AUTO MARKET WATCH
CES steals Detroit’s shine Protectionism
– the new normal?
NEW YEAR, NEW BRAND
Exciting models set to launch in 2017 as brands target growth.
How inventory levels on carsales impact buyer enquiries
Edition 6 at a glance
MOBILE (SITE & APP)
DE 2,000,000 1,500,000
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06 Winds of change
Market dynamics set to shift as brands tap new models, segments and image in 2017.
in 2017 we can’t 10 Cars wait to drive The motoring.com.au team highlights the cars they can’t wait to drive this year.
Market 16 Auto Landscape
blurred: Is 20 Boundaries CES Las Vegas the new
Get the full picture of where consumers go to buy new cars.
20 new passenger 18 Top vehicles by enquiry Which passenger vehicle generated the most buyer enquiries on carsales in 2016?
awareness: Top 20 new commercial 14 Brand It’s only half the battle 19 vehicles by enquiry Special analysis on how inventory depth on carsales affects brand lead share.
Which commercial vehicle generated the most buyer enquiries on carsales in 2016?
Consumer electronics show steals limelight from traditional motor show season opener.
record surpassed 24 Sales - VFACTS 2016 snapshot New market record and sales champion cements historic year for Australian new car sales.
hottest 26 Australia’s used cars Discover the nation’s most in-demand used cars with our exclusive LiveMarket analysis.
protectionism 27 Will become the new normal?
Trumponomics may pave way for a more protectionist automotive industry.
10 news articles 29 Top of 2016
30 Top 10 reviews of 2016 31 Top 10 videos of 2016
Daniel Ricciardo joins carsales Red Bull Racing F1 star Daniel Ricciardo has been named carsales.com.au’s first global brand ambassador.
Find out more
With great change comes tremendous opportunity Why digitial can help you elevate outcomes. Strap yourself in. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, 2017 shapes to be the biggest for the Australian automotive industry to date, a year of inevitable change that’s coupled with huge opportunity for OEMs and dealers. The ongoing tussle to fill the sales void left by the end of locally manufactured vehicles, will further intensify with new and exciting offerings such as the Kia Stinger and the new Europeansourced Holden Commodore. Some brands will tap segments for growth that once would have seemed unimaginable and unaligned with brand image. Others will invest in new positioning to throw down the gauntlet to established segment leaders. Change in the ownership experience will also continue to accelerate, with new campaigns and incentives to keep owners locked down within the brand family . However, there’s also little doubt that a few big themes of 2016 will continue to generate headlines again this year. You would be a brave person to bet against the continued popularity of SUV and commercial vehicles. Plus we’re tipping that you’ll see more hybrids and electric vehicles driving silently beside you on your daily commutes. Electrification and autonomous technologies may even gain greater recognition in political and legislative arenas. Speaking of politics, definitive policy from the 45th President of the United States of America - in areas such as trade, manufacturing and the environment is one of the great unknowns of 2017 that could have effects on the global automotive industry. The continued strength of digital and online mediums cannot be underestimated. Australian appetites for mobile, online and engaging content show no sign of slowing down. For OEMs and dealers, digital and online present an
array of opportunities to target specific buyer segments, increase advertising returns and minimise wastage. The beauty of digital is that market segments and buyers can be targeted with greater accuracy and accountability - with the end result being more successful and more cost-effective outcomes. Our latest white paper – exploring the success of OEM Certified Pre-Owned programs within the relevant context of carsales – is testament to the effectiveness of a better presented and more engaging product, teamed with leading advertising and targeting capabilities. For dealers, enhanced targeting is translating to buyers sending fewer, yet higher-quality leads. Overall for dealers, carsales is best placed as your total digital partner, with expertise ranging from Search Engine Marketing to Remarketing on other websites. Contact your Performance or Account Manager for more information and the latest in this burgeoning area. To kick-start the year, Auto Market Watch edition 6 delivers a bevy of actionable insights, crystal balling from our expert team and thoughtprovoking analysis. As always, we would love for you to get involved and help shape the next edition. If there’s a topic you would like analysed, simply get in touch . Enjoy edition 6,
Chris Polites Dealer Director carsales.com Ltd
The beauty of digital is that market segments and buyers can be targeted with greater accuracy and accountability.
Discover how CPO programs in Australia are a win-win situation for consumers and OEMs alike.
Click here to read
WHITEPAPER RESEARCH carsales.com.au
The end of Australian manufacturing will accelerate change in the new car space – but so will the lure of new customers, new niches and new models BY MIKE SINCLAIR Australian new car consumers face an embarrassment of riches. With perhaps the largest selection of new car brands of all established marketplaces, there are literally thousands of choices for the local new-car buyer. And while some of those have become default choices for many, in the coming year there will be more than a few cats among the four-wheeled pigeons. There is nothing more constant in today’s new-car marketplace than change. And with the phasing out of local manufacturing occurring in late 2017, the stage is set for even more change than normal. Mainstream brands are either gearing up to hold their ground with a new range of imported models, or conversely preparing to target a new group of customers. At the cut-price and prestige ends alike, it’s never been more hard fought.
