South Africa’s year-on-year motor trade sales have increased by 7, 4% in February 2013. These figures, revealed by Stats SA this week, showed that the highest annual growth rates were recorded for new vehicle sales (10, 7%), fuel sales (9, 6%) and workshop income (6, 4%).
Dr Norman Lamprecht, executive manager at the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa), predicted even more growth in the motor trade industry based on excellent sales records shown since 2010. The industry was at its peak in 2010 with a 25% surge in sales.
Motor trade sales increased by 9,3% in the three months ended February 2013 compared with the three months ended February 2012. Stats SA reports that the major contributors to this increase were the new vehicle sales (12, 2%); fuel sales (10, 9%); and used vehicle sales (9%).
“Low interest rates and special packages in the new car sales industry have contributed to this growth. Also between 2006 and 2007 sales were at their peak with 1, 4 million cars sold in this period. Those cars are now being replaced and that could be why there is a bigger growth in sales since last year,” said Lamprecht.
As there is aggressive competition between dealerships selling new cars it means that there’s little difference in price between new and used vehicles. Obtaining credit for buying a car has become cheaper too so consumers are finding it more attractive to buy a new car than to buy one that is used.A new car’s service plan and warranty makes it a more financially appealing choice for consumers.
Month-to-month sales drop
It has not been a smooth ride for sales on a month-to-month basis. Statistics showed that seasonally adjusted motor trade sales decreased by 3, 4% in February 2013 compared with January 2013 where sales were what%.
This followed month-on-month changes of 11, 1% in January 2013 and -6, 8% in December 2012. Seasonally adjusted motor trade sales decreased by 0, 5% in the three months ended February 2013 compared with the previous three months.
Lamprecht attributed this decline to the Easter holidays that fell in March this year which resulted in fewer working days during this month. Because April will have fewer holidays than last year, he predicts more growth in sales for this month.