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SA vehicle sales: Yaris challenges Polo in budget car stakes

2019-07-26 14:00

Image: Charlen Raymond

The iconic Volkswagen Polo remains the budget car of choice for South African motorists. However, the Toyota Yaris is in hot pursuit of this title!

This much has emerged from an analysis of search data on AutoTrader over the period 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2019. Given that AutoTrader is South Africa’s most visited motoring marketplace, its search data is widely acknowledged as an accurate barometer of consumer likes and dislikes.

According to AutoTrader CEO George Mienie, it will be hard for the Yaris to unseat the Polo: "The Polo is an automotive icon, which enjoys legendary status in the local market. It offers Golf-like ride quality, exemplary styling in and out and an attractive price tag; these traits are much appreciated by discerning motorists."

Having said this, the Yaris has leapt to second position (it did not feature on the 2018 top 10 list*).



Mienie says that the launch of a new Yaris last year would have propelled interest in the vehicle.

"The Yaris has enjoyed strong sales since being launched here in 2005. However, the launch of the all-new Yaris, which is bigger and bolder than the previous model, has certainly seen interest in this compact city hatchback rise," he notes.

In third spot is the Hyundai i10. It has dropped down one position, from its number two spot in 2018. Occupying fourth spot is the Kia Picanto, which came third last year.

Mienie notes that there is an ongoing popularity of these two Korean cars which is a testament to the fact that Korean vehicles are associated with quality. It was an all-Korean top three when JD Power announced the results of its Initial Quality Survey earlier this year. Genesis, Hyundai’s luxury brand, came first, followed by Kia and Hyundai.

The Toyota Etios is in fifth place for the second year in a row. The Ford Figo came sixth (it was fourth in 2018), followed by the Suzuki Swift (which has dropped one spot, from sixth in 2018 to seventh in 2019).

The Datsun Go, Renault Kwid and Honda Brio – in eighth, ninth and 10th position, respectively, round off the top 10. This is a fairly similar result to 2018, when the Honda Brio came eighth, the Renault Kwid came ninth and the Datsun Go came 10th.

Most searched for budget cars**  

1 VW Polo
2 Toyota Yaris
3 Hyundai i10
4 Kia Picanto
5 Toyota Etios
6 Ford Figo
7 Suzuki Swift
8 Datsun Go
9 Renault Kwid
10 Honda Brio

*Most searched for budget cars 2018 on AutoTrader, April to December 2018. 
**Search data on AutoTrader from 1 January 2019 to 30 June 2019.

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