Vehicle sales follow downturn in South African economy

Cape Town- South Africa (PANA) -- New vehicles sales in South Africa dropped significantly in March compared to the same month last year.
According to figures released Wednesday by the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers, the biggest loser was the passenger car market, where sales dropped by 20 percent.
The decrease is being attributed to higher costs of vehicle financing and higher interest rates.
The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers said 27,214 units were sold this March, compared to 34,000 in March last year.
Of these, 17,556 were passenger vehicles, 8,396 light commercials, 548 medium commercials and 717 heavy commercials.
"Market conditions over the December/January period were distorted by anomalies in reporting that were perhaps a little more exaggerated than in past years but the market has settled down into a more regular pattern over the first quarter," said Johan van Zyl, Chief Operating Officer for Toyota South Africa.

03 april 2002 18:59:00

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