Read our review of the Maserati Levante carsales.com.au
The fight for buyers One thing is for certain, the Australian new car marketplace will undergo significant change over the next 18 months to two years. Nameplates that have been part of the local automotive landscape will mean different things to different buyers. Indeed, while some of the badges will remain, the consumers they target will be very different. Much has been written about the likely impact of Chinese brands on the lower end of the marketplace. With some exceptions, Australia has not been high on the export target list for the burgeoning Sino automotive industry.
There is nothing more constant in today’s new-car marketplace than change.
While that won’t change substantially in 2017, there will be new product from existing startups and perhaps the arrival of one or two wellresourced new brands. In the battlefield of the mid-priced cars from Japanese and European marques you can expect more value, more offers, more new launches and cut-throat competition.
brands each face different challenges. Peugeot needs to optimise its model and powertrain offerings, while Citroën must refine a brand identity with which a sustainable number of Aussies can connect to. After years in the wilderness, Renault on the other hand, is poised to generate significant growth and perhaps achieve close to mainstream recognition. But to do so it must find a way for the Megane small car to resonate with a wider cross-section of buyers, maintain or improve Clio’s sales in the troubled light car segment and hardest of all, win new customers with Koleos in the same segment as the above-mentioned CX-5. Oh, and it has to convince head office that the much previewed Alaskan crew-cab ute is a nonnegotiable must have for Australia. It’s hard to decide which of the Gallic brands face the toughest battle. Some brands like Mercedes-Benz are in rude good health.
Mazda CX-5: The second generation of Australia’s favourite SUV debuted in LA
There are a number of brands that for different reasons need to kick some goals in 2017. Volkswagen must put behind it its #Dieselgate related brand challenges and banish for good any sales side effects. There’s a new generation of Golf arriving, with hybrid and perhaps electric options, that’s sure to grab some headlines. Mazda needs to cement an all-new CX-5 in perhaps perhaps the most competitive segment in the local marketplace—medium SUV. And at the same time, it needs to continue to generate strong sales from what are now aging Mazda 2, 3 and 6 models. There is movement right across the brand spectrum. By way of example, the three French
If you think a Maserati SUV is out there, consider the fact that Lamborghini is to get in on the act too. 7
It seems the three-pointed star can’t put a foot wrong Down Under. And with significant model renewal continuing in the second half of 2017 and accelerating in 2018, Benz’s stranglehold on the number one spot at the most profitable end of the current market is unlikely to loosen. It’s even gearing up to launch a ute – or is that a pickup? While Renault is yet to confirm its gentrified light commercial is definitely coming Down Under, Mercedes head office says Australia is one of the very reasons it’s building the X-Class. The delicious irony? Both vehicles share the same platform and – engines aside – mechanicals. But Mercedes-Benz won’t be the only brand launching new cars into what for them is uncharted territory.
Underlining the Sport in SUV Just a couple of years ago the thought of a Maserati SUV was preposterous. Yet in the last few weeks the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles owned Italian icon has launched a large turbo-diesel SUV into the local market. Levante is in effect another entry-level model for a brand that was once considered in almost the same territory as stablemate Ferrari. Priced to compete against upper middle level
variants of Porsche’s Cayenne, Levante has already attracted significant orders and, importantly for the brand, a high proportion of conquest sales. And if you think a Maserati SUV is out there, consider the fact that Lamborghini is to get in on the act too. Does Porsche have a counter for these Italian poachers? With the German sports-car marque now cemented as a provider of high-end SUVs, it is set to surprise consumers with another fork in the road. Come Geneva motor show in early March, Porsche is tipped to debut its first station wagon. No, that’s not a misprint... Built on the same platform and sharing mechanicals as Porsche’s Panamera sedan/ liftback, the Sport Turismo may well get the tag ‘shooting brake’. But make no mistake, it’s a wagon. Will it work? It wasn’t that long ago that pundits predicted an SUV would be the end of Porsche’s status as the world’s most profitable car brand.
opinions. Underneath the car is a new platform that promises more engaging dynamics and performance potential that to date, Lexus has promised but not delivered. A powered-up V8 petrol engine will provide true sports-car performance, while a hybrid option should deliver some respite from the green corner. Lexus is yet to talk dollars in detail. It won’t be cheap but again, it’s not a car that will allow its occupants to go quietly into the night. Love or hate the styling, the LC makes a statement.
