Vietnam's new vehicle market continued to rebound strongly in January, with sales jumping by 24% to 31,789 units from weak year-earlier sales of 25,601 units, according to member data released by the Vietnam Automotive Manufacturers Association (VAMA).
Economic growth accelerated to 7.3% in the fourth quarter of last year from a revised 6.8% in the third quarter, driven by strong service and manufacturing sector growth and inward investment. This rounded off a strong year for the economy, with full-year GDP growth estimated at 7.1% – up from 6.8% in 2017.
Passenger vehicle sales jumped by close to 43% to 26,286 units in January from 18,433 units a year earlier, while commercial vehicle sales continued to struggle – with volumes declining by over 23% to 5,503 units from 7,168 units.
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 an 8.8% drop in group sales to 10,282 units last month. Mazda sales were up by a little over 2% at 5,153 units, while Kia sales rose by just 1.3% to 3,463 units.
Toyota remained the leading vehicle brand in the country in January, with sales rebounding strongly from weak year-earlier volumes – by over 48% to 7,599 units, while Honda's sales jumped by 148% to 4,348 units. Ford's also posted a sharp sales rebound last month, of 39% 3,401 units, while GM's sales plunged to 290 units from 1.138 units a year earlier.