- Some top-20 models are missing spec
- Delays vary from a few months to a year
- Check to see what the impact is on the car you're after
When the COVID-19 pandemic was really just starting to pick up speed around the world, many could not have predicted how far-reaching its impact would be on buying new cars.
There have been semiconductor chip shortages, shipping problems, sickness and isolation issues affecting manufacturers' ability to keep their production lines going – you name it, it's happened.
So with all that going on, how do you get your hands on a new car, and if you want one of Australia's top 20 best-selling vehicles, what do you need to know about the lengthy wait times and lost features occurring across many models?
Let's take a look.
NOTE: This information is correct as of October 15, 2022. This article will be regularly reviewed and amended as new details come to light.
UPDATED: October 15, 2022
Top 20 models
Toyota has had six cars consistently in the top 20 sold in Australia in the last six months; its popular HiLux ute, mid-sized RAV4 SUV, Corolla hatchback, and the LandCruiser Prado and Kluger large SUVs.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Toyota was 244 days – compared to 172 days in January 2022.
The quickest to get hold of is the Kluger large SUV at 124 days, followed by the HiLux with an average 142-day wait time.
The worst affected are the Camry, RAV4 and Corolla, with buyers required to wait, on average, 297, 274 and 270 days, respectively – or longer.
A spokesperson for the Japanese marque said the brand has been experiencing longer wait times than usual for new-vehicle deliveries across its range due to "global supply challenges".
For most models, there is an average wait time of six months or less. But four models do have longer leads: the LandCruiser 300 Series has an extended delay averaging nine months, and the RAV4 Hybrid has an average wait time of 12 months or longer.
Toyota Australia has suspended orders for the LandCruiser 70 due to ongoing supply constraints.
“We’ve paused that car. It’s part of the transparency for the customers. I wouldn’t see that car coming off [pause] for the next six months at least, and maybe beyond that”, said vice president of sales, marketing and franchise operations, Sean Hanley.
“If we can improve [70 Series] production then certainly, but until we clear the current order bank, we can’t do that.”
Earlier this year, Toyota said it had not de-specced any of its models for the Australian market and "has no plans to do so" to cut wait times down.
"Demand for new vehicles is at unprecedented levels. In Australia, to support the strong demand, Toyota Australia been working closely with our global production teams to secure as many vehicles for our market as possible," a spokesperson told Wheels.
"Due to the ever evolving nature of this situation Toyota dealers are best placed to continue to provide updates to our customers on delivery timeframes for individual orders."
In comparison with Toyota, Ford has just one model in the top 20 – the Ranger ute.
The next-generation 2023 Ford Ranger has launched in Australia with strong demand, meaning newly-placed orders are likely to see an extended wait time.
A spokesperson for Ford Australia told Wheels more than 17,000 customers have ordered a 2023 Ranger, with approximately 4000 orders for the Ranger Raptor.
The company has also recorded 2000-plus orders for the related Everest body-on-frame SUV.
“We’ve worked with our team to do everything possible to get as many Rangers, Ranger Raptors and Everests as we can to customers as soon as we can,” the spokesperson added.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Ford was 192 days – compared to 94 days in January 2022.
The quickest arrivals are four-cylinder examples of the closely-related Ranger ute and Everest large SUV.
In fact, Ford Australia claims it has ample supply of the newly-launched four-cylinder Ranger and Everest – and less availability of the flagship six-cylinder models.
Due to strong customer demand for the 3.0-litre V6 engine, Ford Australia says it has secured additional volume of the six-cylinder diesel Sport and Wildtrak, and more examples of the Wildtrak with the Premium Pack. These extra units will be produced from the fourth quarter of 2022 (October to December inclusive).
Ford has seen “very strong demand for the optional Premium Pack on the Next-Gen Ranger Wildtrak, which will take some time to work through. If customers choose to remove the Premium Pack from their order, they will be able to take delivery of their Ranger sooner.”
Single-cab and dual cab-chassis variants are now available, with supply initially focused on bi-turbo and V6 dual-cab pick-up variants.
