We explain why two dual-cab utes became the top-selling vehicles of 2017.
Back in 2008, Australians bought 1,012,250 vehicles and our tastes at the time demonstrate just how much the market has changed in a decade. Holden’s Commodore was our number one choice, as it had been for the previous 13 years, and the slogan of "football, meat pies and Holden cars" still had plenty of resonance. Snapping at its heels was the Toyota Corolla and Toyota HiLux in second and third place respectively.
But the popularity of SUVs was beginning to gain momentum, and the most popular ones at the time - the Toyota Prado, Subaru Forester, and Nissan X-Trail - were genuinely capable off-road vehicles and less 'urbanised' than today's SUVs. Ford's Territory range, launched four years earlier, was one of the first of the new breed of large SUVs to gain any traction against traditional 4WDs. Built on the Falcon platform, the Territory was more user-friendly in the suburbs than a bulky 4WD.
Last year, total car sales increased to 1,189,116 and SUVs overtook passenger cars for the first time, underscoring changes in buyer preference. While the mix of vehicles has shifted, many of the most popular vehicles still remain popular. Holden's Commodore, for well documented reasons, has slipped out of the top three. The Toyota HiLux has replaced it in first place, followed by its fierce competitor, the Ford Ranger, at number two, and the Toyota Corolla in third.