With Christmas on the way, there’s never been a better time to buy a new vehicle.

At least that’s the message from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI).

The problem is that Australians don’t seem to share this sentiment, with sales of new vehicles down almost 10 per cent last month.

The results confirm continuing “sluggish” new vehicle sales in the Australian market, with 84,708 sales recorded during the month — a 9.8 per cent decrease on last year.

FCAI boss Tony Weber said it was the 20th consecutive month of decreasing sales.

“It is a tough market – full stop,” he said.

“The industry has been looking for a lift for some time now and has activated multiple levers to achieve some stimulation, including incentives, sales and special vehicle editions.

“However, the appetite for new vehicles remains suppressed.”

Total sales for the month in the Passenger vehicle segment totalled 23,022 (down 21.3 per cent over November 2018), with 39,541 in the SUV segment (down 1.1 per cent on November 2018) and 19,065 in the Light Commercial vehicle segment (down 8.8 per cent on November 2018).

The Toyota Hilux (3687 units) was the top selling vehicle in November 2019, followed by the Ford Ranger (3491), the Mitsubishi Triton (3123), the Hyundai i30 (2339) and the Toyota RAV4 (2316).

Toyota remained the top selling marque for the month with 16,954 sales for 20 per cent market share.

It was followed by Mitsubishi with 6861 (8.1 per cent market share), Hyundai with 6821(8.1 per cent market share), Mazda (6167 sales for 7.3 per cent market share) and Kia (5141 sales for 6.1 per cent market share).

Mr Weber has previously blamed difficult access to credit as one of the primary reasons for the decline in sales.

But this month credit doesn’t rate a mention.

“On the bright side, there has never been a better time to purchase a new vehicle,” he said.

“With over 60 brands and more than 350 models, the Australian market is one of the most competitive in the world.

“This is great news for consumers who have an abundance of choice and pricing options when it comes to selecting a new vehicle.

“Now, with the holiday season upon us, is a great time to act!”

Top 10 models by sales:

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Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for almost 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.