North America a solitary bright spot for light vehicle sales as Asia continues to weigh heavily on the market, says GlobalData

Latest global light vehicle sales data for the months of July and August collected by GlobalData shows that the slowdown in light vehicle sales shows no signs of letting up. For the year to date, worldwide sales are down 4.9% to 52.3 million for the eight months. A sales rebound in the US for July and August held the worldwide decline in the two months to 4.6%;

Calum MacRae, Director of Automotive Product Development at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, commented:

“The weakness in the Chinese market continues to weigh heavily on the global picture. July and August sales in the country closed 9.5% down on last year at just over 3.6 million, continuing the pattern that’s been observed throughout the year with sales declining 9.4% year-to-date.

“Macroeconomic stimuli that Beijing has introduced will take their time to increase dealer footfall. It’s the same with efforts by cities to loosen registration restrictions and incentives they are reportedly offering for New Energy Vehicles registered in certain cities.

“The picture is gloomier in India. Sales in in the two months fell 28.8% year-on-year taking the market down over 12% year-to-date at 2.33 million. Currently, the market is dwarfed by that of China and not as strategically important for the world’s automakers.

“The standout bright spot is the US market, which has confounded all expectations earlier in the year. Sales in North America as a whole increased by 4.7% in the two months, narrowing the year-to-date slide in sales to just 0.5%.

“All in all it’s shaping up to be a disappointing year for the global market and our Seasonally Adjusted Annualised Rate (SAAR) model is pointing to sales of just over 91 million in the year, which will be the lowest total since 2016 and a shock to an industry that has become adjusted to linear growth in the years after the financial crisis.”

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