AUSTRALIA has got used to recent statistics showing its best sellers are utes, rather than sedans, and it’s a similar picture in the US.
But not so in many other parts of the world – and one of the (very) big sellers is the GAC Trumpchi. Yes, really.
It’s an attractive Chinese SUV, which ran ninth in its domestic market and is earmarked for release in the US next year.
If that happens, it’s likely to drop the GAC part of its name and be sold simply as the Trumpchi, a Chinese term that translates to ‘passing on happiness’ rather than a play on the US President’s name.
Or, it might change the name entirely.
Anyway, narly 500,000 Trumpchis were sold in China last year.
Market leader in China, which makes and sells more vehicles than any other nation on the planet (about 30 million) was led by the Wuling Hongguang, a seven-seater SUV the result of a joint venture of Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation, Liuzhou Wuling Motors Co and GM China.
Next came the Haval – recently launched in Australia – and third was the Jetta-based VW Lavida.
Next was the Buick Excelle GT, the Lotus-suspensioned Baojun 730 SUV, Nissan Sylphy, VW Jetta, VW Sagitar (also Jetta-based), the GAC Trumpchi GS4 and the Baojun 560.
#AUSTRALIA’S top 10 for 2017 were: Toyota HiLux, Ford Ranger, Toyota Corolla, Mazda3, Hyundai i30, Mazda CX-5, Hyundai Tucson, Holden Commodore, Toyota Camry and Mitsubishi Triton.
#IN North America, the market leader was Ford’s F-Series, which was bought by nearly 900,000 people – pretty close to the entire vehicle sales year of the entire Australian market.
Next came the Chevrolet Silverado, the Ram pickup, Toyota Rav4, Nissan Rogue, Toyota Camry, Honda CR-V, Honda Civic, Honda Accord and Toyota Corolla.
In the United Kingdom, the big favourite was the Ford Fiesta, heading the field from other passenger cars and a SUV, with nary a ute in sight.
Second top seller was Volkswagen’s Golf, followed by Ford Focus, Nissan Qashqai, Vauxhall Corsa, Vauxhall Astra, Volkswagen Polo, Mini, Mercedes C-Class and Mercedes A-Class.
#SOUTH Africans appear to be fiercely patriotic, with many of the 10 top-selling vehicles built in South Africa.
Of the 358 different models on the market, only 25 were locally built, but they accounted for a healthy 45.5per cent of sales.
Leader of the pack was the VW Polo Vivo, then the Polo, Toyota Fortuner, Toyota Etios, Toyota Corolla Quest, Ford Fiesta, Ford EcoSport, VW Polo Vivo Sedan, Renault Kwid and Toyota Rav4.
#AND then there’s Belarus, where Renault ruled the roost, well ahead of VW, Lada, Skoda, Nissan, Hyundai, GAZ, Mitsubishi, Mazda and Ford.