|Car assembly plant Petone, Wellington, NZ. |
Hillman then Mitsubishi cars were assembled there.
Things were changing in the 1980's for the NZ car industry. Import duty on new cars started to be progressively removed and there was a relaxing of restrictions on used cars being imported. The bottom of the chart below shows used import numbers starting to impact on the market. The used cars were mainly from Japan who drive on the same side of the road.
Toyota muscled itself into top spot past both Ford and Mitsubishi. European makes started to make a bit of a comeback as fully built up tariffs were slowly being removed. Assemblers started to assess their operations and GM closed its plants in 1984 and 1990. Lada benefited with a deal between the NZ dairy board and Russia. Butter and meat was exchanged for vehicles. Peugeot was just about in the top 10 by 1989 and Fiat was close behind.
Data source: MIA.
For the start of the series, simply click here for 1975-84.
1990-94 can be accessed here.