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Tim Dornin

Vehicle sales rise, but long waits persist

Some new vehicle buyers are having to wait more than 12 months for delivery, as the market recovers. (Dean Lewins/AAP PHOTOS) (AAP)

Extended wait times for some vehicles remain a factor for Australian car buyers despite the ongoing recovery in the vehicle market, the industry's peak body says.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries says the market rose by 17.9 per cent in November with 95,080 new cars and trucks retailed.

That took demand for the year to 993,509, a 2.3 per cent improvement compared to the same time last year.

FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said the one-millionth new vehicle for 2022 would be sold over the next week.

"The automotive sector is continuing to recover from (COVID-19) pandemic-related shutdowns, a global shortage of microprocessors and the general supply chain uncertainty we experienced over the last two years," Mr Weber said.

"While this is positive news, many customers are still facing extended wait times for their vehicle, with expected delivery dates for some models beyond 12 months."

Sales of battery electric, plug-in hybrid and hybrid vehicles continued to rise with 13,415 zero and low-emission vehicles sold in November.

Sales of battery electric vehicles more than doubled compared with October to 4457 while demand for hybrid's was also up by more than 70 per cent compared to November last year.

The improvement came as the federal government considers purchase incentives, increased fuel quality standards and an emissions target for the light vehicle sector to further boost the alternative-fuel segment.

"Purchase incentives for zero and low emission vehicles, and increased fuel quality standards are both important levers in reducing CO2 emissions from Australia's light vehicle fleet," Mr Weber said.

"These need to be combined with a federally-led emissions target for the light vehicle sector.

"One which is ambitious, yet achievable and is cognisant of vehicle price, model availability, battery supply and infrastructure requirements."

Toyota led the market last month, selling 20,107 vehicles ahead of Mazda (7549), Ford (7165), Kia (6120) and Mitsubishi (5559).

The Toyota Hi-Lux was the top-selling model with 5440 ahead of the Ford Ranger (5073), the Toyota Corolla (3732), the MG ZS (3051) and the Toyota Landcruiser (2296).

The November market also showed a sharp 36.3 per cent rise in demand from rental fleets with 6599 vehicles sold as operators prepared for the first major holiday period since COVID-19 border restrictions eased.

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