Stinger to Strike But perhaps the most interesting new segment, new car double act of 2017 is Kia’s Stinger sports sedan. Like the Porsche Panamera, it is in fact a five-door, but the lines are sedan-like and the car at which it is targeted is a traditional sedan. Stinger may not have come into being to target the outgoing VF Commodore, but with its blend of rear-wheel drive architecture, performance and
It will be a brave correspondent who bets against the success of the Sport Turismo in a marketplace where it’s better to be overdone and overlooked.
A Kia could very well be the new poster child for affordable performance.
Also at the extreme end of the styling spectrum, Lexus’ new LC500 sports coupe will polarise
The Kia Stinger GT could be a game changer
In the battlefield of the mid-priced cars from Japanese and European marques you can expect more value, more offers, more new launches and cut-throat competition. let’s face it, arrival timing, it cannot be anything but. Kia anticipates the Stinger and its Stinger GT range-topping twin-turbo V6 variant will go on
sale in around October 2017. Hands up who wants to guess in which month the rear-wheel drive Commodore is axed? Stinger rides on a wheelbase of 2906mm, just 9mm shy of the VF Commodore. At 4831mm overall, the car is a substantial 133mm shorter than the VF but Kia claims its cabin offers room for five. Two versions of the car will be offered Down Under. The 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder with 190kW/353Nm gets a Stinger badge. The 272kW/510Nm blown six adds GT to the nomenclature. The chassis development has been overseen by a former BMW M executive, Albert Bierman. Summary: expect good things! If the response of the readers of carsales’ editorial channel motoring.com.au is anything via which to gauge interest, a Kia could very well be the new poster child for affordable performance. Change is rarely more profound than that...
Mercedes-Benz’ first pick-up ute
First official video: 2018 Holden Commodore
Cars in 2017 we
can’t wait to drive Tech-filled wonders, performance rockets, legendary nameplates and new entrants set to shake up the status quo.
For a start, 2017 looks like being a bumper year for new, high-tech heavy metal—one that will cater for fans of both performance and practicality. Take, for example, Alfa Romeo’s new Giulia sports sedan, which will be topped by the BMW M3-baiting QV twin-turbo. Then there’s Mercedes-AMG’s ballistic new E63 super-sedan and ferocious new GT R super-coupe, both due mid-year. The 2017 supercar launches roll on with a host of other tasty new entries like the MkII Honda NSX, Nissan GT-R NISMO, Aston Martin D11 and Ferrari GTC4 Lusso T. At the other end of the scale, who isn’t keen to thrash the first turbocharged
Honda Civic Type-R to come Down Under, put Land Rover’s radical new Discovery 5 to the test in a gnarly bog hole, or sample a couple of promising new Korean rear-drive sedans in the Genesis G70 and Kia Stinger GT? And let’s not forget that in the final year of home-grown Commodore production, we’ll also see what will be HSV’s finest and fastest model ever—the LS9-powered GTS-R W1 and a trio of MY17 specialeditions based on Holden’s last Australianmade Commodore. So which cars are the crew at motoring.com.au most keen to drive?
A Volvo... Yes, a Volvo I’m interested in whether the Giulia QV will be the real deal or, like the other most recent ‘new’ Alfa Romeo, the 4C, an unbelievably flawed case of the emperor’s new clothes. But the car I’m most keen to drive, or rather be driven in, is a Volvo—an autonomous Volvo to be precise.
Volvo kicks off a medium scale trial of autonomous cars on the streets of Goteborg early in 2017 and I’ve put my hand up to be an early crash test dummy. One hopes it doesn’t come to that.
“Like it or not, auto driving is going to be a huge part of tomorrow’s roads. I want to see how close we are to real world implementation...” —Mike Sinclair, Editor-in-Chief
Holden Magnum The Honda NSX is a dangling carrot— especially after personally snaring what should have been a first Australian drive of the only NSX press car in the country in December, only for it to conk out before I even got going.
the Chevy SS-spec Motorsport Edition and the luxurious Calais-based Director sedans, the one I’m lusting after most is the Magnum ute. So much so, that I’ve got my name on the waitlist.
But in reality the car I most want to drive in 2017 is Holden’s last Australian-made Commodore. Of the three even-morespecial MY17 limited-editions, including
Land Rover Discovery 5 It’s well out of character for me to choose a large SUV, but off the back of a year where I’ve been honing my off-road skills, it makes a lot of sense that Land Rover’s Discovery 5 is on my wishlist.
480kg lighter, equipped with a four cylinder turbo-diesel engine and seven seats as standard.
The Discovery 4 is highly capable, with smart four-wheel-drive technology that impresses at every opportunity... But the next generation promises to be even better and the new car arrives around
Mercedes-AMG GT R In an automotive landscape increasingly dictated by green-savvy technology and stringent emissions regulations, it is refreshing when car makers give us something raw and unadulterated. Mercedes-AMG’s most extreme road car offering to date, the R’s biturbo V8 cranks out 430kW, allowing it to hit 100km/h in just 3.6sec without AWD!
