Blue Oval fans could have cause for extra celebration come Christmas time.
This may be the first year since 1978 where a Holden Commodore-versus-Ford Falcon sales race won’t play out, but 2017 is also shaping up to be the year Ford could topple Holden for overall brand volume.
Rewind 15 years and in 2002 the Port Melbourne-based division of General Motors shifted 178,392 vehicles, handing it a 69,195-unit lead over its Broadmeadows-based rival.
Five years later and by 2007 the gap narrowed to 38,609 vehicles, while another half-decade later The Falcon Car Company in 2012 came closest of all by being only 24,257 sales behind. That was, however, until last year when Ford trailed Holden by just 13,101 sales.
This year is much closer again. Based on July year-to-date sales data, the Mustang (5967) is comprehensively outstripping where Falcon (2819) was this time last year, and yet the Everest large SUV (2578) isn’t as far adrift of where the Territory (4251) was just after mid-2016. Indeed, Mustang/Everest are 1475 sales ahead of Falc/Tezza, this year versus last.
Ford overall is down 0.6 per cent year-to-date and, on current trends, will achieve 80,529 sales by year’s end.
It’s extremely bad news for Holden, which is so far down 11.8 per cent year-to-date and, if the spiral continues, will manage 83,280 sales this year. Except on October 20 production of Commodore, Caprice and ute will end.
There’s no Captiva replacement until December with the Equinox, while the Acadia is more than a year away. Where is the mooted V8 sports car? GM execs won’t yet say, but Camaro and Corvette will fail to materialise in 2017.
That leaves the total line-up a predicted 2751 sales ahead of Ford before factory closure, but without a surge of new product to offset the impending closure. Can Holden hold on?