The top 10 car brands and models that South Africans are buying right now

 ·5 Nov 2023

Despite rising living costs, some car brands and models remain popular among South African motorists who could afford to buy a new car last month.

According to Naamsa’s latest New Vehicle Sales stats, aggregate domestic new vehicle sales in October 2023 – at 45,445 units – reflected a decline of 905 units or a fall of 2% from the 46,350 vehicles sold in October 2022.

This was the third consecutive month of decline in the new vehicle market.

The report further showed that the new passenger car market at 29,912 units had registered a decline of 1,068 cars, or a loss of 3.5%, compared to the 30,980 new cars sold in October 2022.

This is despite Car rental sales accounted for a sound 18.3% or 5,468 units of the new passenger vehicle sales.

Domestic sales of new light commercial vehicles, bakkies and mini-buses at 12,361 units during October 2023 also recorded a decline of 387 units, or a loss of 3%, from the 12,748 light commercial vehicles sold during October 2022.

Naamsa noted that persisting economic strain on businesses and consumers continued to impact directly on new vehicle sales, which encouraged the continued decline in recent vehicle sales.

Despite this, Toyota retained its title as South Africa’s best-selling carmaker, selling 12,440 vehicles thanks to the sustained popularity of its Hilux bakkie.

Volkswagen (VW) also remains the second most popular brand, with 6,595 units sold, while Suzuki is third, with 4,480 units sold.

Toyota comprised 27.3% of all vehicles sold last month. This is well above the combined sales of VW (14.5%) and Suzuki (9.9%), which comprised 24.3% of all vehicles sold.

Of the total reported industry sales of 46,021 vehicles, 80.2% were represented by dealer sales, 12.9% to the vehicle rental industry, 4.1% to the government, and 2.8% to corporate industry fleets.

The top 10 brands that sold the most cars locally in October 2023 were:

  1. Toyota – 12,440 units
  2. Volkswagen Group – 6,595 units
  3. Suzuki – 4,480 units
  4. Hyundai – 2,638 units
  5. Ford – 2,318 units
  6. Nissan – 2,178 units
  7. Isuzu – 1,848 units
  8. Renault – 1,606 units
  9. Kia – 1,417 units
  10. Haval – 1,389 units

Best-selling models 

With an impressive 3,110 sales, the Toyota Hilux was South Africa’s best-selling vehicle in October – accounting for 6.8% of all cars sold.

Additionally, Toyota boasted four models in the top 10 best-selling cars – which included the Hilux (1st), Toyota Corolla Cross (3rd), Toyota Hi-Ace (5th), and the Toyota Starlet (7th).

Following its one-month reign at the top in April, the new Ford Ranger ranked 4th in October, selling 2,413 units and dropping one place from 3rd in September.

The second and third most popular brands, VW and Suzuki, also featured models in the top ten – the VW Polo Vivo (2nd), the VW Polo (9th) and the Suzuki Swift (8th).

The top 10 best-selling models, including the abovementioned models, and how many units were sold in October 2023 are listed below.

1. Toyota Hilux – 3,110 units sold

  • Starting price: R356,600

2. VW Polo Vivo – 2,280 units sold

  • Starting price: R255,600

3. Toyota Corolla Cross – 2,100 units sold

  • Starting price: R408,400

4. Ford Ranger – 1,853 units sold

  • Starting price: R494,400

5. Toyota Hiace – 1,546 units sold

  • Starting price: R543,900

6. Isuzu D-Max – 1,464 units sold

  • Starting price: R442,800

7. Toyota Starlet – 1,363 units sold

  • Starting price: R252,100

8. Suzuki Swift – 1,248 units sold

  • Starting price: R199,900

9. VW Polo – 1,235 units sold

  • Starting price: R343,100

10. Nissan NP200 – 961 units sold

  • Starting price: R234,000

Read: How much you need to earn to afford the cheapest BMW, Audi, and Mercedes SUV in South Africa

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