Vehicle sales down in August

By Louella D. Desiderio, The Philippine Star

Posted at Sep 12 2012 10:24 AM | Updated as of Sep 12 2012 08:57 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Vehicle sales of local car assemblers went down slightly in August from a year ago with monsoons and heavy floods last month leading to fewer working days.

In a statement yesterday, the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) said total industry sales reached 11,351 units in August, lower than the 11,511 units sold in the same month last year.

“A slight decline compared to the previous month’s performance was due to the strong monsoon rains that had caused severe flooding throughout Metro Manila,” the CAMPI said.

“This has likewise resulted to fewer working days on top of the national holidays declared during the month,” it said further.

But while sales were down in August compared to a year ago, the CAMPI saw sales in the January to August period rise six percent to 98,725 units this year from the 93,108 units sold in the comparable period last year.

It attributed the strong growth to the influx of new vehicle models introduced this year as well as the positive economic outlook with Filipinos having greater purchasing power.

Data showed that on a year-to-date basis, Toyota Motor Philippines Corp. maintained its lead in the industry with a 40.9 percent share of the market having sold 40,383 units.

Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. came in second accounting for 23.1 percent of the market with vehicle sales of 22,761 units, while Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. took the third spot with 8.3 percent market share or vehicle sales of 8,193 units.

CAMPI president Roque Rommel Gutierrez said despite the dip in car sales in August, the group is upbeat that it wouldbe able to achieve its target for the year.

“The recent calamity brought about by continuous monsoon rains during the first week of last month have obviously taken away sales opportunities due to several customers deferring their purchases. Nevertheless, we are still optimistic that we will be able to reach our market forecast of (185,000) unit sales by end of the year,” he said.

He said the strong demand for the month is a testament to the industry’s bullish performance and positive outlook for the remainder of the year.