A pre-Football World Cup wave of positive public sentiment underscored May’s new vehicle sales totals, which are almost ten per cent higher than in March, and 35,3 per cent higher than last year.
The positive impact that the 2010 Football World Cup could well increase the propensity to buy new vehicles, McCarthy chief executive Brand Pretorius said in response to the Naamsa new vehicle sales report for last month and the prospects for the rest of the year.
“The market also continues to derive benefit from the prevailing higher level of business confidence and the meaningful economic growth recorded in the first quarter of 2010,” Pretorius said this week.
“Although we recognise that the growth in sales is coming off a very low base, it is gratifying to note that the turnaround in demand is being sustained. This was proved by the 9,7 per cent improvement over April, and a substantial 35,3 per cent increase over the figure for May last year, while the year-to-date figure is a promising 24,6 per cent up on sales for the first five months of 2009,” he added.
Pretorius went on to say that an analysis of the sales mix for May revealed that purchases by fleet owners, which are now renewing aging vehicles in order to ensure the future functional efficiency of their fleets, led to the meaningful increase.
He also said that he expected vehicle sales over the next quarter to be affected adversely by the impact of the recent Transnet strike, as some vehicle manufacturing plants are either on short time or closed as a result of a shortage of imported components.
“The offloading of a significant quantity of fully imported vehicles was also delayed as a result of congestion at our major ports, due to the strike, and this is having a negative effect on the ability of dealers to deliver new vehicles,” said Brand Pretorius.
“We believe year-on-year sales growth will in all probability be less pronounced in the second half of the year as the strong purchases by car rental companies in the run-up to the World Cup will not be repeated. Nevertheless, the McCarthy sales forecast for 2010 is growth of 15 per cent over 2009, compared to the current rate of almost 25.
Click on the DOCUMENTS tab above to download the Naamsa new vehicle sales figures for May 2010.