GENERAL MOTORS SOUTH AFRICA (GMSA) sold a total of 5791 new vehicles in January in a new vehicle market 9.4 percent lower than January 2007. Underpinning the GMSA figures were sales of 984 Chevrolets, 2950 Opels, 1760 Isuzus and close to 100 Saab, HUMMER and Cadillacs.
The January market continued the downward trend seen in the second half of 2007 with passenger sales showing the greatest decline with 14.6 percent compared to the same month last year. Encouragingly, the light commercial market shed less than 1 percent compared to January 2007 pointing to a more stable commercial sector. In similar positive vein, the truck market grew some 19.2 percent compared to January 2007.
Said Malcolm Gauld, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for GMSA; “January new vehicle sales figures are typically influenced by a multitude of factors. January has fewer real trading days as South Africans slowly return to work after the festive break, accompanied by some resistance to vehicle buying until debt positions are understood following spending over this period. We expect new vehicle demand to remain soft through mid year with a slight recovery thereafter to end the year 2-3 percent down on 2007. Demand for commercial vehicles should remain at current good levels ahead of 2010 related projects and general economic growth.”
Highlights include the following from the Chevrolet brand:
- 984 units sold
- 192 Captivas
- 509 Aveo and Optra
The Opel brand sold:
- Passenger units (Corsa, Astra, Zafira, Meriva, Tigra) – 1220 vehicles
- Corsa sold 908 units
- Corsa Utility with 1730 units.
- 1581 middle and high opulence units sold. The workhorse models, planned for February supply, are yet to come on stream.
Premium brand sales amounted to a total of 97 units from the Saab, HUMMER and Cadillac brands.