THE NAAMSA RE­PORT

Sales stats Au­gust 2017

Driven - - Contents - Re­port by BERNARD HELLBERG SR | Im­age © QUICKPIC

De­spite an un­ex­pected and dis­ap­point­ing drop in lo­cally as­sem­bled ve­hi­cle ex­ports, over­all fig­ures show that Au­gust has been kind to the South African mo­tor in­dus­try with rel­a­tively strong gains in the sales of new pas­sen­ger cars, light com­mer­cials and ex­tra heavy truck sales.

STATE OF THE IN­DUS­TRY

Courtesy Na­tional Au­to­mo­bile As­so­ci­a­tion of South Africa

BENTLEY NEW VE­HI­CLE SALES im­proved by 3,091 units for a to­tal of 49,222, which rep­re­sents an im­prove­ment of 6.7% over Au­gust 2016. The new car mar­ket, with to­tal sales of 32,161, im­proved by 5.4% (1,654 units) com­pared with Au­gust 2016.

It was in the light com­mer­cial sec­tor, how­ever, where the best gains were recorded with the to­tal of 14,834 that showed a 10.8% im­prove­ment (1,448 units) com­pared with the cor­re­spond­ing month last year.

In the Top 10 cat­e­gory, the first seven man­u­fac­tur­ers also recorded gains with Toy­ota once again in the lead with 10,751 to­tal sales. As usual, Hilux was the over­all best seller on 3,392, while Corolla/Auris/ Quest recorded 1,343 sales. For­tuner also hit the four-fig­ure mark (1,060), while 1,161 Etios ver­sions went to new own­ers. RAV sales (650) also im­pressed, es­pe­cially when mea­sured against Volk­swa­gen Tiguan (273), and Hyundai Tucson (425), while Ford’s re­cently re­launched Kuga should, hope­fully for them, im­prove mat­ters sig­nif­i­cantly when com­pared with the rather sad 36 sales recorded in Au­gust.

In sec­ond place, Volk­swa­gen (7,299) is still com­fort­ably ahead of Ford – thanks to their Polo Vivo – which was the top-sell­ing pas­sen­ger car on 2,340 units, with Polo on 2,096. The Group’s Audi divi­sion recorded an im­pres­sive 921 sales, while the ev­er­pop­u­lar Golf 7 recorded 462 sales.

Third place, as usual, went to Ford, which im­proved its to­tal by some 900 units for a to­tal of 6,482 – led by Ranger (2,566),

Fi­esta on 1,071, and EcoS­port (also on 1,071).

The fourth place re­mains in the hands of Nis­san (5,050) with NP200 (1,565), and NP300 (1,145) in the van­guard. Ex­cept for X-Trail (328), and Dat­sun GO (451), sales were unim­pres­sive with the much-touted new Navara only man­ag­ing 175 sales.

Hyundai (3,062) im­proved marginally to slot into fifth place – thanks to the i20 (491), Grand i10 (591), Creta (438), and Tucson (425).

In sixth place, GM/Isuzu (2,971) cel­e­brated its swan song as Gen­eral Mo­tors SA with a to­tal of 252 for the Opel brand, and an ex­cel­lent 1,372 sales by Isuzu KB. Even the soon to be dis­con­tin­ued Chev Ute (677), recorded some de­cent fig­ures.

Mercedes-Benz (2,235) slots into sev­enth po­si­tion with­out dis­clos­ing de­tailed in­for­ma­tion – stay­ing marginally ahead of Re­nault (2,035) which did well on the back of Kwid (784), San­dero II (345), and Duster (271), while man­ag­ing to stay ahead of BMW on 1,815 sales.

Korean car­maker KIA takes ninth place with 1,575 ve­hi­cles sold, while Ja­panese au­tomaker Mazda takes po­si­tion ten with to­tal sales of 1,161 units – bol­stered by good per­for­mances by CX-5 (359), and CX-3 (332) with the Mazda BT-50 (53) mov­ing ahead of the Mitsubishi Triton which recorded 25 sales.

Of the man­u­fac­tur­ers/im­porters fall­ing out­side the Top 10 cat­e­gory, Suzuki (954) did ex­cep­tion­ally well, thanks to some great prod­uct of­fer­ings, and also mov­ing con­stantly ahead of Honda (524).

Jaguar/Land Rover con­tin­ues to hang in there with a to­tal of 431 ve­hi­cles sold, of which 93 ve­hi­cles car­ried the Jaguar name­plate. This was slightly ahead of Lexus, Toy­ota’s lux­ury brand, which recorded 85 sales.

Unusu­ally, Porsche dipped un­der the three-fig­ure mark with a 95 to­tal, while Mitsubishi (113), Subaru (80), and Volvo Cars (162) will have to un­der­take some in­no­va­tive mar­ket­ing cam­paigns to im­prove their re­spec­tive po­si­tions. Volvo will pin its hopes on the pricey S90 and XC90, while Mitsubishi will punt its all-new (and ex­cel­lent) Pajero Sport as a po­ten­tial Ford Ever­est killer – with the Toy­ota For­tuner also in sight. Alarm bells are also ring­ing for Chrysler (153), and Fiat Group (133).

In the über-lux­ury divi­sion, Bentley scored an im­pres­sive eight sales, with Maserati on the same to­tal, two units ahead of Fer­rari’s six cars sold.

NAAMSA con­tin­ues to an­tic­i­pate that the over­all mar­ket for 2017 will be sim­i­lar to the num­bers recorded in 2016 – while there is a slight pos­si­bil­ity of be­tween 1.0% and 1.5% growth. The lo­cal ve­hi­cle ex­port in­dus­try should also ben­e­fit from pos­i­tive global growth prospects.

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