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Economic slowdown hits sales

Higher interest rates have also dampened consumer spending considerably, reports MIA.
Posted on 03 April, 2024
Economic slowdown hits sales

The Motor Industry Association (MIA) says continued soft demand for new vehicles in March can be attributed to the wider economic slowdown New Zealand is currently facing. 

“Higher interest rates to combat inflation have also dampened consumer spending considerably,” says chief executive Aimee Wiley.

Total new-vehicle registrations last month came in at 11,616, which was 27.4 per cent – or 4,381 units – lower than March 2023. The figure was also down 44.7 per cent, or by 9,388 units, from the same month in 2022. 

On a year-to-date basis, the MIA reports this year’s market is 10.8 per cent and 4,091 units down compared to 2023. It is also 27.8 per cent and 13,056 units lower than 2022, and 23.4 per cent and 7,951 units below 2021’s tally after three months.

As for motive power in March, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) claimed a 4.5 per market share with 521 registrations.

Plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) notched up 1.9 per cent with 226 units, 2,577 hybrids were sold for 22.2 per cent and 8,292 vehicles with internal combustions engines accounted for 71.4 per cent of the market.

March’s top five BEVs were the Tesla Model 3 with 125 units, its Model Y on 74 units, the MG 4, pictured, with 42, Volkswagen’s ID.4 with 28 units and BYD’s Dolphin on 20 units.

The top five PHEVs were Mitsubishi’s Eclipse Cross on 32 units, its Outlander on 31, the Mini Countryman with 30, Mazda’s CX-60 on 17 and the Land Rover Range Rover Sport with 13.

As for mild hybrids in March, the top five were all Toyotas – the RAV4 with 790 units, Corolla Cross on 181, Yaris Cross on 147, Yaris with 134 and Corolla on 112.

Last month’s top three segments were pick up/chassis cab on 25.4 per cent, medium SUVs with 22.8 per cent and compact SUVs with 22.1 per cent.