Mercedes’ AMG hotrod division has stripped back the kerb weight, introduced a wider front track and large rear wing for added cornering grip. Sure, alternative propulsion will undoubtedly take another leap forward in 2017, but in the face of all that it’s nice to slip back into something more familiar. Loud, fast, internal combustion...
Porsche Panamera The new car that has piqued my curiosity most is the new Porsche Panamera. I’ve driven the Panamera at both ends of the performance scale—the plug-in hybrid and the GTS—and found Porsche’s big, brash sedan quite appealing, aside from its looks. At the very least this new model addresses the visuals—and promises more.
Colleagues have driven it here and abroad, and the unanimous response has been highly favourable.
ROAD TEST EDITOR
Hyundai i30 N If my drive of Hyundai’s next-generation i30 prototype is anything to go by, the upcoming ‘N’ performance variant should be a cracker. As well as being Hyundai’s first real foray into the hot hatch realm, the i30 N will offer an independent rear-end and turbocharged engine that promise to deliver on both the handling and performance fronts.
Further, the five-door hatch offers decent cargo and passenger space, which could make it an ideal alternative to my currentgen Hyundai i30 Active. I just need to convince the other half...
Genesis G70 The Genesis G70 luxury car is my choice. Why? The Genesis G70 edged ahead on my list because my back hurts and I like a plush ride and lots of creature comforts. Hardly... but, if I imagine an all-new, hightech platform with more techno doodads than the Google R&D centre, propelled by a rip-snorting 270kW/510Nm 3.3-litre turbopetrol V6 that drives the rear wheels, then my giblets become unusually energised.
It’s about the same size as a MercedesAMG C43 but rear-wheel drive instead of AWD, more affordable and potentially sexier. Yep, I’m eager for this one.
Audi A8 A bit like a lamb voting for a roast, I’m looking forward to Audi’s A8. The current E-Class is quite comfortably the market leader in autonomous driving. It can already change lanes to overtake by itself at 180km/h. I’ve done it, and all you have to do is flick the indicator switch, and even that’s just a legal and philosophical nicety. The A8 is promising to lift that to the next level of autonomy. I’ve driven an
A7 prototype on the autobahn outside Ingolstadt. No taxi throttle, no head jerk, real world autobahn smarts, nothing to fault. And the overwhelming feeling from all of this was a remarkable shedding of tension inside the car. It so clearly had it all under control that it was unfathomably relaxing. In a country like Australia, with its distances, speed limits and (over)policing dogma, this is technology that simply can’t come fast enough.
2018 Holden Commodore The first imported Holden Commodore will go on sale in 2018, but we will drive it this year – and I’m looking forward to the experience. Sort of... I’m a big fan of the locally-designed and developed VE/VF Commodores and the dedicated group of engineers, designers and manufacturing people behind them.
We’re hearing that ‘traditional’ Commodore characteristics have been imbued into the new imported Opel Insignia-based 2018 model that offers neither rear-wheel drive nor a V8 engine. Right now, I am a bit dubious that it’s actually achievable, but I also have a lot of respect for the Holden engineering crew who are working on the car.
There will be no shortage of desirable new models rolling into Australian showrooms next year, as you can see from our New Car Calendar
Itâ€™s only half the battle
We uncover that depth of inventory is key to increasing lead share on carsales. The most frequently searched OEMs on carsales are those with the largest brand footprint, and this in turn correlates with the share of leads received.
Chart 1 - Search share to lead share
However, each OEM differs in their ability to convert awareness to leads, with inventory being a significant mitigating factor.
Chart 1 shows the relationship of search share to lead share on carsales. For the majority of OEMs, this correlates closely. Some OEMs however, (highlighted green) are able to convert above their search share by competing on attributes such as price and warranty over branding.
Lead Share (%)
Search and leads â€“ how entwined are they?
7 6 5 4 3 2 1
Contrastingly, prestige OEMs (highlighted red) convert below the average due to having recognisable, aspirational brands at a higher price point.
Search Share (%)
OEMs maintaining a larger selection of stock on site typically receive a larger share of leads.
Source: carsales.com ltd internal data, December 2016. carsales.com.au
Successful OEMs are those which are generating awareness and driving consumers to a breadth of physical stock.
Chart 2 - Inventory share to lead share A similar relationship is shown between inventory share and lead share in Chart 2. OEMs maintaining a larger selection of stock on carsales typically receive a larger share of leads.
