The Australian truck market has come ever so slightly off the boil in July with sales slowing compared with the same month in 2022.
Nevertheless, despite the dip the year to date figures are still strong with the 2023 tally to the end of July now more than 3000 trucks ahead of where it was at this point last year, with 27576 units sold so far, compared with 24381 till the end of July 2022.
Overall Light Duty for the month was down 313 on its July 2022 result, Medium duty was 30 trucks down on its July 22 sales numbers, while Heavy Duty was the only sector to buck the trend with 1105 sales in July this year, 38 ahead of the heavy sales for July last year.
Isuzu still sold more than 1000 trucks in July to top the sales charts with 1009 trucks and 31.9 per cent share for the month, down 81 units on the same month last year, but well ahead of second place Hino which finished with 325 units and 10.2 per cent of the overall market. That represents a 30 per cent drop for Hino, which is believed to be largely as a result of supply issues. The result saw Hino scrape into second place overall, just 11 units ahead of rival Fuso, with 314 trucks and 9.9 per cent share for the month.
The battle for the coveted heavy duty market supremacy continues to be a hard fought contest between Volvo and long-time leader Kenworth. After several months heading Kenworth, Volvo slipped behind its Paccar rival in July, with Kenworth selling 217 trucks, all of them heavy-duty, while Volvo sold 176 heavies and four medium duty models.
Despite this Volvo still leads Kenworth for overall sales for the year to date with the Swedish truck maker having sold 1994 trucks to the end of July, compared to Kenworth’s 1976 sales overall. In heavy duty the two brands are line ball with Kenworth leading Volvo by just two trucks at the end of July.
Mercedes-Benz was sixth in the market overall with 104 truck sales in July, including its light duty Sprinter cab chassis models as well as medium and heavy offerings, while Iveco was seventh overall on 88, Scania on 81 UD with 80 and DAF rounding out the top on 73 just ahead of Mack with 71.
While the battle in heavy duty had most focus on the Kenworth -Volvo contest, Isuzu actually had a stellar result in the heavy sector with 170 trucks in July, just six units behind Volvo and more than double that of Scania with its 81 heavies. Behind those brands came a gaggle with Mercedes next on 73 heavies, equal with DAF, Mack on 71, UD on 67, Fuso 64, while MAN’s 28, Freightliner with 26 and Hino on 25, would have been disappointing results for those three brands.
Iveco only managed to move 19 heavy duty in July, Dennis Eagle on 10 trucks and Western Star on five trucks rounded out all the sales in the sector.
Isuzu grabbed a whopping 58.8 per cent of the medium duty market with 331 sales in July to head Hino by 208 trucks in the sector. Hino’s 123 medium duty sales saw it take 21.8 per cent of the sector, while Fuso had a disappointing tally of 66 medium duty sales, giving it 11.7 per cent of the category. Behind the top three Japanese brands the pickings were meagre with UD next best with 13 medium sales, Iveco with eight trucks, Hyundai with seven, MAN five and Volvo four.
In Light duty Isuzu topped the category, with daylight second. The market leader moved 508 light duty models in July for 47.7 per cent of the sector, 324 ahead of Fuso with 184 light duty sales and 17.3 per cent of the category, topping rival Hino which could only manage 177 light duty sales and 16.6 per cent share.
Fiat’s Ducato light duty cab chassis models had a strong month to be fourth in light duty with 73 sales, just ahead of Iveco Daily with 61, Mercedes with 25 Sprinters, new comer Foton Mobility with 17 electric light duty models and Hyundai with 12 Mightys for the month.
In Van sales Mercedes reigned supreme with 231 Sprinter sales in July for 51.4 per cent share of he sector, well ahead of Renault with 75 Master sales, Fiat with 61 Ducatos, VW with 45 Crafters, Iveco on 27 Daily vans and Ford with 10 Transits.
It is too early to tell whether the July result is as a result of supply issue problems or it is a hangover from the bumper June sales, or if it is more worringly, the start of a downturn that some have been predicting.