South African vehicle sales strong in 2011


    11 January 2012

    South African new vehicle sales remained strong in 2011, with figures released by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of SA (Naamsa) on Tuesday showing a 15.6 percent increase in total industry vehicles sales, to 570 012 units for the year.

    2011 proven to be a very successful year for the country’s vehicle industry due to high demand as a result of low interest rates, increased corporate activity and a number of new entry-level models entering the market.

    For the month of December 2011, Naamsa data also shows an 11 percent year-on-year increase in total industry vehicle sales, to 43 790 units.

    Chris De Kock, executive head of sales and marketing at WesBank, notes, however, that these figures exclude sales figures from one vehicle manufacturer. “If we assume that this manufacturer sold a similar number of vehicles in December 2011 as were sold in the previous month, we would actually be looking at year-on-year growth in December 2011 of around 16 percent.”

    WesBank book data also recorded an increase in credit applications in December 2011 to 91 091, compared with 88 429 recorded in the same period a year earlier.

    “This positive consumer trend was also reflected across other book data, with a further reduction in the replacement cycle and an increase in the new versus used car purchase ratio,” De Kock said.

    “Looking forward, we expect moderate growth on these figures in 2012 as a result of price increases feeding through and the likelihood of a rise in interest rates.

    “However, if market sales in 2012 match those seen last year, the industry should be reasonably happy.