Volvo has picked up where it left off in the tightly-contested 2023 sales race – pushing Kenworth for supremacy in the heavy-duty sector.
In the recently released January sales figures from the Truck Industry Council, the Wacol-based badge has shot to an early lead with 179 deliveries, albeit just five trucks more than its arch rival from Bayswater.
Once again, Isuzu nailed down its usual category slot in third with 130 deliveries, with next best Scania starting off the year on solid footing with 86.
Among the rest, there were no real surprises with Mack, Mercedes-Benz, Fuso, DAF, and UD Trucks all in the usual tight tussle for a spot in the top five.
In total, there were 948 heavies delivered in January, a new record for the month, and four more than January 2023 when Kenworth began the year leading on 197 over Volvo on 175.
In the medium category, which experienced a five-year high, Isuzu got off to its usual flyer, recording 243 sales. The big surprise here was the relatively slow start from Fuso with 38 deliveries, losing early ground to Hino which notched 135.
In the overall January numbers, Isuzu was again on top with 758 deliveries on the way to what will undoubtedly be its 36th straight year as the leading seller in the Australian market.
That number, however, was softer than the same month in 2023 when it notched 900 sales and a 32.3 per cent market share.
Overall, total Australian new truck sales for January 2024 were 2703 units, falling short of setting a new January heavy vehicle sales record by 83 trucks. That record still sits with January 2023.
TIC CEO Tony McMullan said it was pleasing to see such a strong start to the year for new heavy vehicle sales in Australia.
“However, as I generally remark at this time of year, January and even February sales, are subject to fluctuations and some inconsistencies due to the transition of supplying trucks from one year to the next and the summer holiday period,” McMullan said.
“The relative poor showing in the light truck segment could well be due to these factors. Hence one should not read too much into these January results.
“We will have a much better indication of how the market is tracking for the year at the end of the first quarter, once January, February and March numbers are in and the market has had a chance to normalise.”