The Philippine new vehicle market was up slightly in May 2019, by 1.2% at 30,998 units from 30,620 units in the same month of last year, according to member wholesale data released jointly by the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines Inc (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA).

Sales of commercial vehicles rose by 3.4% to 21,945 units last month from 21,219 units a year earlier, while passenger car sales declined by 3.7% to 9,053 units from 9,401 units.

The data did not include non-affiliated brands such as Hyundai, Chevrolet and Subaru, which together accounted for around 12% of the total market last year.

Overall sales in the first five months of the year were still slightly lower at 142,185 units compared with 142,240 units a year earlier, with passenger car sales down by over 11% at 42,886 units while commercial vehicles sales rose by 5.6% to 99,299 units, helped by strong demand for pickup trucks and newly-launched passenger utility vehicles (PUVs).

Toyota claimed a 41.4% market share in the five-month period with some 58,886 vehicle sales, followed by Mitsubishi Motors with 18.2% (25,895 units); and Nissan 12.1% (17,188 units).

While the overall market is still struggling to recover from last year's excise tax increase, CAMPI president Rommel Gutierrez remained optimistic that full-year sales in 2019 would be higher than in the previous year.

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