NZ new vehicle sales rise 14% to new record for a February month

New Zealand new vehicle sales rose to a February record, marking the second month of record sales this year and continuing the strong run over the past three years.

Registrations of new vehicles jumped 14% to 11,785 in February from the year-earlier month, the highest level ever recorded for the month, according to the Motor Industry Association.

The country's new car market has been on a tear, with registrations up 9.5% last year to hit the highest ever annual tally of 146,753 and three straight years of record sales, as the economy is buoyed by low interest rates and record migration and tourism.

"Registration data for February shows growth in the new vehicle sector continues as expected,"  Motor Industry Association chief executive David Crawford said. "As the 2017 year progresses, market conditions remain unchanged from 2016, with record net immigration, low cost of debt and a strong economy."

Commercial vehicle registrations in February rose 20% to 3733, while passenger car and SUV vehicle registrations gained 12% to 8052, according to the MIA data.

Japanese car maker Toyota was the overall market leader for the month, with a 15% market share, followed by Ford with 11% and Holden with 9%, the MIA said.

The Ford Ranger was the bestselling vehicle model for the month, with 664 registrations, followed by the Toyota Hilux with 533 registrations, and the Holden Colorado with 351, the MIA said.


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