New truck sales have slowed in the second half of the year but still remain above 2017, the year before 2018’s record result


In November 2016, a tally of 3,070 tipped the yearly figure over the 32,000 mark and annual records for the decade were being set. The comparable numbers three years on are still slightly better, with 3,080 (only a dip of two on October) taking the year to 34,712 deliveries.

Context is everything, however, and the enthusiasm of recent times, especially during 2018’s peak (38,173), has eroded. While overall still better than 2017 (33,352), each segment continues to track below that year’s latter months’ figures as this calendar year draws to a close.

The results reflect the recent comments by MaxiTrans chair Robert Wylie on the state of the market in his recent address to shareholders. “The Australian [trailer] fleet continues to age. This time last year we thought that this trend was about to reverse, however, that has not eventuated.

“Overall we put the market conditions down to a lack of confidence in the economy and our customers – particularly the smaller ones – are not convinced that low interest rates or tax incentives are initiatives that will encourage investment.”


Heavy-duty sales fell marginally from 1,079 to 1,031 but a recent flurry of publicised operator fleet enhancements suggests there’s still an appetite in the market for this segment.

Despite this, numbers are well down on last year’s 1,399 and 2017’s 1,302.

Kenworth consolidated its spot at the top, beating out Volvo 211 to 196 to extend its yearly lead to 60 (2,133 vs. 2,063), all but cementing its heavy-duty crown for 2019.

Volvo’s tally, nevertheless, is cause for optimism, as it shows progress on 2018’s YTD tally of 1,997 and 2017’s 1,649.

In a milestone for fellow Swede, Scania, it hit four figures (1,044), well ahead of the past two years’ tallies, which were both in the 800s.

A statistical quirk sees Mack, Mercedes-Benz and Hino all record 57 this month.

UD will be buoyed by its massive Linfox order, however, those numbers haven’t translated yet, recording 43 deliveries for the month.


While the medium-duty sector was recording some YOY gains around the middle of 2019, that momentum has hit a wall. The final tally was 584, well down on 710 and 744 in 2018 and 2017 respectively, and even falls below November 2016’s 621, when the sales push was really building.

Individually, Isuzu stamped its authority after Hino was one order away (211 vs. 210) from pipping it to the top of the sector in October.

A strong MOM gain takes it to 250, while Hino eases to 173 – albeit the latter is still set to surpass its overall medium-duty sales of 2018.


Light-duty showed the earliest signs of softness in 2019 and its slide continues with a third consecutive month in triple figures. The final figure of 946 stays well below 1,153 and 1,073 in 2018 and 2017 respectively.

Isuzu remains comfortably on top here, more than 100 ahead of nearest rival Hino (340 vs. 236) in November.

Individual wins come at the smaller end of the market, with Renault (267 vs. 244), Hyundai (94 vs. 83) and Ford (93 vs. 76) seeing gains, and Iveco (974 vs. 1,016) remaining relatively flat.


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