10 9 8
Stock depth that meets buyer behaviour
6 5 4 3 2 1 0
As a consumer nears the final phase of their purchase journey, they are often observed to compare multiple listings of the same model within a narrow price and geographic range. OEMs that arenâ€™t able to meet this buying behaviour may lose out to competitors offering greater depth of comparison. When we view all the factors together in Chart 3, inventory and search both contribute to the volume of leads received. Having either one in isolation wonâ€™t maximise opportunity. Successful OEMs are those which are generating awareness and driving consumers to a breadth of physical stock.
Inventory Share (%)
Chart 3 - Search and inventory share to lead share 10
Following these projections, listing additional stock on carsales could lead to thousands of additional buyer enquiries for some OEMs.
Lead Share (%)
Lead Share (%)
Understand where your brand ranks in this analysis.
Inventory Share (%)
Get in touch with us at: email@example.com.
Search Share (%)
Source: carsales.com ltd internal data, December 2016. carsales.com.au
THE AUTO MARKET LANDSCAPE carsales remains Australia’s #1 auto classiﬁed website
AVERAGE UNIQUE AUDIENCE (UNDUPLICATED, ACROSS DEVICES)1 For the October–December period, carsales' 2 million-plus average Unique Audience was more than double each of Gumtree and CarsGuide. Nielsen's Unique Audience metric is the industry currency for unduplicated, cross-device measurement for smartphone, tablet and desktop.
2,500,000 2,000,000 1,500,000 1,000,000 500,000 0
TIME SPENT PER PERSON ON WEBSITE 2 1hr 21mins
9 mins 4 mins
carsales continues to lead the auto website category in this key measurement of audience engagement.
DRIVE CARSGUIDE GUMTREE CARSALES
For the October–December period, the average time spent per person on carsales was more than double that of Gumtree and more than 9x higher than CarsGuide.
BUYER BRAND PREFERENCE3 Consumers prefer carsales for buying a new or used car. Most preferred site for
Most preferred site for
Sources: 1. Nielson Digital Ratings, October–December 2016 average. Gumtree refers speciﬁcally to Gumtree Automotive, not whole site. 2. Nielsen Digital Ratings Monthly, Time Per Person, October–December 2016 average. Gumtree refers speciﬁcally to Gumtree Automotive, not whole site. 3. Nature Research, Brand Health study, October 2016 (n=1,133)
AUSTRALIA’S INSATIABLE APPETITE FOR MOBILE4
average time spent by Australians using the internet via mobile phone
Australians bought something online in the past month
BUYER ENQUIRIES ON CARSALES PER DEVICE5
MOBILE (SITE & APP)
Consumer preference for mobile shows no sign of abating, with more buyers enquiring on carsales stock listings via mobile than desktop in the October–December period.
Year-on-year growth of Australians buying online via their mobile
MOBILE APP TRAFFIC RISES ON CARSALES6
Buyers just can't get enough of mobile. carsales app traﬃc across iPhone and Android rose strongly over the past 12 months.
CARSALES APP WINS GOOGLE RECOGNITION7 Continued investment in the customer mobile experience has resulted in carsales' Android app being recognised by Google as one of the Best Local Apps for 2016.
Best Local App 2016 by Google
4. We Are Social, Digital in 2017 Global Overview, January 2017. 5. carsales internal data, Webtrends, October–December 2016. 6. carsales internal data, Webtrends, December 2015–December 2016. 7. Google Play, January 2017.
Top 20 new passenger vehicles by enquiry
The Mazda3 generated the most buyer enquiries on carsales in 2016, just pipping its rivals the Hyundai i30 and Volkswagen Golf. The Kia Cerato was a big improver over the course of the year.
Dive into the data below, filter by model, make and segment, and discover fluctuations and trends. Top 20 Most Enquired on New Cars in the Passenger Segment Click to Filter by Make
Click to Filter by VFACTS Segment
Top 20 Enquired On Passenger Vehicles 2016 1.0% 0.9% 0.8% 0.7% 3
0.4% GOLF 0.3% 2
0.0% January Colour Legend FORD HOLDEN SPECI...
Data shown is position ranking based on number of enquiries per month, grouped within its VFACTS segment.
Source: carsales internal data, business intelligence, based on enquiries on brand new passenger vehicles in 2016. carsales.com.au
Top 20 new commercial vehicles by enquiry
The popular Ford Ranger dominated the commercial segment, consistently eclipsing rivals such as the Nissan Navara, Isuzu D-Max and Mazda BT-50 to register the most buyer enquiries on carsales in 2016.
Dive into the data below, filter by model, make and segment, and discover fluctuations and trends. Top 20 Most Enquired on New Cars in the Commercial Segment Click to Filter by Make
Click to Filter by VFACTS Segment
Top 20 Enquired On Commercial 2016 3.0%
HILUX DEFENDER January
Colour Legend FORD
Data shown is position ranking based on number of enquiries per month, grouped within its VFACTS segment.
