A HEAVY sales slump in the Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) segment was recorded in October 2019, according to the latest VFACTs report released by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI). Compared to October 2018, a total of 2122 fewer LCV sales were recorded last month - a staggering sales decline of 11 per cent.

Tony Weber, the chief executive of the FCAI, said there’s no single reason for the drastic drop. “While the drought and other domestic conditions are impacting the market, our key concern is the effect over-regulation of the financial sector is having on new vehicle sales,” he said. “The FCAI and our members have been concerned about the risk-averse approach to lending in Australia for some time and see improved access to finance as a key to driving economic growth in 2020.”

The decline in overall sales (-8.0 per cent) can also be seen across all buyer types: private sales are down 5.2 per cent compared to October 2018; business sales are down 8.2 per cent; and government sales are down 7.3 per cent.

Sales of the Ford Ranger 4x2/4x4 and Toyota Hilux 4x2/4x4 - the two best-selling vehicles on the overall charts - reflect this trend, with the Ranger recording a year-to-date sales difference of -20.1 per cent and the Hilux showing a -10.0 per cent drop.

On the YTD 4x4 sales charts, the Ranger and Hilux remain the most sought-after vehicles with 30,867 and 30,186 sales respectively - the next best is the Triton, some 12,446 units shy of the Hilux.