2,099
  4. Volkswagen Polo Vivo — 1,967
  5. Isuzu D-Max — 1,953
  6. Suzuki Swift — 1,685
  7. Toyota Fortuner — 1,639
  8. Toyota Starlet — 1,415
  9. Toyota HiAce — 1,364
  10. Nissan NP200 — 1,108
  11. Hyundai Grand i10 — 894
  12. Volkswagen Polo — 882
  13. Haval Jolion — 835
  14. Nissan Magnite — 783
  15. Chery Tiggo 4 Pro — 771
  16. Renault Kwid — 753
  17. Mahindra Scorpio Pik-Up — 662
  18. Kia Sonet — 558
  19. Renault Kiger — 520
  20. Toyota Corolla Quest — 513
  21. Suzuki Baleno — 502
  22. Hyundai Venue — 495
  23. Volkswagen T-Cross — 494
  24. Suzuki Ertiga — 446
  25. GWM P-Series — 430
  26. Suzuki S-Presso — 429
  27. Nissan Navara — 417
  28. Renault Triber — 402
  29. Haval H6 — 385
  30. Suzuki Grand Vitara — 360
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