Source: carsales internal data, business intelligence, based on enquiries on brand new commercial vehicles in 2016. carsales.com.au
Boundaries blurred: Is CES Las Vegas the new Detroit? Electronics and auto shows collide in battle for consumer attention and auto industry spending. BY BRUCE NEWTON Automotive past, present and future collided in North America last month. In glitzy and endlessly shallow Las Vegas, the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show—or CES as it is now simply known—got underway. A few days later in frigid Detroit, it was time for Motown’s annual auto show. The contrast between the two could not have been more profound. While CES booms, Detroit declines. Car makers are homing in on the CES as their priorities turn from oil, metal and 0-100 times to infotainment, connectivity and autonomy. They fight for their share of the spotlight with brands from all over the business landscape, from giants like Sony to one-person operations you will probably never hear of.
At CES Chrysler, Hyundai and Toyota announced new electric vehicles with incredible futuristic features. But propulsion systems were rarely mentioned let alone detailed. The emphasis was all about how these vehicles would integrate into – and improve - your life. BMW showed an interior buck with a gesture control display that completely removed buttons from the dashboard. Spectacular, but as some others have already asked, the point is? But it attracted interest both from the attendees and the media, who were there by the thousands, ranging from stylised nightly news anchors, through techies hosting their own livestreams, to motoring journos trying to make sense of the whole mélange and how it all will merge together with their traditional beat.
New execution: Promoted suppliers
Five minutes with any senior car company executive at CES was enough to realise they have a new religion. Autonomy is king and electricity will be its currency.
Endless co-operations, investments and advancements were announced. Once automotive suppliers were kept in the
Who can blame them? They are in the business of selling cars, so if choking traffic means longer commutes then selling autonomy as its productivity and lifestyle boosting upside makes sense. The same applies to the need to reduce emissions and the onrushing arrival of electric vehicles.
The contrast between the two could not have been more profound. While CES booms, Detroit declines.
background and their advances presented as the work of the car company that debuted them. Not at CES. Silicon Valley names are bandied about and promoted as high-profile partners. On the first day Audi announced a deal with Californian graphics processing unit manufacturer Nvidia to have vehicles on the road with artificial intelligence by 2020. A few days later Benz revealed its deal with the same company to do the same thing by 2018.
In Detroit things seemed much dimmer. The show is undoubtedly quieter than it once was. There are fewer brands on display, even fewer presenting new concepts or production cars. As recently as the early 2000s the big three localsâ€”Chrysler, Ford and General Motorsâ€”had their own massive media previews before the show even officially started, where they rolled out the latest crazy concepts and production cars. That probably reached its zenith when thenChrysler executive Wolfgang Bernhard wobbled
Engagement is a major focus of CES.
along the stage on the Viper-powered Tomahawk motorcycle in 2003. None of the American manufacturers had anything like that for us in Detroit; Chrysler didn’t even have a press conference. Their timidity was disappointing, but also the continuation of a decline that has been apparent ever since the GFC, their public excoriation by Washington and GM and Chrysler’s near-death experiences.
Silicon Valley names are bandied about and promoted as high-profile partners.
Instead it was left to the foreigners to steal the show; the Kia Stinger GT, Audi Q8 concept and latest Toyota Camry were the biggest talking points – at least the latter is manufactured in the USA. The corridors were uncrowded and the star cars easy to get at. Detroit had more the ambience of the departed Melbourne or Sydney shows than one staged at the North American home of the global automotive industry.
Toyota Concept-i wants to be your friend
Online fills the void Escalating costs and diminishing returns in a connected world killed our shows off. The same challenges face all motor shows. For car buyers, motor shows aren’t the be all and end all they once were. They can do a lot of that tyre kicking online nowadays. Car companies are also choosing to launch their new vehicles more often at exclusive events to invited audiences rather than fight for their 15 minutes of attention at motor shows. Nor do the big motor shows serve as the same melting pot and meeting place for intersecting industries as CES does.
CES 2017: Autonomous cars the cure for road deaths
Five minutes with any senior car company executive at CES was enough to realise they have a new religion. Autonomy is king and electricity will be its currency. Having said all that, it’s only fair to point out that the Detroit organisers recognised the challenges and staged press events at the show to cover off emerging new automotive technologies. And not all traditional motor shows are struggling; Geneva, Frankfurt, Paris and the Chinese events seem healthy.
There are debates and discussions about Detroit and what to do with it; moving from the chilled depths of winter to summer was one suggestion mooted in the media. Whatever happens, it would be fantastic for it to recapture the braggadocio that kicked off the automotive year so dramatically.
