Home Editors' Picks Vehicle sales slip in Sept. 

Vehicle sales slip in Sept. 

CAR AND TRUCK manufacturers reported a 12% year-on-year decline in sales in September. — PHILIPPINE STAR/ MICHAEL VARCAS

VEHICLE SALES dropped 12% year on year in September, although month-on-month sales showed an improvement as lockdown restrictions eased in the Philippine capital, industry data showed.

A joint report from the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) showed 21,493 vehicles were sold in September, 12.4% down from the 24,523 sold in the same month a year ago.

September sales, however, increased by 35.6% from the 15,847 vehicles sold in August, thanks to double-digit sales growth in passenger cars and commercial vehicles.

The government last month eased quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila and shifted to a new alert system with granular lockdowns to allow more sectors of the economy to reopen.

CAMPI President Rommel R. Gutierrez said in a statement the double-digit month-on-month growth will help the industry reach its 20.9% sales growth target this year. The industry is aiming to sell 295,400 units, a fifth higher than the 244,274 units sold in 2020.

For the first nine months, vehicle sales jumped by 29.5% to 191,605 from 148,012 during the same period in 2020, as the government implemented looser quarantine restrictions this year.

“Amidst the challenges, the industry’s optimism still lingers for a better sales performance in the fourth quarter this year. This is driven by the overall improved consumer confidence resulting from a more buoyant economic condition and household spending, according to the recent government data,” Mr. Gutierrez said.

In September, passenger car sales declined by an 23% year on year to 6,580. Year to date, passenger car sales surged by 38.3% to 60,982.

Commercial vehicle sales slipped by 6.6% to 14,913 in September, but its nine-month sales tally rose by 25.7% to 130,623.

Toyota Motors Philippines Corp. remained the sales leader this year with 92,318 vehicles sold in the first nine months of the year, accounting for 48% of the market. 

Mitsubishi Motors Corp. currently has a 14% market share, followed by Ford Motor Co. Phils. Inc. (7.67%), Suzuki Philippines, Inc. (7.54%) and Nissan Philippines, Inc. (6.9%).

Earlier in the year, Mr. Gutierrez estimated that the car industry may see a return to pre-pandemic sales level as late as 2023. — R.M.D.Ochave