Polaris bucked contracting overall market conditions and enjoyed record amounts of transference from competitor ATV products to its range of 23 models with Roll Over Protection Structures (ROPS) in 2017 to post the biggest year ever recorded by any brand in the history of the Australian off-road vehicle market.
Polaris recorded an industry record 6,583 retail sales in 2017 to post growth of nine percent in a market which was down one percent to again be crowned Australia’s number one off-road vehicle brand, finishing a comprehensive 1,017 units and 4.5 market share points clear of its nearest rival, according to data released by industry data provider Potentiate. The US Powersports giant closed out the year with 29 percent market share, 2.6 market share points ahead of its record results in 2016.
The key growth vehicle for Polaris was undoubtedly its range of 23 models with ROPS, with Polaris growing sales of Ranger side x sides vehicles by 30 percent in 2017 to outpace even the record growth of the Australian side x side market (29.5 percent versus 2016) and post 43 percent share of the utility side x side market. Also leading the charge for Polaris was the unique, single-seat, ROPS-equipped Polaris ACE – its popularity reaching new heights with a staggering 52 percent sales growth versus 2016 and clearly outselling most competitor ATV models.
Polaris boasted five of the top 10 selling side x sides in 2017, with Ranger 1000 Diesel HD taking the mantle as the number one selling side x side vehicle in Australia and Ranger 570 HD, Ranger 1000 and Ranger 500 also featuring prominently.
And whilst the Australian agricultural ATV market experienced a significant 11 percent contraction in 2017 as customers flocked to side x side and Polaris ACE models, Polaris still grew agricultural ATV sales by 21 percent – representing a positive swing of 32 percent – on the back of the durability and versatility of its impressive big bore ATV range, including the unique Polaris UTE and Australia’s biggest selling ATV model, the Sportsman 570.
“Polaris enjoyed 30 percent growth in a booming side x side marketplace in 2017, and at the same time backed this up with 21 percent growth in a rapidly-shrinking ATV market – the only brand to grow agricultural ATV sales,” said Alan Collins, Polaris Australia Country Manager.
“We have seen vast amounts of substitution over the past year as ATV customers have transferred en masse to side x side and ACE products due to their capabilities and outstanding safety technology. Based on the fact that Polaris has simultaneously grown both its side x side and agricultural ATV sales, the majority of this transference has come from customers getting off competitor ATVs and onto a Polaris.”
2018 is also the 20-year anniversary of the Polaris Ranger and the company recently built its one millionth Ranger vehicle.
“This pedigree certainly provides some context as to why we are the most trusted side x side brand in the world,” Collins said.
“At the end of the day, we have an industry-leading range to meet evolving customer needs, headlined by our 23 models with ROPS which becomes even more relevant when you consider the huge market shift to side x side vehicles. People are voting with their wallets for the choice that Polaris offers.”
Polaris credits a combination of utility and safety technology as one of the key factors in the outstanding growth of its side x side business.
“Our Ranger line-up offers industry-leading features and capabilities which are relevant to Australian farmers combined with safety technology such as certified ROPS, SpeedKey, seat belt interlock, side needs and 4-Wheel Descent Control. This is all supported by Polaris’ world-class engineering and know-how gained from two decades in the side x side business and back-up from a nationwide dealer network,” Collins said.