Space cab models have unique specifications for Australia and will become available in late 2022.
In addition, Ford Australia has launched a webpage outlining up-to-date delivery information across its entire vehicle line-up.
"We apologise to any customers who are facing longer than anticipated wait times for their new vehicles," a Ford spokesperson said earlier this year.
"We are working hard to get as many vehicles to Australia as possible, and reiterate that as the supply situation continues to evolve, we encourage customers to reach out to their local dealer, who is best placed to advise on local availability and wait times."
Japanese carmaker Mitsubishi has three players making regular appearances in the top 20.
This includes the Triton ute and Outlander and ASX SUVs, while the Triton-based Pajero Sport has also made the list in recent months.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Mitsubishi was 151 days – compared to 95 days in January 2022.
The quickest arrival is the Eclipse Cross small SUV with an average wait of 51 days, followed by the Outlander at 104 days.
Meanwhile, the worst-affected models in Mitsubishi’s lineup are the ASX small SUV and Triton ute, with a wait time of 165 days and 160 days, respectively.
According to the company's local arm, supply has improved for the Eclipse Cross, Outlander and Pajero Sport, while the ASX and Triton should improve by the end of 2022.
Regarding the Outlander, specification has already been revised for MY22.5, and the company says it will provide updates if further changes need to be made.
Earlier this year, it revealed the entry-level Outlander ES will now only have a one-touch power window operation for the driver's side, rather than both sides as per MY22 models.
For the LS, it now goes without a powered tailgate, stepping back down to a manual operation, while the Aspire's fully-digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster is downgraded to a 7-inch unit.
Mitsubishi has also bumped up the price of its range-topping Exceed and Exceed Tourer variants, with increased premiums of $500 and $1000, respectively, due to higher production costs.
A spokesperson for Mitsubishi Motors Australia told Wheels stock of the Outlander Aspire, Exceed and Exceed Tourer is constrained, with examples likely to arrive in October and November, respectively.
The entry-level Outlander ES and LS are more readily-available.
"The stock situation is constantly evolving and that information we provide is general in nature and not specific to individual orders, who may have a longer or shorter wait time depending on their chosen colour or accessory choices, for example," a spokesperson told us.
"We’d encourage individuals to communicate with their Mitsubishi dealer for their specific needs."
The average wait time for a Mazda, according to Price My Car, is now 98 days – compared to 71 days at the start of this year.
The quickest to get hold of is the the top-selling CX-5 mid-sized SUV at 66 days, followed by the popular CX-30 small SUV at 96 days.
The worst affected is the brand's BT-50 ute, which has a wait of 162 days.
Mazda Australia has issued a stop-sale on 2.0-litre variants of the 3 and CX-30, excluding Astina grades, due to supply constraints with limited stock available on the ground.
Order books are expected to resume in the coming months, with buyers currently limited to the less-popular G25 and X20 grades.
While this data is given on estimated wait times for the CX-5, CX-30 and BT-50 in the table below, Mazda Australia said dealers are best placed to answer customer questions about delivery updates and all model lines are currently well-stocked.
"Restrictions to the global supply chain continue to affect delivery times across the automotive industry, nevertheless we continue to work closely with our dealer partners to deliver customer orders as soon as possible," a spokesperson told Wheels.
"We are focused on delivering customer orders and meeting demand for top selling models, with a view to further improving stock availability within this year."
Since last speaking with the brand, we've been told it cannot give an exact delay update as it would be out of date very quickly.
A spokesperson for the brand reiterated its stance of encouraging customers to speak directly with a dealer to confirm more specific information based on their choice of model, variant and trim etc.
We contacted several Mazda dealers who told us the situation is changing almost daily, but more cars were becoming available.
Isuzu Ute Australia's (IUA) top 20 offering is its D-Max ute, although the MU-X body-on-frame SUV also occasionally appears.
According to the firm's UK arm, the ongoing global semiconductor shortage continues to affect vehicle supply, and its waiting list has recently been stretched out to as much as a year.
