South Africa’s new vehicle sales ended one of its most challenging 12 months in the red with a decrease in December. With total sales of 37 493 units, a drop of 10.2% from the 41 683 recorded in 2019, the figure posed by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA) showed a decrease from the 39 315 and 38 752 posted in November and October this year.
Unsurprisingly, the impact of the Coronavirus culminated in the industry posting its lowest figures over the last five years with combined sales last year of 380 449, a massive 29.1% down on the 536 612 recorded in 2019 with passenger vehicle sales the hardest hit at 246 784, a drop of 30.6%.
“The significant fall in aggregate new vehicle sales occurred despite a 300-basis point interest rate cut during the year to a near 50-year low. South Africa entered a recession before the outbreak of Covid-19, which means middle class disposable income was already under pressure prior to the national lockdown,” NAAMSA said.
“The pandemic not only deepened an existing economic recession, but its severe impact resulted in that the domestic new vehicle market in 2020 dropped back to the levels of two decades ago”.
Despite not tabling the final figures, the various segments ended the year mixed with passenger vehicle sales declining by 14.4% and light commercial vehicles improving by 3.2%. Medium and heavy duty commercial vehicles ended the year on a down with sales dropping by 15.6%. A notable departure was exports which improved by 36.3% from 13 560 to 18 479 for the month in spite of ending the year on 271 819, a loss of 29.8% from 2019’s 387 092.
Out of the best performing manufactures, Toyota retained its ranking at the top with 10 161 vehicle sold followed by Volkswagen (6 139), Ford (3 510), Hyundai (2 862), Nissan (2 094), Mercedes-Benz (1 569), Suzuki (1 524), Isuzu (1 444), Renault (1 394) and Kia (1 130).
DECEMBER TOP 50 BEST SELLERS
|1||Toyota Hilux||3 233|
|2||Volkswagen Polo Vivo||2 022|
|3||Ford Ranger||1 840|
|4||Volkswagen Polo||1 569|
|5||Toyota HiAce||1 287|
|6||Isuzu D-Max||1 136|
|7||Toyota Starlet||1 126|
|8||Toyota Corolla Quest||1 004|
|17||Nissan NP300 Hardbody||504|
|22||Hyundai Grand i10||373|
|30||Toyota Land Cruiser||305|
|36||Volkswagen Polo Sedan||251|
|41||BMW 3 Series||187|
|47||Toyota Land Cruiser Prado||138|
|49||Land Rover Defender||131|