By AJ Bajo
Hopes for the automotive industry’s recovery from a lethargic 2018 was bolstered by the double-digit growth rate in July car sales.
The Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers’ Association (TMA) reported a 13.5 percent increase in cars sold during the month to 31,810 units from 28,038 units in the same month in 2018.
CAMPI and TMA also posted a 3.16 percent increase in auto sales from the January to June period to 205,945 units from 199,628 units sold in the same seven-month period last year.
However, sales in July which is one of the lean months of the industry were 0.4 percent lower from the 31,950 units registered in June.
“It is noteworthy that positive factors such as continued and strong sales campaigns and stable supply of units have outweighed the unfavorable effects of the off-peak season to the overall sales growth,” CAMPI president Atty. Rommel Gutierrez said in CAMPI-TMA’s monthly report.
“Historically, July is considered as one of the lean months of the industry. Nonetheless, we are optimistic that if we are able to sustain this growth trend, we will be able to exceed our sales performance of last year,” he added.
Commercial vehicles boosted sales in the month of July, growing 6.4 percent annually to 22,413 units from 21,063 units. This is followed by sales in the light commercial vehicle segment, up 12.2 percent to 17,677 units from 15,749 units in the same month of 2018.
The passenger car segment booked fastest growth rate of 34.7 percent in July to 9,397 units from 6,975 units.
Meanwhile, there were 9.3 percent less buyers of AUV at 3,624 units from 3,995 units. Year-to-date, AUV sales also recorded the biggest drop of 28.7 percent to 19,771 units from 32,274 units last year.
Light trucks sales were also down 17.3 percent to 608 units from 735 units in July last year. Following suit were category four trucks and buses which registered a 17.1 percent decline in sales to 377 units from 455 units and category five trucks and buses, down 1.6 percent to 127 units from 129 units.
In terms of market leadership, Toyota Motors Philippines Corp. still led the industry with 25.3 percent higher sales in July, to 14,120 units from 11,265 units last year. The industry leader’s market share also surged 44.39 percent in the month.
Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. followed with 5,507 units sold, 3.5 percent more from 5,321 units sold last year. Nissan Philippines, Inc. is still third with 27.3 percent higher sales, or 3,651 units from 2,869 units.
Rounding up the top five were Suzuki Phils, Inc. at fourth with sales up 41.1 percent and Ford Motor Company Phils, Inc., whose sales were down 14.2 percent.