JOHANNESBURG – New-vehicle sales crashed 13.4 percent in April from a year earlier‚ fulfilling forecasts that economic uncertainty caused by SA’s credit downgrading to junk status would have an immediate effect on consumer and corporate confidence.
Sales last month totalled 34‚956‚ compared to 40‚348 in April 2016.
All sectors suffered: car sales tumbled 13.7 percent from 26‚012 to 22‚452; light commercial vehicles 13.3 percent from 12‚217 to 10‚592; and all truck categories‚ by between 3.4 percent and 15.5 percent.
As a result‚ total new-vehicle sales for the first four months of 2017 were down 1.4 percent from a year earlier‚ from 184‚520 to 181‚899. Car sales fell 2.2 percent from 124‚389 to 121‚676.
There was also bad news on the export front‚ with April shipments of South African-built vehicles down 25.5 percent from a year earlier‚ from 32‚832 to 24‚449.