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KARACHI: Barring bus segment, sales of the entire auto sector -- cars, LCVs, vans and jeeps -- rose by 21 per cent to 258,632 units in 2017-18 compared to 213,632 units in FY17.

The strong performance was due multiple reasons ranging from a supportive macroeconomic environment, cheaper financing, high demand from ride-hailing services, as well as demand generated from election activity, Syed Danial Adil at Topline Securities said.

As per data released by Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (Pama), bus sales plunged to 744 units from 1,130 units in which the market leader Hino bus sales dropped to 334 units from 709.

Truck sales (Hino, Master and Isuzu) swelled to 9,202 in FY18 from 7,499 in FY17. Hino and Isuzu sold 3,874 and 3,878 units versus 3,042 and 2,640 units.

Honda Atlas Cars witnessed the highest growth amongst its peers, clocking in at 31pc year-on-year to a total of 51,494 units due to 302pc increase in BR-Vs sold due to low base of BR-V units in FY17 as sales of the said SUV were initiated in 4QFY17. Disregarding BR-V, the company still posted 16pc growth originating from City and Civic models.

Pak Suzuki Motor Company Ltd (PSMCL) posted strong growth of 26pc, selling 144,070 units cumulatively owing to 65pc rise in Wagon-R sales followed by 20pc sales rise in Cultus and 22pc jump in Mehran sales.

Indus Motors Company (IMC) sold a total of 63,068 units in FY18 up by a modest 5pc year-on-year. Focus on high margin segment has borne fruit as sales of Fortuner and Hilux have gone up a staggering 204pc and 27pc respectively. However, sales of Toyota Corolla remained dull (down 2pc) as the company continued to be plagued by capacity constraints.

In June, auto sales were up 20pc year-on-year whereas it was down 15pc month-over-month due to Eid holidays.

Millat Tractors Ltd and Al Ghazi Tractors sales rose to 42,707 and 27,839 units in FY18 from 34,506 and 19,833 units the previous year.

Atlas Honda Ltd (AHL) sold 1.150 million bikes as compared to 960,105 units in FY17 while sales of United Auto Motorcycle reached 405,982 units from 326,298 units in FY17.

Suzuki and Yamaha two-wheeler sales in FY18 stood at 21,724 and 21,810 units as compared to 18,478 and 13,282 units in FY17.

Published in Dawn, July 12th, 2018