Passenger car sales fell in November compared to October due to lower sales at AvtoVAZ

Passenger car sales fell in November compared to October due to lower sales at AvtoVAZ

Sales of passenger cars fell in November compared to October due to lower sales at AvtoVAZ. However, in December, demand is expected to be a record for the year: last week, sales have almost reached the level of summer peaks. Although there is no talk of New Year sales, Chinese automakers are maintaining discount programs, and buyers expect prices to rise starting in the new year. For now, dealers say, traffic to showrooms is slowed by snowfall.

The passenger car market in November was 2.5% lower than in October, amounting to 108.4 thousand units, according to a message from the Ministry of Industry and Trade with reference to PPK (a joint venture of Electronic Passport and Autostat). This is the first month-on-month decline since May of this year. The main month-on-month decline was shown by the largest market player AvtoVAZ, reporting sales of almost 36.1 thousand cars in November. The concern attributed this to the increase in the Central Bank rate.

Sales of the largest Chinese players Chery and Haval increased in monthly terms, follows from Autostat data. They differ slightly from the information from the Ministry of Industry and Trade due to the different segmentation of light commercial vehicles (LCVs), as well as from the statistics of AvtoVAZ, which uses data from dealers and takes into account LCVs. Automotive analyst Vladimir Bespalov notes that month-on-month sales volatility for individual brands may be due to delivery delays or corporate orders that have not yet been reflected. However, he notes, usually demand in the budget segment is more sensitive to purchasing and lending conditions.

Dealers have not noticed a slowdown in demand. It did not decrease for new cars in November, says Ilya Petrov, director of retail sales at Avilon. “In the first days of December, traffic in our car dealerships decreased slightly, due to heavy snowfall over the weekend,” he adds, noting that from the middle of the month we can expect an increase in demand due to the expectation of rising prices in the future (for other consequences of snowfall, see below). page 1). Traditionally, automakers update price tags from January 1st. Evgeniy Zhitnukhin, head of the dealership department of the Fresh automotive marketplace, also speaks about the surge in interest and purchasing power, despite the general market trends. If we compare the first weekend of last month and this month, traffic increased by 7%, he notes.

According to Autostat, sales over the past week (November 27 – December 3) are almost at the level of the August record – about 28 thousand cars, which is 13% higher than the previous week.

In addition to the expectation of rising prices, buyers’ interest is attracted by “various supports, promotions and offers provided both by the brands themselves and by the dealer, traditional for the end of the calendar year,” says Ilya Petrov. “For many Chinese brands, discounts for trade-in and credit, as well as direct support for specific models, are still relevant,” he explains.

Traditionally, the market is busier in December, despite the fact that there are few discount pre-New Year programs now, says Evgeny Zhitnukhin. “Many Russians still consider this period to change their car. Perhaps this is due to New Year’s bonuses, thirteenth salaries, or they have not yet had time to rebuild after old trends, when dealers emptied warehouses and could reduce the price by almost half. This is not entirely groundless, because a number of brands actually offer favorable conditions,” he adds.

As follows from a Kommersant survey, there really are no pre-New Year discounts as such that were on the market before the departure of Western automakers. Chery told Kommersant that they are offering benefits in December in honor of the company’s 18th anniversary in the Russian Federation. Haval retains the direct discount programs that were in place previously. The availability of support programs was reported in Changan, indicating that “against the backdrop of expert forecasts about worsening lending conditions,” they are strengthening the loan subsidization program. In general, Kommersant’s interlocutors say that Chinese brands traditionally do not offer “New Year’s discounts.” AvtoVAZ only retains the “pick up your car in Togliatti” program, where there are additional preferences.

According to Vladimir Bespalov, in December the market will reach the level of 115-120 thousand cars sold, and by the end of the year – about 1.06 million cars. He adds that pre-New Year purchases have their own peculiarities and are unlikely to be affected by a possible increase in the Central Bank rate in December.

Olga Nikitina

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