KARACHI: Pakistan’s locally manufactured car sales have gone up by 15.5 per cent in July 2018 (first month of the current fiscal year) with the sale of 18,875 units compared to 16,337 units sold in the same period last year.
However, the total vehicle’s sales including LCVs, Vans, and Jeep (including cars) were up by 9 per cent in July to 21,344 units compared to 19,577 units in the same period last year.
“The government’s condition, imposed by the previous government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), to sell vehicles to the filer only, hurt the vehicle’s manufacturers in the month of July as the budget 2018-19 would be implemented from July 1 2018,” an analyst of a brokerage house said.
The strong performance was due to a multitude of reasons ranging from supportive macroeconomic environment, cheaper financing, demand from ride-hailing services, as well as demand generated from election activity,’ said an analyst at Topline Securities.
This slowdown in car sales was due to higher car prices as all companies raised car prices 3 to 4 times during the last fiscal year and continuous Pak-rupee depreciation against the dollar, he added.
The major reason of low car sales is the restriction imposed by the government on non-filers for booking and registration of new cars, and resumption of import of used and new cars through personal transfer or baggage scheme.
Honda — HCAR remained at the higher side and its sales stood at 4,609 units in the month of July 2018, which is up 22 per cent compared to 3,820 units sold in July 2017. However, its BR-V (jeep) went down to 372 units sold in July 2018 compared to 691 units sold in the same period last year.
Pak Suzuki Motor Company (PSMC) sales have gone down by 12 per cent to 9,700 units in the month of July compared to 8,642 units sold in the same period last year. The sales of Suzuki WagonR and Mehran have gone up to 2,772 units and 3,437 units in July 2018 respectively compared to 1,936 units and 2,863 units sold in the same period last year. However, the sales of Cultus and Swift have declined during the period.
The PSMC has issued a notification to shut down the plant of Mehran VX (Without Air-conditioner) from November 2018, which may affect its total sale in the current fiscal year.
Indus Motors (INDU) sold 4,566 units in July 2018 up by a modest 17.8 per cent. Focus on high margin segment has borne fruit as sales of Fortuner have gone down to 220 units compared to 270 units sold in July 2017. However, the company sold 682 units of Toyota Hilux in July 2018 compared to 473 units sold in July 2017.
All the major automakers like Indus Motors Company, Pak Suzuki and Honda Atlas had announced price hikes for their models during the last fiscal year.