Vehicle sales plunge in Feb

More than 13,100 vehicles found buyers last month, plummeting 61% month-on-month, mainly due to the long Tet holiday, according to a new report released by the Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers Association (VAMA).

Of the total, nearly 9,200 passenger cars, 3,800 commercial vehicles and 176 special-use automobiles were sold, a respective fall of 67%, 34% and 47% over January.

The report also showed that automakers delivered nearly 7,700 domestically assembled cars to customers in February, while there were 5,500 imported completely built-up (CBU) vehicles sold, dropping 59% and 63% month-on-month.

According to Toyota Vietnam, it sold 2,300 vehicles last month, excluding Lexus ones, a decline of 20% over the same month last year. As a result, its market share among VAMA members went down by five percentage points.

Similarly, Honda Vietnam reported a 63% plunge in car sales month-on-month, reaching more than 1,600 units. However, the figure surged 224% against the same period in the previous year.

Meanwhile, Truong Hai Auto Corporation, or Thaco, sold nearly 4,300 cars in the month, down 59% versus January and 18% year-on-year.

Mitsubishi Vietnam and Ford Vietnam also faced the same fate, with 420 and 1,600 vehicles sold, plummeting 80% and 53% over the previous month, respectively.

However, the car sales in the first two months of the year increased 21% year-on-year to reach 46,650 units, including nearly 36,600 passenger cars, 9,600 commercial units and 509 specialized cars.

The number of locally-assembled vehicles decreased by 16% year-on-year to 26,500 units, while CBU auto sales grew 179% to reach 20,200 vehicles. Thus, the numbers of the two segments were nearly equal in the two-month period, completely contrary to the situation last year.

Traders of second-hand autos have even found their business stonewalled due to relaxed CBU auto import policies. Further, the prices of new cars seem more competitive as firms have launched promotion programs.

For example, customers buying Nissan cars from March 13 to 31 will be offered cash of VND15 to 30 million, depending on the type of car.

Toyota Vietnam has also announced one-year insurance for customers buying Vios 1.5G CVT, Corolla and Innova cars this month.

Meanwhile, VinFast Trading and Production Company Limited, which has taken over manufacturing facilities of Chevrolet cars in Vietnam, will offer a discount of VND20 million for each Chevrolet Colorado vehicle and VND50 million for each Chevrolet Trailblazer car until the end of this month.

In related news, auto imports surged last month thanks to the removal of stringent auto import regulations stipulated in Government Decree 116. According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, more than 14,100 CBU vehicles valued at over US$300 million were imported, marking an increase of 21.2% in volume versus that of January.

These cars were mainly purchased from Thailand, with 9,400 units and Indonesia, with 3,800 units, making up 93% of the total vehicles shipped to Vietnam.


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