Vehicle sales zoomed 25.4% in March
Sales of vehicle assemblers in the month of March zoomed 25.4 percent to 19,173 units—the highest monthly volume posted by the domestic auto industry to date, according to the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. (Campi).
Amid robust sales so far this year, the industry “may adjust” upward its 2014 sales projection of 230,000 vehicles, Campi president Rommel T. Gutierrez said in a text message.
Campi’s joint report with the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) released on Friday showed that last month’s sales not only exceeded the 15,292 units sold in March last year but also were 13.9-percent higher than the 16,828 sold last February.
“March is generally considered as a strong sales month. The summer season and pre-Holy Week rush drives customers to the showrooms. Despite this, the market is still more than our expectation, a positive sign of a strong automotive industry,” Gutierrez said in a statement.
“Strong sales of new and improved models, as well as aggressive marketing promotions by various brands” helped expand both the passenger car and commercial vehicle segments that month, Campi said.
Last March, 7,174 passenger cars were sold, up 40 percent year-on-year and 27.7 percent month-on-month.
As for the commercial vehicle segment, sales in March reached 11,999, up 18 percent year-on-year and 7.1 percent month-on-month.
At the end of the first quarter, a total of 51,643 vehicles were sold, 22.9 percent more than the 42,034 units sold in the first three months of last year.
During the three-month period, sales of passenger cars rose 29.9 percent to 18,092 while the volume of commercial vehicles sold increased 19.4 percent to 33,551 units.
“We expect to sustain this stable level as we enter the second quarter,” Gutierrez said.
Among the 17 member-companies of Campi and TMA, Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. sold the most number of vehicles—22,828 units—at end-March.
During the first quarter, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. sold 12,165 vehicles; Ford Motor Company Philippines Inc., 3,692 units; Honda Cars Philippines Inc., 3,318; and Isuzu Philippines Corp., 3,068.
Combined sales of Campi and TMA members comprise about 85 percent of the total number of vehicles being sold in the country, with the balance contributed by car companies belonging to the Association of Vehicle Importers and Distributors Inc. (Avid) as well as a number of luxury vehicle distributors that do not disclose their sales figures.
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