In a remarkable shift in Australia's automotive landscape, the Ford Ranger has clinched the title of the nation’s best-selling vehicle in 2023, ending the Toyota HiLux's seven-year stronghold. This achievement marks a historic moment for Ford, as it's the first time in 28 years that a Ford model has led the Australian market.
The battle for supremacy saw the Ranger amass a total of 63,356 sales in 2023, demonstrating a significant 33% increase compared to the previous year. The sales comprised 5,095 4x2 and 58,261 4x4 variants, showcasing the model's versatility and wide appeal. The increase in the 4x4 segment, in particular, was notable at 35.1%.
Toyota, while still performing robustly with the HiLux, experienced a 5% dip in sales, totaling 61,111 units. The brand saw a rise in 4x4 deliveries, but this was not sufficient to counterbalance the 29% decrease in the 4x2 sector.
This change at the top disrupts the long-standing dominance of Toyota HiLux, a testament to the changing preferences of Australian consumers and the dynamic nature of the automotive industry.
Ford's success can be attributed to its focus on the lucrative 4x4 segment, where it offers high-end variants like the Raptor and Platinum. These models offer features and capabilities that are yet unmatched by Toyota, giving Ford a competitive edge.
The overall market performance in Australia was record-breaking, with 1,216,780 vehicles delivered, surpassing the previous record set in 2017. Ford, as a brand, solidified its position as the third best-selling in the country, with a total of 87,800 vehicles sold in 2023, up by 31.8% from 2022.
Toyota, despite the setback with the HiLux, continued to lead the market overall, with a total of 215,240 vehicles sold in 2023, more than double that of its nearest competitor, Mazda.
Both Ford and Toyota faced supply challenges throughout the year, with Ford taking the innovative step of leasing its own vehicle carrier ship, Grand Quest, to expedite deliveries of Rangers and Everests to Australia.
This significant development in the Australian automotive sector highlights the competitive nature of the market and the ever-evolving preferences of consumers. Ford's triumph with the Ranger not only marks a new chapter for the company but also signals a potential shift in market dynamics in the years to come.
Let us know your thoughts on this latest development in the automotive industry. Do you think Ford can maintain its lead in the coming years, or will Toyota make a strong comeback? Share your views and join the conversation.
Matt Brand, the esteemed car critic from Car Sauce, offers unparalleled expertise on all things automotive. From new car releases to pre-owned options, he provides in-depth analysis and honest evaluations to guide readers through the car-buying process. Join us as he delves into the exciting world of motoring.