KARACHI: Auto sector, barring the bus segment, recorded a steep decline in sales ranging from 28.4-56.5 per cent during the first half of 2022-23.

With a 40pc drop, total car sales stood at 68,900 units in July-December compared to 114,774 units in the same period last year.

Buyers’ reluctance stemmed from rising prices coupled with high-interest rates making leasing more expensive, curbs on auto financing and non-opening of letters of credit resulting in parts shortage that led to production halts by various assemblers and late delivery in Japanese models, etc also depressed the demand for automobiles.

Due to the change of model year, buyers also slowed down purchasing of vehicles which plunged car sales in December 2022 to 13,768 from 15,432 units in November.

According to the data of Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers (PAMA), a huge fall of 59pc was recorded in Toyota Corolla and Yaris sales to 12,065 units from 29,126 in 6MFY22. However, the month-on-month sales slightly fell to 1,879 from 1,933 in November.

Honda Civic/City sales slowed down by 49pc to 8,906 units from 17,620 amid a whooping drop in December sales to 981 from 1,509 units in November.

However, the new model of Suzuki Swift posted robust sales of 7,136 units from 497 units in 1HFY22 despite a decline in December sales to 1,428 from 2,242 units in November.

Hyundai Elantra sales came down by 15pc to 1,297 in the last six months from 1,508 units while its December sales soared to 142 from 101 units in November. Hyundai Sonata sales stood at 551 units showing a drop of 56pc from 1,240 in July-Dec FY22.

In 1,000cc segment, the first six months of FY23 proved disappointing for Pak Suzuki due to 65pc and 68pc sales drop in Suzuki Cultus and WagonR to 5,143 and 3,769 units in 6MFY23 from 14,516 and 11,629 units in the same period last year. In contrast, sales of Cultus in December fell to 1,057 units from 1,134 units while WagonR sales rose to 872 from 716 units in the above period.

In less than 1,000cc, Suzuki Alto660cc sales remained slow by 15pc to 27,614 units in 6MFY23 from 32,388 while Bolan sales registered a 61pc fall to 2,436 units from 6,241 units in 6MFY22. Alto and Bolan sales in December 2022 were 6,898 and 464 as compared to 7,252 and 503 units in November.

Total Jeeps and Pickups sales remained 28.4pc lower than 15,188 in 6MFY23 as compared to 21,202 units in the same period of last fiscal year, while December 2022 sales increased to 3,216 units from 3,099 units in November.

In the current crisis in the auto sector, Hyundai Tucson depicted a 69pc jump in sales to 2,230 in 6MFY23 versus 1,321 units in the same period last fiscal year due to discounts on registration and immediate delivery options.

The sales of the newly launched HR-V combined with the Honda BR-V were up by 14pc to 2,197 from 1,928 units.

Toyota Fortuner and Revo sales fell by 30pc to 6,242 units in 1HFY23 from 8,946 in the same period last year followed by 69pc thin sales of Suzuki Ravi to 2,273 units from 7,432 units.

The sales of Sazgar Haval and Cherry Tigo, new players, stood at 442 and 706 units in 1HFY23.

JAC X-200, Isuzu D-Max and Hyundai Porter sold 345, 132 and 567 units as compared to 479, 253 and 808 units, down by 28pc, 48pc and 30pc compared to 6MFY22.

Total bus sales of PAMA members grew by 23pc to 320 units from 260 units in July-Dec FY22 while truck sales, a barometer of the country’s import/export, decreased by 42pc to 1,627 units from 2,802 units in 6MFY22.

Tractor demand dips

The country’s agriculture indicator remained subdued due to a 44pc and 63pc fall in Fiat and Massey Ferguson sales to 5,212 and 6,301 units as compared to 9,225 and 17,254 units in 1HFY22. Assemblers continued to observe non-production days due to parts shortage and falling sales trends while floods in August 2022 also affected sales.

Sales of two- and three-wheelers dipped 33pc to 627,835 units in 6MFY23 as compared to 938,355 units, Honda bike sales came down by 23pc to 522,770 units as compared to 678,655 units in 6MFY22.

Sales of costly Suzuki bikes surged to 20,762 units from 18,023 units in the last six months of FY22 while Yamaha sales showed 44pc fall to 6,823 units from 12,193 units.

Published in Dawn, January 12th, 2023

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