BMW i Inside Future sculpture
SEMA captures enthusiast vibe Certainly, there’s hope it can be done and the evidence for that is back in Las Vegas. Not at CES however, but at SEMA. The Specialty Equipment Market Association’s annual trade show is held at the same venue as CES, jams it with just as many displays and attendees and even has a similar vibe; it’s just that tech-loving geeks have been replaced by horsepower-loving rev heads. While CES tells us times are changing, SEMA just as strongly says there is still a place to go for kilowatts and acceleration numbers.
Hyundai’s car of the future is not a car
Right now, Detroit sits between these two extremes in what feels like a no-man’s land. But flip that around and surely the opportunity exists for the show to become a prosperous middle ground where all aspects of a divergent automotive world have their place.
For car buyers, motor shows aren’t the be all and end all they once were. They can do a lot of that tyre kicking online nowadays.
Mercedes-Benz wants you fit and healthy
Sales record surpassed - VFACTS 2016 snapshot 1.17 million units exceeded, HiLux tops the chart, Ranger makes top 5. 2016 was another landmark year for the Australian new car market with over 1.17 million units sold and a commercial vehicle claiming the top spot. Amassing 42,104 sales, the Toyota HiLux edged out the Toyota Corolla (40,330), Hyundai i30 (37,772) to seal a historic sales victory. The HiLux’s arch-rival, the Ford Ranger, had a bumper year with 36,934 units sold and fifth position was occupied by the ever-popular Mazda 3, with 36,107 units sold.
Record streak continues
1,178,133 new cars sold.
Growth despite SUVs People Movers up
Picking up market share Light commercials held
of the market.
“The buyer profile has changed dramatically in recent years, with HiLux progressively offering the upmarket features and comfort demanded by families...” —Toyota Australia executive director Tony Cramb.
Low interest rates, low inflation and rising wealth sends market
Ford 14 successive months of sales growth.
224,450 small cars sold.
PU/CC 4x4 units sold.
+16.50% YTD for Medium SUVs.
Source: FCAI VFACTS 2016 carsales.com.au
Corolla, i30 and 3 in the top 10
The Biggest Loser
CX-5 and Tucson in the top 10
consecutive year of 1 million-plus sales.
The new family car?
Mustang supercharges segment
less light cars sold.
new sports cars sold over $200,000.
Dive into the VFACTS 2016 data Discover more about sales and segment performance with our interactive report.
January-December 2016 Change Year on Year Vehicle Segment 24,335
SUV Medium PU/CC 4X4
Sports SUV Upper Large
YTD Change % -30.00
Light Buses => 20 Seats
Vans/CC <= 2.5t
Light Buses < 20 Seats
0K 10K YTD Change
Market to track upwards in 2017?
“The growth, as witnessed in 2016 and appears certain to continue in 2017, is in SUVs and light commercial vehicles, particularly dual cab utilities.” —FCAI chief executive Tony Weber. Source: FCAI VFACTS 2016 carsales.com.au
Australia’s hottest used cars
Discover the most in-demand used cars based on available supply.
Hyundai Accent again proves popular Used car buyers just can’t get enough of the Hyundai Accent over the past 60 days, with 2013, 2014 and 2011 models in the top 10 most in-demand used cars based on available supply, according to the latest LiveMarket actionable market intelligence.
The lower the days supply, the faster a vehicle is likely to sell.
Dealer-friendly insights at your fingertips With LiveMarket, you’re empowered to instantly identify trends in fast moving stock, high volume stock and market supply. Plus compare your performance to your competition via views to lead ratio, price difference, stock mix and more KPIs.
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• Kia Sportage: 2015, $25,981
• Isuzu MU-X: 2014, $36,941
• Hyundai Accent: 2011, $11,085 • Holden Colorado: 2015, $39,007 • Suzuki Grand Vitara: 2007, $10,996 • Land Rover Discovery 4: 2011, $47,322
• Subaru Outback: 2007, $10,560
• Mitsubishi ASX: 2014, $19,598
• Hyundai Accent: 2013, $11,617
• Hyundai Accent: 2014, $12,050
• Kia Rio: 2015, $14,215
• Mazda CX-9: 2015, $40,802 • Jeep Cherokee: 2007, $10,328
Source: carsales LiveMarket data, January 2017. 2005–2015 models with a minimum of 10,000km and 30 delistings from carsales over the previous 60 days.
Will protectionism become the new normal? Implementation of protectionist policy measures may have diverse impact on automakers. BY AGOSTINO GIRAMONDO Environmental forces affecting the global automotive industry are stronger than they have been for some time. Domestically, conversation and analysis have long been centered on the demise of local manufacturing by Ford, Holden and Toyota. Since the shock election of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States however, attention has shifted to how his bold, divisive and unfiltered proclamations could affect currency, trade, manufacturing and the global automotive industry - and as a consequence Australia.
