|The Ford Falcon was the best selling car in 1999|
New Zealand new car sales were subdued during this period while used imports flourished. The economic reforms stalled somewhat due to external forces and that kept things muted. This was a time that the assembly industry ended. Ford and Mazda stopped it's operation in 1997, joined in 1998 by Mazda, Mitsubishi, Honda, Nissan and Toyota.
Was it good that NZ lost it's assembly industry? Well it was only ever from CKD kits and not real manufacturing so it wasn't cost effective. It could therefore only survive with protection and the government was removing that. It was only a matter of time.
Japanese brands seemed to consolidate their position even more, with only Ford and Holden offering much resistance. MG Rover and Land Rover were doing well and if combined exceeded the thousand mark. A few of the larger brands also did well in this time such as GM Holden, Nissan, Hyundai , Daewoo and Suzuki. In 1999, the top selling models were the Ford Falcon (4,311), Holden Commodore (3,511) and the Toyota Corolla (3,475).