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Cars flying off the lot across Australia

Cars flying off the lot across Australia

Australia could post its fourth consecutive year of record car sales, according to new data from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries.

There were 95,221 vehicle sales in August – down 1.5 per cent on the previous year, but still the second-best August result in history.

There were 786,294 vehicle sales in the first eight months of 2018, which was just 0.3 per cent lower than the first eight months of 2017.

Best-selling vehicles in August

  1. Toyota Hilux = 4,275
  2. Ford Ranger = 3,515
  3. Toyota Corolla = 3,033
  4. Mazda3 = 2,969
  5. Mazda CX-5 = 2,599

In the first eight months, sales climbed in three states – Tasmania by 12.2 per cent, South Australia by 1.5 per cent and Victoria by 0.5 per cent.

However, sales fell by 9.7 per cent in the Northern Territory, 5.1 per cent in the ACT, 4.1 per cent in New South Wales, 3.9 per cent in Western Australia and 0.3 per cent in Queensland.

So far in 2018, SUVs have accounted for 42.8 per cent of sales, passenger cars 33.6 per cent and light commercial vehicles 20.2 per cent.

Highest market share in August

  1. Toyota = 19.8 per cent
  2. Mazda = 11.3 per cent
  3. Hyundai = 8.4 per cent
  4. Mitsubishi = 7.4 per cent
  5. Ford = 6.3 per cent

Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries chief executive Tony Weber said people were still buying cars, despite property prices falling in some areas and a drought afflicting others.

“It’s important to remember that the 2017 total was the third record year in a row for the industry and, year to date, we are sitting just 0.3 per cent below that record pace again,” he said.

“By any measure, that indicates there’s resilience and continued demand in the market. It also means we are still within striking distance of another record year.”

Some of the cheapest car loans in Australia

LenderAdvertised rateComparison rate
360 Finance4.69%5.60%
Mortgage House4.99%6.28%
Illawarra Credit Union5.25%5.89%
Bank First5.29%5.50%
Community First Credit Union5.34%6.10%

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This article was reviewed by Head of Content Leigh Stark before it was published as part of RateCity's Fact Check process.

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Learn more about car loans

What is depreciation?

Depreciation is the reduction in the value of your car. Almost every car loses value each year, although at different rates. As a guide, cars depreciate on average by 14 per cent per year in the first three years and then eight per cent per year after that.

Can you get a chattel mortgage with bad credit?

Getting approval for a chattel mortgage with bad credit may be possible, given ‘chattel’ (usually a piece of equipment or car) is put up as security for the loan. That means if you fail to repay the loan, the creditor can recover the loaned amount by repossessing and selling the car or piece of equipment. This differs from unsecured car loans, where the asset is not tied to the loan and cannot be taken if you don’t meet the repayments. 

How to get a chattel mortgage?

Both businesses and individuals may use a chattel mortgage, provided that the car is being used predominantly for business purposes. 

To apply for a chattel mortgage, you need to first consider your options and choose a suitable lender that meets your requirements. Once you have selected a lender, you can apply for the loan online by filling out a form. If the lender doesn’t offer an online application process, you can either call them or visit their nearest branch. 

After you’ve applied, the lender will ask you to supply documents that confirm your identification, income, job profile, etc. If everything is in order, most lenders will arrange the loan’s settlement, so all you need to do is pick up your car!

What is resale value?

The resale value is the price you could realistically charge if you were to sell your car. Almost every car loses value each year, although at different rates. As a guide, cars depreciate on average by 14 per cent per year in the first three years and then eight per cent per year after that.

What is a variable-rate loan?

A variable-rate loan is one where the lender can change the interest rate whenever it wants. For example, if you sign up for a variable-rate loan at 8.75 per cent, the lender might change the interest rate to 8.90 per cent the month after and then 8.65 per cent the month after that. By contrast, if you take out a five-year fixed-rate loan at 8.75 per cent, the lender is obliged to leave your interest rate at 8.75 per cent for at least five years.

What is a dealership?

A dealership is a car yard or a place where cars are sold.

What is a credit score?

Your credit score is a number that represents how credit-worthy you are. The higher your credit score, the more credit-worthy you are and the more likely you are to receive loans from credit providers.

There is no industry standard for credit scores – different credit reporting bodies use different methodologies. For example, Equifax gives consumers scores between 0 and 1,200; Illion (through the Credit Simple service) gives scores between 0 and 1,000; and Experian gives scores between 0 and 999.

When it comes to car loans, lenders tend to offer lower interest rates to borrowers with better credit score. There are steps you can take to improve your credit score, including paying bills on time and paying off existing loans.

What is an operating lease?

An operating lease is an arrangement by which a company leases a car from a vehicle fleet supplier for a set period. It’s a bit like a long-term car rental in that the company gains access to the car but the supplier retains ownership. Companies like operating leases because they are tax-deductible and because they save the company from having to make a large upfront payment to buy a car.

What is proof of residence?

Before giving you a car loan, lenders will ask for proof of residence – documentary evidence that you live where you claim you live. Lenders will typically want some combination of utility bills, bank statements, mortgage documents or driver’s licence. The reason lenders want proof of residence is to verify your identity and credit history.

What is an asset lease?

An asset lease, also known as a finance lease or car lease, is an arrangement by which a finance company buys a car on your behalf. You get to borrow the car in return for making regular payments to the financier. At the end of the lease, you can either buy the car or hand it back.

What is an interest rate?

The interest rate is the price you have to pay for borrowing money. The interest rate is expressed as an annual percentage of however much of the loan remains to be paid. For example, if you took out a $10,000 car loan with an interest rate of 8.75 per cent, you would be charged 8.75 per cent of $10,000, or $875 of interest per year. But if you then reduced the outstanding loan to $9,000, your annual interest bill would be 8.75 per cent of $9,000, or $787.50.

What is proof of income?

Before giving you a car loan, lenders will ask for proof of income – documentary evidence that you earn as much as you claim you earn. Lenders will typically want some combination of tax returns, pay slips and bank statements. The reason lenders want proof of income is because they want to be sure you have the means to repay the car loan.

What is CTP insurance?

CTP insurance, also known as compulsory third-party insurance or a green slip, is compulsory if you want to register a vehicle in Australia. If you’re responsible for a car accident, your CTP insurance will be used to pay any compensation due to anyone who might be injured or killed. However, CTP insurance doesn’t cover you for vehicle damage or theft.

What is a commercial hire purchase?

A commercial hire purchase, or CHP, is an arrangement by which a finance company buys a car on your behalf. You get to borrow the car in return for making regular payments to the financier. Once the final payment is made, you take ownership of the car.