The New Zealand market for new vehicles in September remained close to the seasonal levels prevailing over the last four years. New car sales, at 7,077, were 4% up on August but 5% down on September 2006.

2,085 new commercial vehicles were sold in September, 4% behind August but 7.8% ahead of September last year.

Year to date, 57,264 new cars have been sold, just seven units ahead of the same period last year, but new commercial vehicle sales, at 18,928, were 820 units (4.5%) ahead of the first nine months of 2006.

"It's business as usual," said Perry Kerr, CEO of the Motor Industry Association. "We're encouraged by the continuing confidence that the public is demonstrating in the safety, environmental and value benefits of new vehicle ownership."

Toyota's march towards full year market leadership continued, with an impressive 22% of the total market in September. Ford held onto second place overall, but remained in third place behind Holden in passenger cars despite a resurgence in September.

Corolla wrested individual model leadership from Holden's Commodore for the month but the large GM car remained well on top year to date.