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The Australian market for new vehicles slowed in June compared with the same period in 2017, with the total market down 2.9 per cent, according to the latest data released today by the motor industry’s official statistical service, VFACTS.

Notably, the three top-selling vehicles during June were light commercial vehicles, with the Toyota Hilux leading the market ahead of the Ford Ranger and the Mitsubishi Triton third.

Total sales last month were 130,300, compared with last year’s June record of 134,171.

The year-to-date 2018 results show the total vehicle market still running at 1 per cent higher than the first six months of 2017.

Passenger car sales showed a significant decline in June, falling 17.9 per cent compared with the same month in 2017. Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) continued to strengthen last month, sales increasing by 9.3 per cent over June 2017. Light commercials were relatively steady in June with a 0.3 per cent increase over June 2017.

SUVs held a dominant 43.1 per cent share of the June market, with the passenger car share at 31.9 per cent, and light commercials at 21.8 per cent.

Among the passenger cars, the micro segment was the only one to show an increase, jumping by 58.9 per cent albeit off relatively low volumes.

The small and medium segments were the main contributors to the growth in SUV sales during June. Small SUVs rose 32.2 per cent, and medium SUVs by 7.3 per cent.

Year to date, light commercial sales in general, like the SUVs, continue to show growth and now account for 20.3 per cent of the total market, up from 19.8 per cent for the corresponding six months of 2017.

There were declines in purchasing across all buyer types in June (other than rental), with private sales down 7.8 per cent, business down 1.5 per cent and government down 5.1 per cent. On a year-to-date basis, business and rental sales are still running ahead of last year.

In sales across the states and territories, only Tasmania showed an increase in June compared with the same month last year. Tasmania’s sales rose 3.0 per cent. Sales across NSW fell 4.5 per cent, Victoria was down 1.5 per cent, Queensland dropped 1.7 per cent, as did the Northern Territory (-3.5%), Western Australia (-0.8%), South Australia (-6.7%) and the ACT (-10%).

The five top-sellers for June were the Toyota Hilux (5,787), Ford Ranger (4,768), Mitsubishi Triton (3,919), Toyota Corolla (3,780) and Hyundai i30 (3,547).

Toyota led the market with a 17.8 per cent share, followed by Mazda (9.6%), Hyundai (8.0%), Mitsubishi (7.9%), and Ford (5.7%).