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Car sales fall further in August

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DOMESTIC sales of automobiles picked up in August from the previous month, but declined 14.1% when compared to the same month a year ago.

The Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association on Wednesday reported their member companies sold 30,313 vehicles in August, against sales of 35,309 units in the same month last year.

The groups marked the seventh month of decreased sales when measured against the comparable period last year. Sales this year were positive year-on-year only in January, which saw a 4% growth.

Total sales dropped 14.3% to 229,941 vehicles year-to-date versus the 268,424 units in last year’s comparative eight months.

Sales in August were 8.1% more than the 28,038 units sold in July.

In a press statement that accompanied the vehicle groups’ report that focused on the month-on-month increase, CAMPI President Rommel R. Gutierrez attributed the improvement to “intensified promotional campaigns and new model launches.”

“Coming from a double-digit decline in July, our August sales performance is an indication of improving consumer confidence,” Mr. Gutierrez said.

Sales of commercial vehicles in August dropped 10% from a year ago, or 21,635 units this year versus 24,051 units last year.

The passenger car segment slumped 22.9% in August with 8,678 units sold versus last year’s 11,258 units.

Toyota Motor Philippines accounted for 42.06% of CAMPI sales during the first eight months of the year, with 96,716 units, an 18.3% decline from the same period last year. Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. followed with a 19.26% share, or 44,283 units sold, a 6.7% decrease. Nissan Philippines, Inc. secured an 8.95% share with 20,952 vehicles sold, a 36.7% rise from last year. — J. C. Lim