Tractor Sales shine brightly in 2020

By: Gary Northover, Executive Director of the Tractor & Machinery Association

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Gary Northover of the Tractor & Machinery Association looks back on 2020, which saw tractor sales break through the 13,000 unit mark

Tractor Sales shine brightly in 2020
Tractor sales Australia-wide were up 24 per cent in 2020, compared to the 2019 total

 

Sales of tractors and other agricultural equipment in 2020 reached levels not seen since the 1980s, finishing well above the 13,000-unit mark.

December delivered sales 27 per cent above the same month in 2019, leading to the 12 month period being up 24 per cent on last year.

Much has been said about the level of optimism in the agricultural sector with a great harvest now largely completed, supported by the Instant Asset Write Off Scheme which has now been extended to June 2022.


Check out the November sales data here


Concerns surrounding supply from overseas sources are generally being dealt with as dealers work to deliver on customers’ requirements.

The year saw a continuation of recent trends as demand for bigger horsepower machines increased along with demand for low emissions engines.

The Used Equipment Market, supported by the Instant Asset Write Off Scheme, has been strong and finance rates continue to be set at extremely attractive levels.

Activity in December was strong in most states with NSW again the standout, up 66 per cent on the same time last year and now with sales up 40 per cent on 2019. Victoria reported a solid lift up 17 per cent in the month and finished 22 per cent ahead for the year, meanwhile Queensland was up 31 per cent to be 18 per cent up for the year.

Western Australia sales picked up 7 per cent in December, putting the state’s 2020 sales in line with 2019, while sales in South Australia were steady ending 27 per cent ahead and Tasmania also finished the year 27 per cent ahead.

 

The increase in sales numbers is again due almost entirely to the ongoing strength in the smaller end of the market supported by the Instant Asset Write off scheme.

The under 40hp (30kw) range was up 72 per cent in December and ended 36 per cent ahead for the year.  The 40 to 100hp (30-75kw) range was again up strongly 16 per cent in the month, 27 per cent ahead for the year.

The 100 to 200hp (75-150kw) category was again up – 28 per cent and ended the year up 26 per cent whilst sales in the large 200 hp (150kw) Plus range dipped again leaving this category 8 per cent for 2020.

The much talked about supply challenges have been felt across all size categories and for the first time in a long while, dealers have been forced to move stock around amongst themselves to satisfy orders.

Pleasingly, most dealerships are now returning to full staffing levels which will assist in meeting the challenges ahead.

Sales of Combine Harvesters experienced a late year flourish in support of one of the best harvests in recent memory and finished the year 25 per cent ahead of last year.

Baler sales continued their boom run – now about three years old –up 35 per cent for the year whilst sales of Out - Front Mowers are flying, now 40 per cent ahead of the same time last year.

As we look forward to 2021, most suppliers are predicting a continuation of the strong levels of demand underpinned by both the ongoing favourable weather conditions and the Instant Asset Write Off Scheme.

We do however expect to see some unevenness in supply as the main manufacturing centres in North America and Europe continue to struggle with the impacts of the Coronavirus.

This may lead to some "lumpiness" in sales reporting, however, we expect next year to be another strong one.

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