New vehicle sales in Thailand fell by 2.3% to 72,404 units in March, from 74,117 units a year earlier, according to a monthly report from the Federation of Thai Industries.

Consumer spending remained subdued as the country's economy continued to struggle to gain momentum after the 2014 military coup.

Last month's Bangkok International Motor Show failed to lift the market amid a lack of important new model launches. The show's organiser, Grand Prix International, said exhibitors reported just 32,571 orders this year – a drop of 12% compared with last year.

First quarter sales in the country fell by 8.3% to 181,318 units, compared with 197,734 units in the same period a year ago.

Vehicle exports fell by over 14% to 109,334 units in March and by 6.2% to 307,760 in the first quarter – valued at US$4.7bn. Around 70% of exports went to other Asian countries, Oceania and the Middle-East, according to the federation.

Vehicle production rose by 8.2% to 192,811 units in March as automakers pushed for a recovery in the domestic market in the coming months. First quarter output amounted to 506,874 units.

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