“Consumers are clearly looking for value in the new vehicle market,” said Lebogang Gaoaketse, head of marketing and communications at WesBank. “Although demand is in favor of new vehicle deals, average transaction sizes have remained consistent year over year, indicating that affordability remains a major consideration. Consumers are also making the choice when faced with to second-hand offers which show price inflation of more than 20%”.
This may have contributed to the stable performance of new vehicle sales in September, as the market faced two major detractors during the month. “The load shedding will continue to have a negative impact on consumer and business confidence. But it is the second major interest rate increase of 0.75% that should have a more immediate impact on purchase decisions made on funded transactions,” Gaoaketse said. “It should also be considered that Toyota vehicle volumes are returning to more normal levels as production and logistics resume operations.”
New vehicle sales in September ended the month at 47,786 units, up 10.8% year on year and just 440 units ahead of August sales, according to naamsa, the Automotive Business Council. The month’s performance was enough to make it the second best sales month of the year after March.
Light commercial vehicles (LCVs) topped the market to grow 14.9% to 12,573. Dealers appreciated the segment’s growth, reporting non-showroom sales growth of 13.2% to 11,368. There was also a marked improvement (76.3%) in the LCV rental market, albeit at a small volume of 654 units.
Rental demand, however, made a significant contribution to passenger car volumes. Up 22.3%, this added 6,117 units to the total passenger car volume of 25,083, as the segment grew 8.5% year-on-year in September.
“September sales and first three quarter performance will provide an interesting setting for industry experts to discuss the future of the industry later this month during the inaugural South African Motor Week. “, said Gaoaketse.
WesBank joined naamsa and the broader industry at the conference, which takes place at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit and Conference Center from October 24-28. “The participation of members of the International Organization of Motor Manufacturers from 39 countries during the week that this flagship event also has a strong international flavor and shows the importance of the South African automotive industry on the continent.
Year-to-date sales were 0.4% lower than the year in August, with the nine months up 13.4% to 391,936 units from the same period last year last.
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Source: Motor Press