Prospective buyers in the UK have been told to "start discussions with their local Isuzu dealer as soon as possible" if they want to receive their vehicle by the end of 2022 or start of 2023 – the main concern being that higher-spec variants, which are equipped with more technology, are the most likely grades to be impacted by the chip crisis.
But what does that mean for customers in Australia?
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for an Isuzu was 213 days – compared to 169 days in January 2022.
The quickest to get hold of is the D-Max ute, but even that's not a short wait at 167 days. To take delivery of the MU-X SUV, expect an average delay of 264 days.
"Wait time on the Isuzu D-Max and MU-X depends on vehicle specification, colour and accessories ordered," a spokesperson told Wheels.
"Some models are available and in stock currently, while there continue to be ongoing supply delays, especially on certain higher-grade models.
"The supply delays are mainly due to the unprecedented levels of demand and vehicle component supply delays caused by the global semiconductor shortage and ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
"IUA and all related parties continue to follow up this matter, and we remain committed to keeping Dealers informed on their vehicle orders, so they can pass this information onto their customers as quickly as possible."
Hyundai has three consistent top 20 models; the i30 sedan/hatch, Tucson medium SUV and Kona small SUV.
Though the Korean marque says it has a good and continuous supply of cars coming into the country, around 20,000 in a two-month period either arriving, in transit, in production or scheduled, it also has a large backlog of orders to fill.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Hyundai was 137 days – compared to 108 days in January 2022.
The quickest arrivals are the Hyundai Tucson diesel and Staria passenger and Staria Load commercial vans, at three months – or 96 days – or less.
The worst affected is the brand's European-sourced i30 N hot hatch, with a one-year or longer wait for an order placed today. Those with an existing order are also in for a similar wait, depending on when their deposit was placed.
As of late August, the indicative wait time for a newly-placed order is as follows:
- i30 hatch – more than three months
- i30 Sedan – more than five months
- Kona – more than four months
- Tucson (petrol) – more than six months
- Tucson (diesel) – less than three months.
Buyers with a current order should expect to receive their vehicle within the next three to six months, with good supply available for the diesel-powered Tucson medium SUV – and a longer wait for the petrol Tucson.
This is largely due to the 3000 diesel Tucson examples that arrived in Australia earlier this year, with diesel sales experiencing a record high with 962 units shifted in May – accounting for 56 per cent.
All units were available to order for immediate delivery, roughly split evenly between the mid-spec Elite and flagship Highlander, with N Line supply also available.
In addition, the firm said none of its models are being altered due to the chip shortage, but supply of some is better than others and availability will depend on the model and variant being sought (including trim or colour).
It added that the logistics team is "actively prioritising vehicle allocation to existing customer orders (ensuring we limit customer wait times as much as possible)".
“[Hyundai Australia has] good, continuous supply of Hyundai models arriving the country, however given the increase in customer demand for our products, we have a large backlog of customer orders we need to fill,” a spokesperson told Wheels earlier this year.
“We continually have around 20,000 vehicles that are deliverable within a two-month window (this includes vehicles in the country, in transit, in production and scheduled for production). “Availability in dealerships will vary depending on model and variant (engine, trim grade, colour, region).”
The MG ZS small SUV – available in both petrol and all-electric form – has been climbing up the sales charts in Australia for several months now, joined occasionally by the small MG 3 hatchback and larger HS SUV.
According to MG, it is working amongst challenging market conditions when it comes to supply, particularly on the logistics side – but has still managed to land almost 4000 cars a month in Australia for the last year.
It has no plans to modify the specifications of any MG vehicles.
"We are working closely with our supply chain to resolve any bottlenecks and minimise the impact of any delays on customer orders wherever possible,” a spokesperson told us.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for an MG was 50 days – compared to 56 days in January 2022.
The quickest arrival is the MG 3 with an average wait of 25 days.
Meanwhile, the worst affected in MG's lineup is the ZST, with a wait time of 80 days.
Although not always in the best-sellers' list each month, Kia's most popular offerings are the Cerato sedan/hatch and the new-generation Sportage medium SUV.
A spokesperson for Kia Australia said the company is “in constant dialogue with head office to access additional stock to positively impact wait times”.
