April was a bad month for bakkies, but Toyota's Hilux still dominated the overall sales race, albeit only narrowly beating the VW Polo Vivo.
April was a bad month for bakkies, but Toyota's Hilux still dominated the overall sales race, albeit only narrowly beating the VW Polo Vivo.
The Volkswagen Polo Vivo was by far the most popular passenger car in April 2019.
The Volkswagen Polo Vivo was by far the most popular passenger car in April 2019.

Johannesburg - South African new car sales saw a surprising (albeit modest) return to growth in April, but there wasn’t any good news for bakkies and other light commercial vehicles, according to the latest sales figures released by Naamsa.

The overall new vehicle market recorded an aggregate sales figure of 36 794 units last month, which was a 0.7 percent improvement over the same month last year. Of those, 24 989 were passenger vehicles, representing a year-on-year improvement of 3.9 percent, while light commercial vehicles, at 9810 units, saw an 8.1 percent decline over April 2018.

This trend was reversed in the medium and heavy commercial vehicle segments, which recorded respective year-on-year gains of 19.7 percent and 7.8 percent.

However, the real champion was export sales, which improved by 53.8 percent year-on year, to total 33 090.

What the experts said

Mark Dommisse, Chairman of the National Automobile Dealers’ Association:

“Whilst there is demand for new cars, consumer decisions are being delayed due to continuous fuel increase, especially in the premium passenger segment. The pressure on consumer spending is ongoing. The 9% increase in fuel last month tied to increases in municipal rates and Eskom tariffs, as well as the upcoming elections, means that sentiment will remain under strain for the medium term.”

Ghana Msibi, WesBank Executive Head of Motor:

“While the market will no doubt be reassured by this good news, it should not grasp at any major turn-arounds just yet. The April market total of 36 794 units was still way behind March sales of 47 687.

“Household budgets are continuing to remain under pressure and consecutive months of petrol price increases will no doubt begin to take their toll. Combined with the natural uncertainty ahead of May elections, the April sales performance becomes even more reassuring as these conditions could easily have resulted in the continuing decline trend.”

Naamsa:

“Consumer and business confidence levels are low, household disposable income remains under pressure due to rising costs of living and lower domestic and global economic growth forecasts which continues to signal moderation in new vehicle sales.

“However, constructive political and economic reforms after the country’s general election on 8 May 2019 could see an improved second half performance in terms of new vehicle sales.”

The Volkswagen Polo Vivo was by far the most popular passenger car in April 2019.

50 TOP SELLING VEHICLES: APRIL 2019

1 Toyota Hilux 2411
2 Volkswagen Polo Vivo 2350
3 Ford Ranger 1635
4 Isuzu D-Max / KB 1242
5 Toyota Quantum 1236
6 Volkswagen Polo 1165
7 Toyota Rav4 839
8 Toyota Fortuner 816
9 Ford EcoSport 742
10 Toyota Etios 719
11 Hyundai Grand i10 718
12 Nissan NP200 715
13 Nissan NP300 Hardbody 515
14 Renault Kwid 472
15 Datsun Go 453
16 Renault Clio 452
17 Volkswagen Tiguan 442
18 Toyota Corolla Quest 436
19 Ford Figo 426
20 Kia Picanto 402
21 Renault Sandero 422
22 Volkswagen Golf 391
23 Suzuki Swift 383
24 Hyundai Tucson 372
25 BMW 3 Series 354
26 Hyundai i20 346
27 Ford Everest 345
28 Mazda CX-5 338
29 Renault Duster 322
30 Mazda CX-3 321
31 Datsun Go + 296
32 Toyota Avanza 286
33 Toyota Yaris 284
34 Kia Rio 266
35 Hyundai H100 Bakkie 248
36 Nissan X-Trail 244
37 Hyundai Creta 235
38 Volkswagen Polo Sedan 235
39 Nissan Qashqai 229
40 Volkswagen Caddy 225
41 Mazda2 216
42 Mahindra Scorpio Pik-Up 208
43 Toyota Rush 205
44 Toyota CH-R 198
45 Ford Fiesta 193
46 Nissan Almera 190
47 Kia Sportage 183
48 Nissan Navara 177
49 BMW X3 170
50 Hyundai Accent 162

IOL Motoring