AUSTRALIA's best selling car of 2016 is not a car at all, but Toyota's HiLux ute.
It's the first time a vehicle other than a passenger car has been the country's best seller for an entire calendar year.
The HiLux edged out Toyota's and Australia's best-seller for the previous three years, the Corolla small passenger car. Australians bought 42,104 new HiLuxes and 40,330 new Corollas.
Hyundai's i30 secured third place with 37,772, next best ute and fourth overall was Ford's Ranger with 36,934 sales while Mazda's 3 was fifth with 36,107.
The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries sales results for the Australian automotive industry also revealed we have once again bought more new cars than ever before.
Australians bought 1,178,133 new passenger cars, SUVs and commercial vehicles in 2016, an increase of 2% on the 2015 calendar year record. It's the third new car sales record in four years.
New car sales figures showed the main growth was in SUVs and light commercial vehicles, particularly dual cab utilities like the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger.
Toyota Australia's executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said the victory by HiLux marked a significant turning point in the Australian automotive industry.
"HiLux has made history as the first vehicle of its type to stand on top of the sales podium in Australia because it has broad appeal with the car-buying public," Mr Cramb said.
The HiLux was the top-selling vehicle in Queensland for the 10th straight year, the top-seller in Western Australia for the ninth year in a row, and 16th consecutive annual best seller in the Northern Territory.
In more good news for Toyota, 2016 saw the Japanese brand being sales leader in Australia for the 20th time in the past 26 years, including the past 14 years in a row.
Toyota was the best-selling brand in every Australian state and territory, with local motorists buying 209,610 vehicles from Toyota dealers in 2016; 91,393 more than any other brand, and a gain of 1.6% compared with Toyota's sales the previous year.
Australia's best seller through the years
2016 Toyota HiLux (42,104 sold)
2015 Toyota Corolla (42,073)
2014 Toyota Corolla (43,735)
2013 Toyota Corolla (43,498)
2012 Mazda3 (44,128)
2011 Mazda3 (41,429)
2010 Holden Commodore (45,956)
2009 Holden Commodore (44,387)
2008 Holden Commodore (51,093)
Australia's best-sellers in 2016
1. Toyota HiLux (42,104 sold)
2. Toyota Corolla (40,330)
3. Hyundai i30 (37,772)
4. Ford Ranger (36,934)
5. Mazda3 (36,107)
6. Toyota Camry (26,485)
7. Holden Commodore (25,860)
8. Mazda CX-5 (24,564)
Australia's best-selling brands of 2016
1. Toyota (17.8%)
2. Mazda (10.0%)
3. Hyundai (8.6%)
4. Holden (8.0%)
5. Ford (6.9%)
6. Mitsubishi (6.2%)
7. Nissan (5.7%)
8. Volkswagen (4.8%)
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