KARACHI: Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (PAMA) published monthly automobile sales data for July 2019 where passenger car sales in the country plummeted 42%YoY/26%MoM to 10,968 units during the month. Trucks sales declined 30%YoY, however, on a MoM basis demand for trucks incremented 20% in July 2019 to 407 units. Jeep sales registered notable decline of 47%YoY/51%MoM at 316 units during the month. In terms of volumetric performance, buses were the only category to record encouraging volumes with 7%YoY/64%MoM growth during July 2019. Overall auto sales for the month of July 2019 nosedived 37%YoY/13%MoM to 18,848 units. Auto sales for the month of July 2019 slumped primarily owing to notable decline in “1300cc & above” (-63YoY/-49%MoM) & “1000cc” (-54%YoY/-43%MoM) categories. Civic & City/Swift/Corolla volumes declined 68%YoY/64%YoY/57%YoY respectively whereas demand for 1000cc category vehicles i.e. Cultus /Wagon-R also recorded 27%YoY/70%YoY fall during the month. Volumetric performance of “below 1000cc” category provided some respite to passenger car sales with 11%YoY growth in July 2019 due to higher volumes for Alto (4,584 units). However, sales of Mehran/Bolan also plunged 89%YoY/75%YoY to 394/332 units. Alto sales comprised 86% of total sales in “below 1000cc category”. Total sales of Pak Suzuki Motor Company (PSMC) for the month of July 2019 clocked in at 8,375 units, depicting 23%YoY decline. With the exception of Alto, sales of all models came under pressure during the month with Swift, Cultus, Wagon-R, Mehran, Bolan & Ravi recording 64%YoY, 27%YoY, 70%YoY, 89%YoY, 75%YoY & 30%YoY decline in volumes. Alto sales constituted 55% of total volumes for PSMC in July 2019. PSMC improved its market shares 16ppsYoY to 67%. Indus Motor Company witnessed notable decline of 56%YoY in its car sales at 2,413 units during July 2019. Demand for Fortuner, Corolla & Hilux plummeted 66%YoY/62%MoM, 57%YoY/55%MoM & 48%YoY/52%MoM respectively. Consequently, Indus Motor’s market share fell 6ppsYoY to 19%. Honda Atlas Cars (HCAR) recorded 66%YoY decline in sales volume for the month of July 2019. The company’s passenger car sales (Civic & City) clocked-in at 1,452 units (-68%YoY/-31%MoM) during the month as compared to 4,609 units sold in July 2018. Moreover, BR-V sales arrived at 242 units (-35%YoY/-46%MoM) versus 372 units sold in July 2018. HCAR’s market shares declined 10ppsYoY to 14%. Truck & Bus sales arrived at 525 units where sales of Hino decreased 46%YoY followed by Master which posted 43%YoY decline in volumes during July 2019. ISUZU’s demand however largely remained intact with 308 units (+3%YoY). Tractor sales fell 20%YoY with 3,060 units sold during the month of July 2019. FIAT recorded 38%YoY/29%MoM growth whereas Massey Ferguson registered 36%YoY/29%MoM decline during the month. Going forward, analysts expect headwinds to persist for the automobile industry owing to deteriorating economic environment (rising interest rates, instability in US$/PKR parity & slowdown in GDP growth) along with imposition of adverse taxation measures, leading to significantly strained auto demand and compressed margins. Owing to this slowdown in volumes, Indus Motor and Honda Cars have already decided to shut down plants for 8-10 days each month. “Hence we expect FY20 to be a challenging year for automobile industry,” an analyst at Pearl Securities said.