Sales of new cars and commercial vehicles in New Zealand are racing ahead, with a strong September accelerating the gains made earlier this year. September new car volume lifted 23% over the same month last year while commercial vehicles were up a hefty 32%, writes Donn Anderson. For the first nine months of this year, new passenger car sales rose 13.5% on the same period in 2001 while total motor industry volume had improved by 16%. Long-time market leader Toyota took 18.3% of the car market year-to-date, and pulled further ahead in September on the back of buoyant sales of Corolla, Camry and the usually slow selling Australian-built Avalon.