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SA vehicle sales on the up?

2014-04-02 08:27

VEHICLE EXPORTS TO IMPROVE: Naamsa reports that vehicle exports should benefit from improving global economic conditions provided SA does not experience more domestic supply disruptions. Image: AFP

New vehicle sales for March held up reasonably well and were virtually unchanged compared to the same period in 2013, reports the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA (Naamsa).

In March 2014, 55 363 new vehicles were registered which was an 87-vehicle decline or 0.2% drop compared to the 55 450 vehicles sold in March 2013.


The consumer-driven car segment recorded a year-on-year decline of 2.2%.

Naamsa said in a statement: "Prospects for the balance of the year would continue to be affected by subdued economic growth, above inflation new vehicle price increases as a result of exchange rate weakness, and upward pressure on interest rates.

"Consumer sentiment remained under pressure due to high levels of indebtedness, sharp increases in energy and transport costs and e-tolling in Gauteng."

It said these factors would influence consumer demand in the case of the new car market.

Naamsa said: "The new car market remained under pressure during March 2014 and at 36 798 units reflected a decline of 814 units or a fall of 2.2% compared to the 37 612 cars sold in March 2013."

Export sales reflected a decline of 3122 vehicles or 11.2% fall from 27 782 vehicles exported in March 2013  to 24 660 units in 2014.

Industry sales comprised of 85.8% dealer sales, 5% to government, 4.7% vehicle rental industry and 4.5% to industry corporate fleets.

Domestic sales of light commercial vehicles, bakkies and mini-buses were up 3.7% compared to the same period in 2013.

Vehicle sales in the medium and heavy truck segments reflected a mixed performance with a decline of 6.1% in medium commercial vehicles and a 14.9% increase in heavy trucks and buses.


Naamsa said: "Domestic trading conditions were anticipated to remain difficult with pressure on margins, particularly in the new car and light commercial vehicle sectors.

"As a result of the challenging macro-environment, general consensus was that the domestic market in 2014 was likely to be flat and might even show modest declines in the various segments compared to 2013."

Naamsa reports that vehicle exports should benefit from improving global economic conditions and barring domestic supply disruptions, could show strong growth during the second half of 2014, particularly in respect of vehicle exports to Asia, Africa and Europe.

SA vehicles sales - March 2014

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