Cheap cars

When it comes to cheap cars, Kiwis are in love with hybrids – NZ Autocar


While the domestic new car world is dominated by utility vehicles and SUVs, things are a little different in the used market.

For most of 2021 (and a practical portion of 2020), the Toyota Aqua hybrid has been New Zealand’s most popular Japanese import. This continued into August, with 599 Aquas registered in a month affected by the Covid-19 level 4 lockdown.

The Aqua is the Japanese market version of the Prius C formerly offered locally, and recently discontinued by Toyota New Zealand. The Aquas have grown in popularity over the past couple of years, in part thanks to their incredible fuel economy and more vanilla styling compared to their more quirky Prius cousins.

Not to say that the regular Prius isn’t a popular import, however. For the second consecutive month, it was the third most popular import of the month, divided by the Mazda Axela (the Mazda3 in the Japanese market); 337 and 278 of each nameplate registered in August respectively.

The Nissan X-Trail and the Mitsubishi Outlander were the only SUVs to make the top five for August, with the latter tied for fifth with the Volkswagen Golf.

Comparing Aqua records to Ranger records is a generally meaningless, but somewhat interesting exercise.

The Aqua held an overall market share of 8.4 percent in August in the import market segment, while the Ranger’s 671 registrations meant it had an overall market share of around 9.9 percent. in the issues of new vehicles.

Although commercial vehicles dominate new car sales, they represent a small fraction of the import market. Only 360 advertisements were recorded in August; the Toyota Hiace ahead of the Nissan NV350 and the Toyota Dyna.


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