The Toyota Corolla is New Zealand's most popular car for the 26th year running, latest figures reveal.

Motor Trade Association data showed 3838 new Corollas have sold so far this year, including 629 last month - up 23 per cent from August - association chief executive Warwick Quinn said.

"The second-most-popular new car for the year was Holden Commodore, with 277 new units sold in September and 2259 this year to date."

Third was the Suzuki Swift, with 1973 sold this year, Mr Quinn said.

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The Ford Ranger was the most popular new commercial vehicle, with 4445 sold this year. The Toyota Hilux followed closely behind.

The Nissan Tiida is the most popular imported used car - 5182 have sold so far this year - followed by the Suzuki Swift and the Mazda Axela.

"Overall, the passenger sector saw strong growth, with 11,142 used imported models and 8382 new vehicles sold this year to date," Mr Quinn said.

New commercial vehicle sales had increased by 24 per cent this year.

September was the strongest on record, with 3458 sold.

The used import commercial market also showed growth, with 792 units sold in September, a 58 per cent increase on last year. Holly Bagge