August sales: some highs and lows

August sales: some highs and lows

It would seem that August was a rollercoaster ride for vehicle sales in South Africa as trade increased in some segments, while dwindling in others …

Says Rory Schulz, acting managing director of UD Trucks Southern Africa: “The year-to-date decline of medium and heavy commercial vehicles, which mainly consists of units transporting freight and fast moving consumer goods, is indicative of the challenging economic conditions faced by consumers.”

He continues: “As a result of South Africa’s current economic status, we are also expecting above-inflation vehicle price increases which further dampen the momentum of truck sales.” Extra-heavy commercial vehicles (EHCVs) and bus sales are, however, continuing to boost the local truck industry’s performance. During August, a total of 2 805 trucks were sold – which is 8,43 percent up on July’s results.

When compared to August 2013, the medium commercial vehicle (MCV) segment declined by 5,57 percent to 984 units. Heavy commercial vehicles gained some ground with a 13,39 percent increase in sales to 508 units, while EHCVs were down year-on-year by 3,21 percent to 1 205 units. Bus sales were also down last month by 8,47 percent to 108 units.

Schulz adds: “There has been only a marginal increase in sales of 14 units so far this year, with the total market now standing at 20 528 units. We don’t expect it to grow much more, with challenging economic conditions expected to remain.”

At Hino SA, however, August brought good news … the company’s sales reached a new record high when 411 trucks were sold. Adding in the sale of 44 Toyota Dyna medium trucks, the Hino SA total was 455 – the highest figure since October 2008, when the combined Hino/Dyna figure was 492 units.

Even though the MCV division declined in overall year-on-year sales, this segment delivered Hino’s highest volume during August – 280 to be exact (236 Hino 300-Series and 44 Toyota Dyna vehicles). This performance took Hino SA’s share of this segment to 27,8 percent.

Hino SA also sold 128 of its 500-Series heavy trucks and 47 of the 700-Series extra-heavy models in August, which were the highest volumes since March 2013. The company adds that last year was the best ever for the brand in South Africa with 3 461 units sold. The plan for 2014 is to exceed this record.

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