October Car Sales in Russia Fall 5%
Deliveries of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles in Russia shrank 5% to 152,100 units in October, the Moscow-based Assn. of European Businesses reports.
Sales improved for market leaders Lada (+5% to 32,300 units), Kia (+1% to 19,800) and Renault (+5% to 12,500). But sales declined at Hyundai (-3% to 15,400 cars), and among seven of Russia’s 15 second-tier brands.
October’s slump marks the seventh continuous month of year-on-year sales decline. AEB notes that the shrinkage—mainly among the market’s smaller players—has been eroding gains made in 2017-2018 as the market recovered from a collapse over the previous four years. A glum AEB says it sees nothing coming anytime soon to break the retrenchment.
Annual sales in Russia slid from a peak of 2.94 million units in 2012 to 1.42 million in 2016, according to AEB. By the end of last year, volume had climbed back to 1.80 million.
But AEB says sales this year have fallen steadily since April. Total volume through the first 10 months of 2019 was 1.42 million vehicles, down 2% compared with the same period in 2018.
To know that 3,000 cars have been delivered since October 2015 would undoubtedly result in a shrug: in 2017 Toyota delivered 387,081 Camrys, so that 3,000 is less than one percent, and this is in one year, not just over two.
The common wisdom seems to be that midsize cars have pretty much had it in the U.S. new car market.
What happens if that $2.29 a gallon goes up by a couple of bucks a year from now? How are the pickup, SUV and crossover sales going to be then?