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Toyota’s Hilux is again New Zealand’s number one selling 4WD ute, with Kiwis purchasing 4,306 new Hilux 4WDs in 2014.
The 4WD ute best suited to the Kiwi lifestyle has smoked its nearest competitor by more than 601 units in 2014.
“This is another excellent result for Hilux, and confirms its iconic status in New Zealand,” said Steve Prangnell, General Manager Sales, Toyota New Zealand.
“Hilux 4WD has continued to go from strength-to-strength. Kiwi ute buyers are smart and know that Hilux is the right ute for the job it needs to do.
“The fact that Hilux 4WD remains on top is testament to the fondness that Kiwis have for the Hilux – and to the public recognition of Hilux 4WD being the perfect ute for the Kiwi terrain and lifestyle.”
Mr Prangnell believes the combination of rugged style, unrivalled toughness and reliability resonate with Kiwis.
“There might be newer utes out there, utes with more bling – but at the end of the day, our customers want a truck that they know will deliver whatever they ask of it, all while holding an incredible re-sale value.
“Unlike some of its unwieldy wider competitors, Hilux is a little narrower to make it more suited to Kiwi country roads, making it an ideal choice for ute buyers in rural areas, farmers and forestry workers.
“Our feedback is that customers respect the history of Hilux in New Zealand – it is the embodiment of New Zealand-proven.”
The Hilux 2WD finished second in its category, selling 1478 new units, as stock shortage and gaps in the model mix of the current generation took their toll.
Toyota New Zealand will focus on adjusting these factors when the eighth generation of the iconic ute arrives in New Zealand late in 2015.
“We have struggled with lacking some specific models in the 2WD category,” said Mr Prangnell.
“Not being able to offer automatic in 2WD models has left us fighting in the marketplace with one hand tied behind our back.
“However, we will address these concerns by offering more model options for 2WD in our next generation.
“Our biggest challenge will remain ensuring we keep getting enough Hilux stock to satisfy the number of Kiwis wanting a new Hilux.”
Hilux 4WD was just one of Toyota New Zealand’s many success stories in 2014; the brand again finishing as the number one manufacturer in the country for the 27th consecutive year.
Note: All figures based on preliminary data.