While on course to be replaced only next year, the aging Isuzu D-Max caused the biggest upset in August when it managed to outsell the Ford Ranger for the second spot on the monthly bakkie sales podium.
In spite of the Toyota Hilux remaining on top as the country’s best-seller with sales of 3,335 units, the dated D-Max posted sales of 1,331 compared to the Ranger’s 1,317, with the half-ton Nissan NP200 placing fourth on 1,167 ahead of its senior sibling, the Nissan Navara on 505, with GWM P-Series (433) and Mahindra Pik-up (315) following.
On the passenger vehicle side, the Volkswagen Polo remained in the lead with sales of 2,090, followed by the Polo Vivo (1,724), Toyota Starlet (1,203), Renault Kwid and Toyota Urban Cruiser (876). Biggest surprise though was the 214 posted by the all-new Toyota Land Cruiser 300.
The results capped off a fourth straight increase despite the cyberattack on state-owned Transnet as well as the remnants of the protest actions that affected KwaZulu-Natal and large parts of Gauteng.
Considerably higher than in past months, the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) recorded overall sales of 41,425 units, an increase of 24.6% over the 33,259 models moved last year.
As in July though, the various segments were mixed with new passenger vehicles recording a massive 40.5% uptake from 19,335 to 27,157, while light commercial vehicles rose by 3.6% from 11,342 to 11,749.
Ending the month in the red, though, were medium and heavy-duty commercial vehicles with the former declining by 7.2% to settle at 719 and the latter by a scant 0.4% to 1,800 units. Despite the increase, exports ended the month in the red for the second consecutive month with a drop of 15.5% from 23,029 to 19,446.
“The return of the adjusted Level 3 lockdown regulations and the improvement to civil stability supported the new vehicle market’s gradual recovery during the month. Positive factors that will stimulate the inevitable new vehicle demand include the positive macro-economic outlook, rejuvenation of rental fleets, subdued consumer price inflation, and interest rates to remain at historically low levels for the foreseeable future,” Naamsa said.
Although the knock-on effects of the economic disruptions caused by the civil unrest in July 2021 and the cyberattack on Transnet operations negatively impacted on the industry’s export performance during the month, the domestic automotive industry will continue to benefit from the strong rebound in global economic activity in 2021 and the favourable conditions abroad”.
Out of the best performing manufacturers, Toyota kept its position at the head of the manufacturers with sales of 10,543, followed by Volkswagen (6,930), Nissan (3,332), Hyundai (2,749), Suzuki (2,470), Ford (2,201), Renault (2,010), Haval (1,885), Kia (1,703) and Isuzu (1,599).
AUGUST TOP 50 BEST SELLERS
|1||Toyota Hilux||3 335|
|2||Volkswagen Polo||2 090|
|3||Volkswagen Polo Vivo||1 724|
|4||Toyota HiAce||1 361|
|5||Isuzu D-Max||1 331|
|6||Ford Ranger||1 317|
|7||Toyota Starlet||1 203|
|8||Nissan NP200||1 167|
|9||Renault Kwid||1 015|
|10||Toyota Urban Cruiser||876|
|12||Toyota Corolla Quest||806|
|19||Hyundai Grand i10||546|
|23||Volkswagen Polo Sedan||473|
|24||Suzuki Vitara Brezza||466|
|38||Toyota Land Cruiser 70-series||297|
|47||Toyota Land Cruiser 300||214|