South Africa’s 10 best selling SUVs in the first half of 2023

Published Jul 14, 2023


SUVs continue to gain popularity in South Africa as traditional hatchbacks and sedans take a back seat.

Consider that in 2021 SUVs and crossovers overtook five-door hatchbacks to become the country’s most popular passenger vehicle type, and they cemented that lead in 2022, growing their share by a further 5.6% to account for just over half of all passenger vehicle sales.

But which are the most popular SUV models in Mzansi?

We stitched together the Naamsa numbers for the first half of 2023 and the Toyota Corolla Cross emerged as the top seller by a huge margin with a total volume of 10 604 units, which equates to about 1 767 per month.

Runner up was the recently-refreshed Toyota Fortuner with its volume of 5 995, or 999 per month, while the final podium spot was a Chinese contender in the form of the Chery Tiggo 4 Pro, at 4 954.

The Haval Jolion, also from China, took fourth spot, ahead of the Volkswagen T-Cross and Renault Kiger. See the top 10 below.

SA’s Top-Selling SUVs: Jan-Jun 2023

1. Toyota Corolla Cross - 10 604 (1 767 per month)

2. Toyota Fortuner - 5 995 (999)

3. Chery Tiggo 4 Pro - 4 954 (826)

4. Haval Jolion - 4 785 (798)

5. Volkswagen T-Cross - 4 149 (692)

6. Renault Kiger - 4 053 (676)

7. Nissan Magnite - 3 870 (645)

8. Toyota Urban Cruiser - 2 905 (484)

9. Kia Sonet - 2 902 (484)

10. Haval H6 - 2 633 (439)

Interestingly the Toyota Urban Cruiser, which often recorded monthly volumes of around 2 000 units last year, has fallen down the rankings.

This is likely due to stock shortages as the previous model ran out during the first few months of the year, while the new - and somewhat larger and more expensive - replacement model has failed to set the sales charts alight thus far, averaging 437 units a month in the last quarter.

What also became apparent when crunching the numbers was that midsize SUVs such as the Toyota Rav4 have fallen in popularity, likely due to higher pricing.

The Rav4 achieved sales of just 586 units from January to June, and the most popular vehicle in that segment was the Volkswagen Tiguan at 1 963. The Hyundai Tucson and Mazda CX-5 didn’t fare too well either, with respective sales volumes of 848 and 831 units in H1.

Among the body-on-frame SUVs, the Toyota Fortuner was far in the lead, but Ford’s Everest did see an improvement in volumes, with H1 sales of 1 440, while the diminutive Suzuki Jimny managed a healthy volume of 1 150 units.

IOL Motoring