The Philippine automotive industry opened the year with a 19.3-percent sales growth in January, exceeding the full-year expansion target of 15 percent, two industry groups said Wednesday.
The Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc. and Truck Manufacturers Association said in a joint report combined sales by members reached 18,662 units in January, up from 15,647 vehicles sold in the same month in 2014.
The figure, however, dropped 12.5 percent from 21,320 vehicles sold in December 2014.
“We have projected a 15-percent growth for the entire year. The January sales performance is an early sign that our targets are achievable, with more new product launches and promotion packages to come throughout the year,” said Campi president Rommel Gutierrez.
The January 2015 sales were the highest for the month of January, the two groups said.
“January has been traditionally a slow month, following a hectic selling period in December but this year’s January sales results is yet another milestone achieved by the automotive industry,” Gutierrez said.
The passenger car segment led the industry with a year-on-year growth of 35.8 percent, or from 5,301 units to 7,200 units in January.
The commercial vehicle sector also saw sales rise 10.8 percent from 10,346 units to 11,462 units. Except for a 4.8-percent decline in light trucks sale, other sub-segments within the commercial vehicle category also increased.
The Asian utility vehicle sub-segment increased 5.6 percent to 3,543 units in January 2015 from 3,355 units in January 2014 while light commercial vehicles increased 14.1 percent to 7,483 units from 6,561 units.
Heavy duty trucks and buses also showed improvement with combined growth of 14.2 percent from 141 units in January 2014 to 161 units last month.
January sales in all segments declined compared to December, except for the AUV and trucks and buses category.
Toyota Motor Philippines accounted for 46.7 percent of total sales in January. It was followed by Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp., with 17.4-percent share; Ford Philippines with 8.8 percent; Isuzu Philippines with 6.6 percent; and Honda Cars Philippines with 6.1 percent.