KARACHI: The first month FY21 started on a mixed note for auto sector with the car segment continuing to struggle with low sales while two/three-wheelers and farm tractors witnessed recovery.

After suffering over 53.5 per cent sales dip in FY20, buyers appeared to have returned to the markets due to low interest rates, as evident from a minor volume drop of 7.7pc to 10,123 units in July despite frequent price increases by the assemblers.

Sales in July posted much better performance than 7,352 units in June and 3,800 in May, while the industry braved “nil” production and volume in April when lockdown was enforced all over the country.

The biggest gainer in July was Suzuki Bolan with 56pc growth to 519 units while Suzuki Alto660cc registered 53pc sales decline to 2,158.

Honda Civic and City marked 52pc jump in sales to 2,210 units while Toyota Corolla in contrast sold 23pc less at 1,528 units.

Meanwhile, Swift sales recovered by 5pc to 182 units in July as against the decrease recorded in sales of Cultus and WagonR by 11pc and 33pc to 1,077 and 566 units, respectively. Newcomer Toyota Yaris posted volume at 1,893 units.

Truck sales, considered as a barometer of local and foreign trade, came down by 46.4pc to 218 units in which Hino’s plummeted by 71pc to 29 units in July.

Volume of bus category in July ended with 68.6pc plunge to 37 units in which Hino remained the worst performer posting 59pc drop to 16 units.

Toyota Fortuner and Honda BR-V sales showed improvement of 97pc and 6pc to 146 and 257 units in July while those of Suzuki Ravi stood down by 42pc at 489 units.

Toyota Hilux and JAC sales rose by 36pc and 2pc to 486 and 52 units, respectively while D-MAX volumes fell by 34pc to 40 units in July. New entrant Hyundai Porter sold 66 units.

Sales of Fiat and Massey Ferguson tractors jumped by 25pc and 14pc to 1,401 and 2,205 units, respectively, signalling an uptick in agricultural activity.

In two/three wheelers, the market leader Honda bikes posted a rise of 17pc to 94,003 units last month while Suzuki and Yamaha ended with 1,282 and 1,311 units, down by 21pc and 28pc compared to July 2019.

Road Prince and United Auto Motorcycle sales had swelled by 131pc and 62pc to 11,154 and 30,050 units.

Qingqi, Sazgar, Road Prince and United Auto three-wheelers sales stood at 1,637, 1,115, 1,369 and 603 units as compared to 157, 585, 43 and 815 units, respectively.

Hammad Akram at Topline Securities said KIA Lucky Motors sold 1,500 cars in July.

Published in Dawn, August 12th, 2020

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