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Hyundai overtakes Mazda as top importer, both play it down

The development for industry followers is an interesting one, given the result of the battle royale between the Japanese and Korean brands not only determines which finishes in third place on the sales charts overall, but also which takes the title top full-line vehicle importer. Also of consideration for Mazda is its strong presence by global standards. The carryover champion performs better here in a relative, per capita basis than anywhere else. Consider, it was the first full importer to manage 100K annual sales.

As it stands, Hyundai has now registered 92,354 vehicles in 2014, up 3.5 per cent in a down market. Mazda has over the period delivered 91,973 units, down 2.8 per cent. The total market is down 2.2 per cent, meaning Hyundai is bucking the trend here.

That said, Mazda is second overall in private sales behind Toyota. Private sales generally carry bigger margins and are therefore more desirable than fleet deals.

Comparing the two brands is interesting. Hyundai offers more models, with 11 lines compared to Mazda’s seven. Hyundai also does more fleet deals than Mazda, which aside from its BT-50 is very private-buyer focused.

Doing the heavy lifting for Hyundai is the i20, up 9.3 per cent and the incumbent top-seller in the light-car segment over the Mazda 2. Also strong is the ix35, which is down 3.6 per cent but remains the small SUV class champion (though the Mazda CX-3 is coming soon), and the Santa Fe has almost doubled the Mazda CX-9.

Published: Wednesday, December 3, 2014

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