Holden posted its eighth year of sales declines in 2018, and in the process, rival Ford outsold the brand for the first time in 21 years, according to a report from Car Advice on Tuesday.
The last time Ford overtook Holden was in 1997 ahead of the latter’s glory years in the early 2000s. However, these days, it’s not the same picture for either brand. Although Ford can claim victory over Holden, neither brand duked it out for the top spot. Instead, both Ford and Holden placed outside of the Australian market’s top four brands.
Ford sales were also down for the second year in a row.
The Ranger and Mustang helped Ford keep ahead of Holden throughout 2018. Holden led Ford for just a single month in 2018—January—after the brand declared it sold more cars than it actually moved. At Holden, the Colorado and Astra were the best-sellers, closely followed by the Commodore.
And Commodore sales remain a mixed bag. The report notes the new imported Commodore is selling at a rate of less than half over the previous locally built VF Commodore. But, more private buyers bought the imported Commodore compared to sales of the VF Commodore by a very small margin.
Looking ahead, Holden said no vehicle is off the table at Holden under its new chairman and managing director, David Buttner, formerly of Toyota. Although, as GM restructures in North America, Holden is likely to have a growing portfolio of crossovers and SUVs to choose from rather than sedans. GM plans to send the Chevrolet Impala, Volt, Cruze, Buick LaCrosse, and Cadillac CT6 to the automotive graveyard in 2019.