Hyundai in the heavy-duty fold as truck sales idle along

Hino and Fuso see some consolidation as the Kenworth v. Volvo battle takes new turn

Hyundai in the heavy-duty fold as truck sales idle along
Hyundai's Xcient model that landed in Australia recently


Australian commercial vehicle sales have shown some resilience in August, with Truck Industry Council (TIC) T-Mark figures reaching 3,297, slightly above July’s 3,194.

This tally is, however, well down on last August’s bumper 3,845, and veering much closer to 2017’s 3,266 total.

These numbers are mostly propped up by van sales, as the only truck segment showing any month-on-month improvement was medium-duty.

Overall sales now sit at 25,380 year-to-date, still a solid medium between 2018’s 27,159 and 2017’s 23,008.

While not enough to dent the overall leadership rankings, Hino and Fuso did the most to consolidate second and third spot in all segments, with 480 and 280 sales in August respectively, up on 457 and 261 in July, gaining some ground on perennial leader Isuzu (down MOM from 772 to 742).

In fact, to see any change in overall rankings, one would have to go all the way down to Freightliner jumping above Western Star for 23rd spot in the market.


Most eyes will gravitate here to view the progress of the hotly contested battle between Kenworth and Volvo, which actually glosses over the general coolness of this segment’s overall performance.

Heavy-duty sales fell back to three figures (986) for the first time since February, a MOM decrease of 49 on July’s 1,035.

This is also well down on August 2018’s 1,257, and even almost 100 less than August 2017’s figure of 1,083.

YTD data doesn’t look so bad, yet, with 8,443 sales in 2019 closer to 2018 levels (9,165) than 2017 (7,123).

The aforementioned battle for heavy-duty supremacy did take another fascinating step in August, with Volvo reigning supreme, 180 to 170.

See how the numbers stacked up in July, here

It solidifies the momentum shift for the Swede, taking top spot in three of the past four months – coinciding with the release of its XXL cab – after Kenworth led for the first four consecutive months of 2019.   

Kenworth still leads YTD, though that figure now reduces to 53.

MOM dips were felt across the board for most makers, with only Isuzu experiencing a notable gain (97 to 115), offsetting its medium and light-duty decreases.

Mercedes-Benz also rose from 65 to 77, as did Fuso, 22 to 34.

Meanwhile, it was a welcome presence in this segment for Hyundai, selling its first two heavy-duty units for the year after unveiling its Xcient model here three years ago.


Medium-duty was the only segment that enjoyed a MOM rise, with the final figure of 644 ever so slightly above July’s 632, but a more positive outlook when compared with 2018 and 2017.

The August numbers take YTD sales above the 5,000 mark (5,051), a middle ground between 2018 (5,431) and 2017 (4,583).

As previously noted, Isuzu dipped in the medium (and light) segments, losing some ground to Hino and Fuso.

Its 246 was down 17 on July, while Hino’s 212 was up 23 for the corresponding period.

Fuso’s 91 was also an improvement on last month’s 72, while MAN eased from 77 to 52.


Light duty sales reached 1,029 for the month, five less than last month, now sitting at 7,581 for the year.

The malaise continues, as this figure is well below last August’s 1,154 (8,370 YTD), and also less than 2017’s 1,051 (and just tracking above that year’s 7,441 YTD).

Once more, Hino (219 to 229) was the only top-three maker to see a MOM rise, with Isuzu (412 to 381) and Fuso (167 to 155) seeing decreases.

The big light-duty mover was Iveco, up from 51 to 86, while Fiat also had a bump from 60 to 73.


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