July marked the highest level of new car sales in the past 6½ years and the heavy trucks sector recorded its highest total in 14½ years, Naamsa reports.

July marked the highest level of new car sales in the past 6½ years and the heavy trucks and buses sector recorded its highest total in 14½ years, Naamsa reported on Monday. On aggregate, new vehicle vehicles sales increased 7,6 per cent compared with the corresponding month last year.


A National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) spokesman said that the recent interest rate cut, expectations of further rate reductions, renewed demand from the car rental sector, and improved affordability on the back of price restraint and special incentive packages offered by manufacturers, had combined to drive new vehicle sales higher during July.


Overall, sales for July stood at 34 077 units - an improvement of 2 418 vehicles compared with the 31 659 new vehicles sold during July 2002.


New car sales during July (22 988 units) reflected a gain of 1 822 units or 8,6 per cent compared with the 21 166 recorded during July last year. Moreover, new car sales during July registered a substantial improvement of 3 123 (15,7 per cent), compared with the 19 865 sales recorded during the previous month of June.


Sales of new light commercial vehicles, bakkies and minibuses during July rose by 434 units (4,7 per cent) compared with the 9 292 light commercial vehicles sold during the corresponding month last year. Light commercial vehicle sales was also an improvement on June’s sales - rising by 10,8 per cent or 953 units.


Meanwhile, sales of medium commercial vehicles declined by 110 units (21,2 per cent), although heavy trucks and buses gained 39,8 per cent or 272 units, compared with the corresponding month last year.


“Prospects for the trucking industry remained above average and sales of medium and heavy commercial vehicles should continue to receive support from positive investment sentiment and replacement demand,” Naamsa said in a statement.


“Sales of new vehicles during the second half of 2003 are expected to receive support from further expected reductions in interest rates, and improvements in new vehicle affordability due to restraint in manufacturers’ price strategies.


“Furthermore, attractive sales incentive packages and an expected improvement in the momentum of the South African economy”, would also have a positive impact on sales during the rest of the year.



:: Click here to access the July new vehicle sales figures.::