NEW VEHICLE SALES GROWTH SLOW DOWN, TREND REMAINS POSITIVE IN FEBRUARY
- Toyota top seller in all external vehicle sales channels
- Strong export growth spearheaded by Toyota
- Hilux returns to top spot as best-selling vehicle in South Africa
|Market segment||2012||2013||% change|
|Passenger vehicles||36 362||36 666||0.8%|
|Light commercial vehicles||13 554||14 190||4.7%|
|Medium commercial vehicles||939||868||-7.6%|
|Heavy commercial vehicles||459||422||-8.1%|
|Extra Heavy commercial vehicles||981||964||-1.7%|
|Vehicle exports||22 554||27 611||22.4%|
|Overall market (local)||52 388||53 220||1.6%|
The Toyota Hilux led a light commercial vehicle resurgence in February to push sales growth for the month past the comparable month in 2012. February’s total vehicle market of 53 220 units market grew by 1.6% compared to the same month last year, but it was 3.14% lower than January 2013.
According to the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) vehicle sales momentum slowed in February after a very buoyant January. This was countered by positive sales growth amongst light commercial vehicles and notably the Hilux with sales of 3 500 units.
Toyota South Africa Motors retailed 11 207 vehicles in February and exported a further 8 305 units to markets in Europe and Africa. An analysis of all channels show that Toyota retailed the most number of units through all channels, apart from single unit sales, which is a measure of a manufacturer’s internal sales.
“The market is starting to show its true colours,” says Dr Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota South Africa Motors and President of Naamsa.
“January sales are often skewed by delayed December registrations and late Christmas sales, so the industry keeps a keen eye on February sales to better gauge vehicle sales momentum at the start of the new year. With total sales of 53 220 units in February we are confident in our prediction that vehicle sales will grow in 2013, but at a much slower pace than in 2012.”
Toyota performed well in February with significant growth in Corolla (1 048 units), Etios (2 204 units), Fortuner (927 units) and Quantum and Ses’fikile (1 209) sales to support the success of the Hilux.
In the commercial vehicle market sales dropped in all major segments except the medium heavy commercial vehicle market (MCV), although sales in the various segments are small enough to be statistically skewed by one or two large fleet orders.
According to Dr Van Zyl the high level of competition on retail level will continue to drive vehicle sales, while further pressure on disposable income (such as increased fuel prices and higher CO2 emissions), will continue to influence vehicle choice. As an example the sale of the Toyota Etios and other popular Sub B segment vehicles continued to perform exceptionally well.
“Going forward we expect less growth from the delayed 2007 replacement cycle that fuelled 2012 sales growth. This should be countered by strong retail competition amongst all brands and even more new vehicle introductions in the run up to the Johannesburg International Motor Show in October,” says Dr Van Zyl.