For the 5th year in a row New Zealand’s new car registrations hit an all-time high in 2018. All in all, 161,770 new vehicles were registered for our roads, an increase of 1,646 vehicles over 2017. To put that in perspective, it’s almost twice as many vehicles as the 84,640 that were registered in 2011 when we were dealing with the global financial crisis.
Toyota was New Zealand’s preferred brand, followed by Ford, Holden, Mitsubishi and Mazda respectively rounding out the top five manufacturers. Toyota made up 20% of all registrations with 32,360, despite their change to Toyota Driveaway Price (TDP) on the first of April.
Ford Ranger was the top selling vehicle for 2018. HiLux was second to Ranger then followed by Corolla, RAV4 and Triton rounding out the top five. So the New Zealand love affair for Utes continues. Interestingly only one SUV has made the top five considering SUV’s overall market share of sales matched that of LCV’s (Light Commercial Vehicles). The reason behind this could be that virtually all manufacturers now have an SUV to offer the market whereas LCV manufacturers are more limited.
The top news story of 2018 was the stink bugs causing all sorts of issues. This meant some ships had to return to their original ports to be fumigated causing considerable delivery delays. Unfortunately, this is still an ongoing issue with industry and government working to find a suitable solution.
Toyota’s change to TDP pricing caused lots of talk in the market. Toyota still came out on top with more sales than their peers, selling more cars than they did in 2017, however rentals made up a large proportion of their total sales.
More new EV models launched to our market in 2018 with the first EV Van from LDV making an appearance. Total EV sales were around 2,150 or 1.3% of the total NZ market. Most manufacturers tell us that they will have an EV in the NZ market within the next 3 years. Range continues to improve with the Hyundai Kona getting around 400km per charge, however pricing is still not comparable with internal combustion engines even when you add fuel savings. ORIX’s new programme ORIX NZ EVi should help businesses in overcoming these issues.
The prediction for 2019 is that we will see a softening in the market, which leads to questions around where we will see the market end up; will Toyota remain in top position? Will we see a continued reliance on rental registrations? Will the LCV love affair end? ORIX NZ intends to be at the forefront of the industry in advice, opinion and new initiatives.