“Estimating wait times isn’t straight forward as the situation is so fluid and there are many variables to take into consideration such as model, specification, colour and production scheduling,” they added.
Local supply of the Sportage has improved, while "there is… Cerato stock available on ground with the majority of supply focused on fulfilling backorders."
Earlier this year, the company said there were no plans to remove any features from the Cerato range.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Kia was 151 days – compared to 181 days in January 2022.
The quickest arrival is the Stonic light SUV with an average wait of 71 days, followed by the Rio at 87 days.
Meanwhile, the worst-affected models in Kia’s lineup are the Stinger and Sportage, with a wait time of 208 days and 162 days, respectively.
At this point in time, Carnival petrol variants will have a longer wait time than diesel models.
Other popular vehicles
A regular among the list of Australia's favourite new cars each month is the Nissan Navara ute.
Nissan Australia said it still has stock of the Navara available across its dealer network, with more continuing to arrive.
A spokesperson said wait times will depend on factors such as variant and location.
Like other brands, it encourages customers to contact dealers for more information.
A more accessible version of the Navara Warrior, based on the SL grade, has launched in Australia, with fewer components required compared to the range-topping PRO-4X Warrior.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Nissan was 161 days – compared to 123 days in January 2022.
The Navara ute and Patrol upper-large SUV face an average wait time of 191 days and 141 days, respectively.
Though not always in the top hit list every month, the Subaru Forester mid-sized SUV remained popular enough that it ranked in the top 10 sales chart for January 2022.
However, stock of the model-year 2022 Subaru Forester has now sold out in Australia, with the forthcoming MY23 version set to arrive in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Before the allocated MY22 Forester stock was accounted for, Subaru told Wheels wait times of around four to five months were expected, with delays depending on choice of colour and variant.
It has no plans to change specification for the Forester due to supply constraints, however, pricing has increased for MY23 following recent hikes across the BRZ, Outback, Impreza and XV line-ups.
"Subaru Australia continues to work closely with Subaru Corporation to deliver vehicles to customers as soon as possible," said Subaru spokesperson.
"The global automotive industry is currently facing a variety of challenges. However, we are committed to supporting our customers who are notified by their retailer with the latest information regarding their new vehicle order.
According to Price My Car, the average wait time in September for a Subaru was 108 days – compared to 90 days in January 2022.
Top 20 models – sales
|Toyota LandCruiser Prado||17,626||1698|
Top 20 models – wait times
|Model||Wait times, October 2022||Wait times, January 2022|
|Toyota HiLux||142 days||143 days|
|Ford Ranger||197 days||69 days|
|Toyota RAV4||274 days||240 days|
|Mitsubishi Triton||160 days||91 days|
|Mazda CX-5||66 days||63 days|
|Isuzu D-Max||167 days||142 days|
|Toyota Corolla||270 days||121 days|
|Toyota LandCruiser Prado||Not available||Not available|
|Hyundai i30||142 days||93 days|
|MG ZS||ZS: 56 days; ZST: 80 days||104 days, in March 2022|
|Mitsubishi Outlander||104 days||79 days|
|Kia Sportage||162 days||159 days|
|Hyundai Tucson||132 days||125 days|
|Mazda CX-30||96 days||55 days|
|MG 3||25 days||67 days|
|Kia Cerato||142 days||77 days|
|Toyota Kluger||124 days||51 days|
|Mazda BT-50||162 days||76 days|
|Hyundai Kona||149 days||130 days|
|Mitsubishi ASX||165 days||84 days|
|*data according to Price My Car|
Top 20 models – missing features
|Mitsubishi Triton||Proprietary infotainment system – GLX and GLX+ feature an aftermarket 7-inch touchscreen (MY23)|
|Toyota LandCruiser Prado||None|
|Mitsubishi Outlander||MY22.5 – ES only has one-touch power operated window on driver's side, LS loses its power tailgate, Aspire deletes 12.3-inch instrument cluster for 7-inch unit|
|Mazda CX-30||None – limited supply for G20 variants|