VFACTS December 2022: Australia’s most popular new cars as picked by private buyers

VFACTS December 2022: Australia's most popular new cars as picked by private buyers

The top of the Australian new car sales chart is dominated by fleet vehicles. But what are the favorites when it comes to private buyers?

Australians indulged in a record number of SUVs – and kept the humble hatchback alive last year – according to exclusive data revealing the preferred choice among private buyers.

The top of the Australian new car sales chart has been dominated by Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger for the past seven years.

However, an exclusive breakdown of 2022 new car sales data has revealed that the market leaders’ popularity has been propelled by government and commercial fleets, mining companies and dealerships.

When it comes to buyers putting their hands in their pockets to spend money on a new car, the sales charts flip.

The Mazda CX-5, Toyota RAV4 and MG ZS – all mid-size SUVs – are the top three choices when it comes to private buyers when removing rental and commercial fleet sales.

Perhaps the biggest surprise was the appearance of two hatchbacks in the top 10, with the Hyundai i30 ranking as the fourth most popular choice among private buyers last year, ahead of the MG3 in seventh.

In fact, Hyundai and MG hatches have even outperformed the Toyota Corolla, which ended up just outside the top 10 of the private buyers’ list.

The other surprise: The Tesla Model 3 electric car was the 14th most popular car among private buyers last year – outselling the Mitsubishi ASX SUV, Mazda3 Hatch and compact Kia Cerato despite costing about twice as much as the next vehicles it oversold.

The top 20 list of new passenger cars sold in Australia in 2022 is below. The data excludes sales to fleets, government agencies and rental car operators.

The most popular cars and SUVs chosen by private buyers in Australia in 2022

  • Mazda CX-5 – 20,274
  • Toyota RAV4 – 18.307
  • MG ZS – 17.805
  • Hyundai i30 – 16,119
  • Hyundai Tucson – 12,621
  • Kia Sportage – 12.415
  • MG3 hatch – 11.139
  • Mazda CX-30 – 11,132
  • Toyota Prado – 11,082
  • Mitsubishi Outlander – 10,746
  • Toyota Corolla – 10,503
  • Mazda CX-3 – 9483
  • Hyundai Kona-8869
  • Tesla Model 3 – 8680
  • Mitsubishi ASX-8398
  • Mazda3 – 7914
  • Kia Cerato-7868
  • Subaru Forester – 7868
  • Kia Seltos – 7562
  • Subaru XV-7455

Source: Federal Chamber of the Automotive Industry, data center Drive.com.au.

Joshua Dowling has been a motoring journalist for over 20 years, most of his time working for The Sydney Morning Herald (as motor editor and one of the early members of the Drive team) and News Corp Australia. He joined CarAdvice / Drive in 2018 and has been a World Car of the Year judge for more than 10 years.

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