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Are you driving one of SA’s best-selling cars? Here’s how the top 10 performed in 2016

2017-01-16 11:04

Charlen Raymond

TOP OF THE CLASS: The Toyota Hilux, VW Polo Vivo, Ford Mustang, and BMW X5 were SA's best-selling vehicles. Image: Wheels24

Cape Town - December 2016 saw some of the lowest new vehicle sales figures of the past year and it highlighted what a trying twelve months it's been.

Sales are so poor, in fact, that the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) said it was "progressively under pressure".

Naamsa said: "Overall, 2016 turned out to be another extremely difficult year for the South African automotive industry with domestic new vehicle sales progressively under pressure, particularly at dealer level, despite attractive sales incentives."

Big sales figures

When the total sales for 2016 were tallied, a total 547 442 of new vehicles were sold. This includes all sectors: passenger cars, light commercial vehicles (LCV), medium commercial vehicles (MCV), and heavy trucks and buses.

The sectors we are interested in - passenger cars and LCV - sold 361 273 and 159 128 vehicles, respectively.

READ: SA car sales to 'remain flat' in 2017 - Naamsa

However, though exceeding the half-million mark for total sales is commendable, fewer vehicles were sold last year than 2015's 617 648. That is a difference of -11.4%.

Throughout 2016, Wheels24 has monitored sales figures and grouped them into four categories: passenger cars, bakkies, sports cars, and luxury SUVs. We've listed the top 10 sales figures by month. See December 2016's sales below: 

READ: SA's top-selling cars: Polo Vivo still on top

READ: SA's best-selling bakkies: Toyota Hilux ends year on top

READ: Luxury SUVs in SA: BMW X5 rules the roost

READ: SA's top-selling sports cars: Mustang on top during festive season

Though the top 10 changed monthly, below are the accumulative sales figures of the four categories. Check out the interactive charts for each month of 2016 below.

1. Passenger cars in 2016

Volkswagen Polo Vivo was the best-selling passenger car for 2016, selling a massive 28 830 units. The Vivo's big brother, the Polo, sold the second most cars (23 279).

Toyota is placed third and fourth with its Corolla/Auris/Quest (17 499) and Etios hatchback (12 768).

The Ford Fiesta and Ford EcoSport were fifth and sixth respectively on 12 204 and 11 442 units. BMW's 3-Series was eighth (6680 units) and the Renault Sandero ninth on 5861.

The second-generation Toyota Fortuner went on sale in April and was an immediate success. The previous model was on-sale for the preceding months, but even if those months are excluded, it would not change the big SUV's position as the seventh best-selling passenger car for 2016. Total sales for the Fortuner is 11 060 units. 

Ford's Figo was SA's tenth best-selling passenger car (5480), but just like the Fortuner, it's second-generation also went on sale in 2016.

Accumulative top 10 total: 135 103 units

2. Bakkies in 2016

Despite the Ford Ranger topping the sales charts at the end of a few months in 2016, the Toyota Hilux was the year's best-selling vehicle with 35 428 units. Not only was the Hilux the best-selling bakkie, it was also the single biggest-selling vehicle overall!

The Ranger was the next best bakkie on 32 468 units, as well as SA's second best-selling vehicle.

The Nissan's half-tonner, NP200, is third in the bakkie race with 12 616, just edging out the two contenders from General Motors - the Isuzu KB and Chevrolet Ute - on 12 421 and 12 252, respectively. The Nissan Hardbody sold 9953 units in sixth place.

The Toyota Land Cruiser was seventh on 3709 units, the Volkswagen Amarok eighth (3593 units), followed by the Mahindra's Scorpio and Bolero on 951 and 889 units.

Accumulative top 10 total: 124 280

3. Luxury SUVs in 2016

BMW's X5 was undoubtedly the top-selling luxury SUV of 2016. Its sales figure of 1579 units overpowers that of the second-placed Toyota Prado's 1321. The Range rover/Range Rover Sport is third with a whopping 1205 units. 

The Toyota Land Cruiser 200 was fourth on 1077.

Jeep's Grand Cherokee placed fifth with 744 units finding new owners, the Porsche Cayenne sixth (576 units), Audi's Q7 seventh on 547, the Volvo XC90 eighth (473), and the BMW X6 sold the ninth most units on 409.

The big surprise of the year, however, is Jaguar's F-Pace. The big cat only went on sale in May, but sold enough units (357) since then to make the cut as the tenth best-seller.

READ: How the F-Pace changed Jaguar's image in SA

Just for interest: Between May and December the F-Pace averaged 45 units per month. That puts it on par with the Cayenne over the same period. Knowing that the F-Pace will definitely be sales de force in 2017, could it perhaps make this list's top six? Or even the top five...?

Accumulative top 10 total: 8288

4. Sports cars in 2016

Despite only going on sale in February, the Ford Mustang was 2016's top-selling sports car. Which is a bit unsurprising really, seeing that the most famous pony in the world is the best-selling muscle car of all time! Ford sold an astonishing 860 'Stangs last year.

Porsche took silver and bronze in this category, with its Cayman/Boxster and 911 finding 300 and 296 owners. The Cayman/Boxster's next generation, the 718, was launched late in 2016.

Jaguar's evocative F-Type - in fourth place - found 148, the BMW i8 (fifth) sold 59 units, Nissan's GT-R 57 for a sixth-place finish. The GT-R was also heavily revised and updated during 2016.

Ferrari had a stellar year with its two 488 derivatives. The GTB hardtop found 48 new owners and the Spider convertible 24. Both cars finished in seventh and ninth places, respectively.

Audi's R8 (eighth) was also replaced midway through the year and sold a total of 36 units, and the Alfa Romeo 4C sold 23 in tenth position.

Accumulative top 10 total: 1851


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