Here are the 10 most searched-for cars in South Africa right now

The Volkswagen Polo is the most searched-or car online, beating the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, new AutoTrader data for the first quarter of 2019 shows.

In 2017, the BMW 3 Series was the most searched-for car while this honour went to the Mercedes-Benz C-Class in 2018. The Volkswagen Polo however, as reigned supreme as the best-selling passenger vehicle car in South Africa for some time.

“It is interesting to see how the vehicle’s popularity has risen,” said George Mienie, AutoTrader CEO. “In 2017, it came in at position number six. In 2018, it moved up in the rankings to position number three.”

Hot on the Polo’s heels is yet another stalwart of the South African motor industry, namely the Toyota Hilux.

“While the Hilux has moved up in the rankings over the years, its popularity hasn’t quite soared like that of the Polo,” said Mienie. The Hilux occupied the number four spot in 2017 and it moved up to the number two spot in 2018, a position it retains in the first quarter of 2019.

Mienie said that the popularity of the Polo and Hilux come as no surprise.

“While these two vehicles are worlds apart, they have one thing in common: they’re icons of the South African motor industry,” he said.

The same can be said of the C-Class, one of the most consistent performers in the AutoTrader top 10, the chief executive said. It was number two in 2017, number one in 2018 and it’s number three in the first quarter of 2019, he said.

“The Golf is our fourth most searched-for vehicle so far this year; it was in third spot in 2017. However, when the latest Polo was launched in 2018, it plummeted to sixth spot,” Mienie said.

The BMW 3 Series, which was number one in 2017, rounds off the top five in quarter one of 2019. It is followed by the Ford Ranger (number 6), BMW 1 Series (number 7), Audi A3 (number 8), Toyota Fortuner (number 9) and BMW X5 (number 10). All five of these vehicles also featured in the top 10 in 2017 and 2018, AutoTrader said.

“This shows the loyalty of South African motorists,” noted Mienie. “Once they know and love a particular car, they are unlikely to change brands and/or models.”

Q1 rankings for most searched for cars on AutoTrader:


1 Volkswagen Polo


2 Toyota Hilux


3 Mercedes-Benz C-Class


4 Volkswagen Golf


5 BMW 3 Series


6 Ford Ranger


7 BMW 1 Series


8 Audi A3


9 Toyota Fortuner


10 BMW X5


Read: Here’s how much South Africans are spending on a new car

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Here are the 10 most searched-for cars in South Africa right now