Toyota still top car seller in SA

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Cape Town - Toyota is still the top car seller in South Africa, official statistics released by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers (Naamsa) released on Wednesday show.

In April Toyota sold 8 213 vehicles in SA, followed by Volkswagen Group at 6 261, FMC at 3 570, Nissan at 3 403 and Hyundai at 2 633.

As for passenger vehicles sold in SA in April, Volkswagen sold 5 819, followed by Toyota (4 101), Hyundai (2 390) and Renault (1 610).

With 8 063 vehicles exported from South Africa, FMC came out tops in this category for April,  followed by Volkswagen Group and Toyota with 6 659 and 3 376 vehicles exported respectively.

Volkswagen with 6 659 was the lead exporter of passenger vehicles from SA in April.

Naamsa pointed out that, for the time being Mercedes-Benz SA will only report aggregated sales data. For April 2018, the manufacturer reported a total of 1 058 passenger vehicles sold in SA, 327 commercial vehicles sold in SA and 5 251 vehicles exported.

Naamsa also pointed out that, due to the merger of Chrysler and Fiat Group with effect from May 1 2018, trade figures for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles SA will only be available by about the middle of May 2018.

Total domestic new vehicle sales in SA in April were 36 346 units - an improvement of 1 260 vehicles (3.6%) compared to April last year, according to Naamsa.

It said the configuration of public holidays at the end of April 2018, preceded by national industrial strike action, will have impacted domestic sales.

Naamsa expects new vehicle sales to show a steady improvement over the medium term, due to further recovery in domestic demand supported by continued moderation in new vehicle price inflation.

Other factors are rising real disposable consumer income; recent improvement in the country’s political and policy environment; lower interest rates; and the maintenance of an investment grade rating with a stable outlook by a major credit ratings agency.

VAT impact

Fin24 reported early in April that the impact of public holidays on domestic new vehicle sales in March - including the Easter weekend - had been partially offset by pre-emptive buying by consumers during the month to avoid tax increases, Naamsa said at the time.

These tax increases include value added tax (VAT) which increased from 14% to 15% on April 1, new vehicle emissions taxes and ad valorem duty changes announced in Budget 2018.

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