Mexico produced 3.5 million light vehicles in 2016, +67% from 2008.1 Mexican-made with more US content With the surge in Mexican-made cars particularly drawing his ire, Trump appears to be threatening a return to protectionist policy – in the form of withdrawing from North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or a 35 percent tariff on imported vehicles2 – if automakers do not reverse years of investment south of the border and shift auto manufacturing jobs back to the U.S. But would these moves actually benefit the US economy? Research by the Centre for Automotive Research (CAR) into the ramifications of such protectionist
Map source: freevectormaps.com carsales.com.au
action suggests that this move will have negative effects in the form of higher costs for automakers and less choice for consumers.2 Furthermore, CAR noted that given the now intertwined nature of U.S., Canadian and Mexican auto industries, U.S. auto component manufacturers would also be jeopardised by NAFTA withdrawal.2 Previous to NAFTA, cars imported to the U.S. from Mexico were formed by only 5 percent U.S. content. Nowadays, that number has grown to 40 percent.2 Consequently; US withdrawal from NAFTA could see Mexican produced vehicles featuring more content from markets such as China – to the detriment of US jobs.2 Not to mention the prospect of huge and provocative tariffs, that drew widespread criticism. Retaliation could trigger a global trade war that inflates prices and hurts ordinary Americans consumers by reducing their purchasing power.
40% of the materials inside Mexican-made cars exported in 2015 were U.S.-produced.3
Investment, growth and disruption
Donald J. Trump
Interestingly, the start of 2017 was categorised by a stream of automaker investment announcements and meetings with the president.
Thank you to Ford for scrapping a new plant in Mexico and creating 700 new jobs in the U.S. This is just the beginning - much more to follow
To much Twitter fanfare from Trump, Ford reneged on plans to build a new $1.6 billion plant in Mexico in the first few days of the year.
On January 9, Toyota announced a $10 billion investment plan in the United States, to be spread across five years. In the recent past, the automaker endured strong criticism from Trump in relation to plans to transfer production of the Corolla to Mexico.
Then on January 17, Hyundai Motor Group announced plans to increase U.S. investment by 50 percent to $3.1 billion over five years. Within this investment were plans to construct a new factory - on the proviso that consumer demand improved under the Trump administration.
General Motors and Ford last built new U.S.-based assembly plants in 2004. Coincidence or not, the timing of these announcements raised eyebrows around the world. Could it be that vocal threats of protectionist policy were already bearing fruit? For Toyota, the U.S. market is its most profitable and thus substantial – it is one and a half times bigger than its domestic market. It’s likely that for this reason that Toyota continues to expand its production capacity in the United States, which leads to a growing percentage of “Americanmade” vehicles in Toyota’s fleet.
Corona - could greater U.S. production capacity open the door for further disruption and sales growth?
Anticipation for definitive policy What does a stronger Hyundai Motor Group in the U.S. mean for its Australian division? Will an expansion of Toyota’s U.S. manufacturing facilities assist their Australian operations? Will more U.S. or Mexican made vehicles make their way Down Under? Time will tell and uncertainty and change can bring great opportunity. As the world awaits the transition of threats and tweets into concrete policy and legislation, U.S. protectionist policy could present huge opportunities for specific automakers, at the expense of others.
New assembly capacity also gives rise to the possibility of more U.S.-centric product offerings. Many years ago, Toyota disrupted the bottom end of the U.S. market when they introduced the
4.9% of vehicles imported into Australia come from the United States. Approximately 0.3% of cars are imported from Mexico.4
Mexican Automotive Industry Association, 2016. 2 How Trump’s protectionism would destroy auto industry jobs, not create them, Forbes, January 2017. 3 Center for Automotive Research. 4 Trump election win: What it means for car prices, motoring.com.au, November 2016. Map source: freevectormaps.com
News stories Discover the most popular news stories read on motoring.com.au in 2016.
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Ford’s Falcon XR Sprint 10 Is Australia’s quickest car? → Brought to you by motoring.com.au
Reviews Discover the most popular reviews read on motoring.com.au in 2016.
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Hyundai Tucson 2016 Review →
Range Rover Evoque 2016 Review →
Suzuki Vitara S-Turbo 2016 Review →
Ford Everest 2016 Review →
Toyota LandCruiser 2016 Review →
Volkswagen Golf R Wagon 2016 Review →
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Range Rover Sport 2016 Review →
Mazda CX-9 2016 Quick Spin →
10 Foton Tunland 2016 Review → Brought to you by motoring.com.au
Videos Check out the most popular videos watched on motoring.com.au in 2016.
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Grudge Match: Ford XR6
3 2016: Verdict Video →
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6 Review →
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5 Video Preview →
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Kia Cerato 2016: Video
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10 Review →
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