New vehicle sales in Vietnam continued to rebound in October, by over 39% to 28,041 units from weak year earlier sales of 20,156 units, according to member data released by the Vietnam Automotive Manufacturers Association (VAMA). 

Economic growth has been strong this year with third quarter GDP growth estimated at 6.9% – just slightly down on the 7.1% growth reported in the first half of the year.

But the vehicle market has struggled with regulatory changes introduced at the beginning of the year that have held back imports in particular, although the situation seems to have improved significantly in the last few months.

Overall vehicle sales in the first 10 months of the year were up by 4.6% at 214,466 units compared with 204,994 units in the same period of last year.  Passenger vehicle sales jumped by over 79% to 21,004 units last month and were up by 22% at 147,422 units year to date.

Commercial vehicle sales continued to struggle, however, with volumes declining by close to 17% to 7,037 units in October and by over 20% to 67,044 units YTD.

Truong Hai (Thaco) group, the local assembler and distributor of brands such as Kia, Mazda, Peugeot and Hyundai and a significant player in the commercial vehicle segment, reported a 7.5% year on year rise in group sales to 79,320 units in the first 10 months of the year. 

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Mazda sales alone were up by 26% at 26,165 units while Kia sales rose by over 27% to 23,310 units.

Toyota remained the leading vehicle brand in the country over the 10 month period, albeit with sales rising by just 2.5% to 49,434 units, while Honda's sales were up by over 95% at 21,054 units. Ford's sales plunged by over 27% to 17,210 units and GM's were 8.6% higher at 9,642 units.