High hopes, sharp prices
There is another record sales year in the offing but the pace is slowing — here are the deals to swoop on
AUSTRALIA will post another new-car sales record by the time numbers roll in for 2016.
But all is not what it seems. The market has slowed in the second half of the year and this means even sharper discounts are beginning to emerge.
Year-to-date growth is down from a 3.4 per cent increase at the half way mark, in June, to a 2.2 per cent increase by the end of November.
The car industry does not know why there has been a slowdown and the best brains in the business don’t know if it’s just a “blip”.
With two years of sustained low interest rates and currency driven discounts, have Australians gorged themselves on new cars and can’t digest any more?
Car companies will get even more desperate with discounts if there isn’t a bounce in the coming months.
Meanwhile we’ve assembled the best deals on the market today. Some will be familiar, some are at unprecedented lows.
The other key thing to remember this time of year is the “build date” or “build plate”.
Regardless of whether the model you’re buying is called a “2017 model year” or has a “2017 compliance plate”, the only date that matters is the car’s build date.
The car may be only a few months old but in the dealer’s eyes it will soon be a year old, as soon as the calendar clicks over, and they want to make way for fresh stock.
In most cases, the discount you get by buying an end-ofyear model is far greater than the potential benefit of buying an early 2017-built car — because you’ll pay a premium for that, and won’t get much extra on the used market when selling a 2016 versus a 2017 car a few years from now. With that in mind, let’s go shopping.
The tiny tot market is tough. Suzuki has limboed to a new low of $12,990 drive-away for a Celerio with auto. Normally that’s the price of the manual. It is by far Australia’s cheapest car.
Also doing it tough is the Kia Picanto: it’s still $14,990 with auto (and an industry-leading seven-year warranty) but Kia has thrown in a $500 gift card. Depending on the dealer, that may come off the price. That’s a lot of car for not a lot of money.
The Holden Spark hasn’t been bolting out the door either, but the best of the tiny tots has come back to a more reasonable $16,690 drive-away with auto. Be warned: metallic paint is $550 extra. Ouch.
Need a little more room and can stretch the budget? The Suzuki Swift is back down to $15,990 drive-away with auto, an absolute steal, ahead of an all-new model that’s still about a year away.
The Toyota Yaris is back to $17,990 drive-away with auto.
Can you drive a manual? You can get a bigger small car for a super sharp price. The Nissan Pulsar manual can be had for $16,990 drive-away — about $4000 off. The auto is also not bad at $19,290 drive-away.
The Hyundai i30 is back to $19,990 drive-away — but read the fine print. That’s for a manual. The auto is $21,990 drive-away. Then either take the $1000 gift card or rip $1000 off the price and make it $20,990 drive-away for an auto. If you took the gift card as a discount, it makes the run-out i30 only $1000 dearer than the $19,990 drive-away with auto offer earlier in the year.
Sister brand Kia still has the updated Cerato automatic at $19,990 drive-away for the sedan or hatch. It may lack a rear view camera but the brand’s warranty is the best in the business.
Mazda is playing cute with “free on-roads” with its Mazda3 sedan and hatch (and most of its range), which means some buyers will pay more than others because dealer delivery is open to negotiation.
Best to wait until Mazda
does a genuine “drive-away, no more to pay” deal.
Toyota has a couple of stepping stones into a Corolla — pay $22,990 drive-away for the base auto or an extra $1000 (to $23,990) will get you the better equipped Ascent Sport and four years’ roadside assistance.
Nissan has hit a new low price with the Altima sedan, now just $25,990 drive-away for the ST with constantly variable transmission. This is at least $5000 off its full RRP and definitely worth a look.
Australia’s No. 1 sedan, the Toyota Camry, is still at a super low $27,990 driveaway, with the “no strings” zero finance deal extended to the end of the month. There is no massive balloon payment or hidden charges. It’s just $27,990. At 0 per cent. Awesome deal. Also comes with a $1000 fuel card. Discounts have been rare on the Holden Commodore but the SV6 Black Edition has an extra $2000 off this month, dropping the price to $36,990 drive-away — almost as low as Commodore dipped to three years ago. This is good buying as it brings a lot of the luxury gear from the Calais to the SV6.
Holden is clearing out a bunch of SUVs before new metal arrives next year. The Trax baby SUV can be had from just $22,990 driveaway with auto, the Captiva5 is a ridiculous $23,990 drive-away once you take the $1000 bonus into consideration. Similarly the Captiva7 is insanely cheap at $27,990 drive-away once you take a $2000 bonus into consideration. It is by far Australia’s cheapest full-size seven-seater. The weird-looking Nissan Juke is finally at a price young buyers can afford: from $23,990 drive-away with auto. This is about $5000 off its full RRP.
Mitsubishi is at it again with the little ASX at $25K driveaway with auto and five-year factory warranty. Its Outlander seven-seater has now dipped to $29,990 drive-away with auto.
Need to tow a caravan? The Mitsubishi Pajero has been slashed to $49,990 drive-away with auto. This is about $10,000 off its original RRP and the cheapest it has ever been.
The Pajero Sport also comes in for a discount, now $47,500 drive-away.
Toyota has ripped up the price of the HiLux as it races to become our outright top-selling vehicle for the year.
Drive-away pricing has dropped to a new low just 12 months after the latest model went on sale — slashing $6500 off the full retail price of the flagship HiLux SR5, to $52,990 for the manual and $54,990 for the auto.
At the bargain end of the market, the Mitsubishi Triton GLX+ continues to make life difficult for the other brands with a red hot deal that’s at least $10,000 less than most rivals, at $33,990 drive-away for a manual, with the $2000 bonus taken into account. Twist an arm and pay $35,990 driveaway for an auto.
The market has slowed in the second half of the year and this means even sharper discounts are beginning to emerge
MITSUBISHI ASX $25,000 drive-away auto
SUZUKI CELERIO $12,990 drive-away auto
KIA PICANTO $14,990 auto, $500 gift card
HOLDEN TRAX $22,990 drive-away auto
NISSAN PULSAR $16,990 drive-away manual ($19,290 auto)
TOYOTA CAMRY $27,990 drive-away $1000 fuel card