View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. News
April 4, 2017

South Korean domestic sales fall 2% in March

Domestic sales among South Korea’s five main automakers fell by 2% to 145,903 units in March 2017, from 148,848 units in the same month of last year, according to preliminary data released individually by the country’s vehicle manufacturers.

Domestic sales among South Korea’s five main automakers fell by 2% to 145,903 units in March 2017, from 148,848 units in the same month of last year, according to preliminary data released individually by the country’s vehicle manufacturers.

The data did not include sales by South Korea’s low-volume commercial vehicle manufacturers, including Tata-Daewoo and Daewoo Bus Corporation, which typically account for up to 2% of the domestic market.

Also not included in the data are sales of imported vehicles which exceeded 12% of the total vehicle market last year. These are covered in a separate report after the data is released later in the month.

The moderate decline in domestic sales in March reflects more than anything strong year earlier sales after the government extended the sales tax discount until the end of June last year. First quarter sales were 1.6% higher at 371,725 units, from 365,772 units a year earlier.

The performances of the individual vehicle manufacturers in their home market was mixed last month, with Hyundai , Renault-Samsung and Ssangyong reporting growth while Kia Motors and GM Korea posted sharp declines.

Global sales among the country’s ‘big five’ automakers, including vehicles produced overseas by HyundaiKia , declined sharply in March, by 7.7% to 733,274 units from 794,868 units a year earlier, reflecting both weaker domestic and overseas sales.

First quarter global sales were 2.6% lower at 1,998,138 units compared with 2,051,087 units in the same period a year earlier.

Overseas sales, including vehicles produced overseas by HyundaiKia , fell by 9.1% to 587,371 units last month from 646,020 units a year earlier, reflecting lower deliveries in key markets such as the US, China and Russia. First-quarter overseas sales fell by 3.5% to 1,626,411 units, from 1,685,315 units in the same period of last year.

Hyundai Motor’s global sales fell by 6.3% to 405,929 units in March, from 433,171 units a year earlier, on sharply lower overseas sales. First quarter global sales fell by 1.6% to 1,089,922 units, from 1,107,406 units a year earlier, with local analysts pointing to a weak SUV line-up and political tensions between South Korea and China as key factors for this recent weakness.

Domestic sales continued to expand in March, albeit by just 2.3% to 63,675 units from 62,166 units a year earlier, helped by the recent launch of the Grandeur and Sonata passenger cars. Cumulative three-month sales were slightly higher at 161,978 units, compared with 160,862 units a year earlier.

Overseas sales fell sharply last month, by 7.7% to 342,164 units from 370,712 units a year earlier, reflecting weak sales in key markets such as the US, China and Russia. First-quarter overseas sales were 2% lower at 927,944 units, from 946,251 units a year earlier.

Kia Motors‘ global sales fell by over 11% to 238,222 units in March, from 268,306 units a year earlier, reflecting both weak domestic and overseas sales. First-quarter sales were 5.9% lower at 664,864 units compared with 706,446 units in the same period of last year.

Domestic sales fell by 5.7% to 47,621 units last month from 50,510 units a year earlier, resulting in a 4.9% fall in year-to-date sales to 121,791 units, from 128,125 units a year earlier. The company hopes that new model launches in the coming months, including the new Stinger sports car in May, the new Kona SUV in June and the G70 luxury saloon in July will help reverse the first-quarter decline.

Overseas sales fell by 12.5% to 190,601 units in March, from 217,796 units a year earlier, reflecting weak demand in China and the USA. First-quarter overseas sales declined by 6.7% to 537,545 units from 577,034 units in the same period of last year.

GM Korea’s global sales fell by 9.4% to 50,850 units in March, from 56,144 units a year earlier, reflecting both weaker domestic sales and exports. In the first three months of the year sales were 4.6% lower at 143,058 units compared with 149,948 units a year earlier.

The data does not include exports of CKD kits for assembly overseas, which are substantial.

Domestic sales fell by 12.4% to 14,778 units last month, from 16,868 a year earlier. This resulted in a 0.2% drop in first quarter sales to 37,648 units, with weak demand for the Impala sedan and delays in the roll out of the Cruze offsetting growth elsewhere.

CBU exports fell by 8.2% to 36,072 units in March from 39,276 units a year earlier, and by 6.2% to 105,410 in the first quarter of the year.

Renault-Samsung’s global sales rose by 4.3% to 25,281 units last month, compared with 24,237 units a year earlier, reflecting mainly a strong rise in export sales. First-quarter global sales, excluding CKD exports, rose by over 21% to 66,119 units compared with 54,583 units a year earlier.

Domestic sales were just slightly higher at 10,510 units last month, from 10,235 a year earlier, helped by the recent roll-out of the new SM6 mid-size sedan and the QM6 crossover vehicle. First-quarter domestic sales were up by over 56% at 25,958 units compared with 16,599 units in the same period of last year.

CBU exports continued to grow in March, by 5.5% to 14,771 units from 14,002 units a year earlier, resulting in a 5.7% rise in outbound shipments to 40,161 units in the first quarter of the year.

Ssangyong Motor, owned by India’s Mahindra & Mahindra, reported 12,992 sales of built-up vehicles in March – little changed from the 13,010 units sold a year earlier, with positive domestic sales offsetting a moderate decline in exports.

First-quarter sales were 1.7% higher at 34,228 units, compared with 33,667 units a year earlier.

Domestic sales rose by 1.8% to 9,229 units in March and by 7.6% to 24,350 units in the first quarter. CBU exports fell by 4.5% to 3,763 units last month and also by 10.6% to 9,878 units in the first three months of the year.

NEWSLETTER Sign up Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. The top stories of the day delivered to you every weekday. A weekly roundup of the latest news and analysis, sent every Monday. The industry's most comprehensive news and information delivered every quarter.
I consent to GlobalData UK Limited collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy
SUBSCRIBED

THANK YOU

Thank you for subscribing to Just Auto