Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/05/2012 -- Australian new vehicle sales for 2011 stood at a total of 1,008,437 units, down by 2.6% year on year (y-oy), according to data released by Australia's Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), a figure very much in line with BMI's own forecast of 1,004,885 sales for the year. Looking forward, the FCAI remains upbeat on the outlook for the Australian auto industry in 2012, with the proviso that there remains uncertainty over the impact of the introduction of carbon pricing in July on auto demand over H212. This is a view BMI shares.
Toyota Motor remained the best-selling brand in Australia in 2011, selling 181,624 vehicles for a market share of 18%. However, its overall sales figures were down by 15.4% on its 2010 performance. In second place is GM Holden (126,095 vehicles, 12.5% share) and then Ford Motor (91,243 vehicles, 9% share). Both Holden and Ford also saw total sales fall y-o-y.
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In fourth place was Mazda, which saw a 4.2% increase in the number of vehicles it sold within Australia, to reach 88,333 units. Mazda now also boasts the country's best-selling model, with the Mazda3 selling 41,429 units in 2011, up by 6.2% y-o-y, and displacing long-time top seller, the Holden Commodore. Hyundai rounded out the top five, increasing annual sales by 8.7%, to reach 87,008 units sold.
Beyond 2011, we remain confident that the Australian market can continue to show positive growth, currently targeting average annual growth of around 4% per annum over the remainder of our newly extended forecast period to 2016. This should take annual sales to the 1.24mn unit mark.
On the production side, output stood at 219,376 units for the full year, down by 8.4% y-o-y. Over 2011, Australian production was adversely affected first by the severe flooding that hit Australia during Q111 and then by the disruption to supplies at Japanese automakers resulting from the devastating March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Further flooding in Thailand over Q411 impacted on the availability of parts across the Asian region, with a strong Australian dollar also continuing to weigh on the competitiveness of Australian automotive exports at the present time.
Moving forward, the outlook for the production side of the auto industry within Australia remains somewhat clouded. On the positive side, Toyota Motor has recently restated its commitment to maintaining a local production base, with Ford also committing to the country beyond 2014, when it launches new generation Falcon and Territory models. The main uncertainty surrounds the future plans of Holden, which has been suffering as Australians turn away from larger sedan models, although its compact Cruze model has been proving popular, becoming the fifth most popular car sold in the country over 2011.
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