KARACHI: Sales of locally assembled automobiles, including jeeps and light commercial vehicles, jumped to 22,654 units in February 2018, up 15% compared with 19,686 units in the same month of previous year, showed the data released by the Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (Pama) on Monday.
Cumulatively, industry sales during the first eight months (July to February) of fiscal year 2017-18 exhibited 23% growth to 170,354 units compared with 138,103 units in the same period of previous year.
These numbers are in line with market estimates given fewer working days in February. The change in import procedure, demand from online ride-hailing services and availability of auto finance at lower rates contributed to strong demand in February 2018, said Topline Securities in a report.
Pak Suzuki Motor Company continues to be the major beneficiary as a majority of used car imports fall under the lower engine capacity segment. Pak Suzuki exhibited a robust growth where sales rocketed 25% year-on-year in February 2018 as attractively priced models Mehran (up 30% year-on-year), WagonR (up 27%) and Cultus (up 23%) all exhibited a strong sales growth.
In the first eight months (July to February), sales were up 30% year-on-year for Pak Suzuki to 96,062 units.
Sales of Honda Atlas Cars came in at 4,501 units, up 20% year-on-year (3% month-on-month) due to strong demand. Sales in the first eight months grew 38% to 33,669 units due to the success of recently revamped Honda City and rebound in sales of BR-V, up 20% month-on-month.
Indus Motor – the makers of Toyota Corolla – lagged behind its peers with a decrease in sales by 8% year-on-year and 5% month-on-month as it continued to face capacity constraints. However, sales in the first eight months edged up 2%.
Tractor sales continued to show an upward trajectory with sales growing 14% year-on-year in February 2018.
Al-Ghazi Tractors outperformed, registering 40% year-on-year growth. In the first eight months of FY18, tractor sales reached 44,627 units.
Truck and bus sales of Pama member companies in February 2018 remained subdued, growing 6% year-on-year. In the first eight months, sales were up 15%.
Motorcycle and three-wheeler sales for February 2018 grew 18% year-on-year due to the rising disposable income of lower middle class.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 13th, 2018.