P.R.’s new car sales grow 37.3% in April, driven by insurance payments

Written by  //  May 16, 2018  //  Auto  //  No comments

Puerto Rico’s new car sales have seen a boost from insurance payments post-Hurricane María and an increase in inventories.

New car sales in Puerto Rico reached 8,105 units in April, representing a 37.3 percent increase over the 5,903 units sold during the same month last year, the United Group of Automobile Importers (known as GUIA for its initials in Spanish) confirmed.

“Apart from the launch of new models in the growth segments, we have had — as an industry — a recent increase in inventories due to what could not arrive or were canceled after Hurricane María,” Ricardo García, president of GUIA, said.

Puerto Rico’s growth segments in April included pickups trucks, with 76.1 percent followed by SUVs with 56.8 percent, he added.

“In addition, we continue to take into consideration the number of vehicles that suffered damage during the hurricanes and the fact that there is still cash flow from the insurance companies,” García said.

“As we have previously commented, this has allowed customers to get a new car. We have to keep an eye on the market once this effect begins to reduce, but for now, it continues,” he added.

The trade group confirmed that its GUIAEduca education committee will present the second seminar of its “Economic Reform & Outlook for Puerto Rico” series, aimed at professionals in the auto and other industries.

The event is slated for May 23 at the Vivo Beach Club in Carolina, with participation from a number of speakers, namely: José Carrión III, chairman of the Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico; Economic Development and Commerce Secretary Manuel Laboy; CPA Kenneth Rivera; and Zoimé Álvarez, vice president of the Puerto Rico Bankers Association.

GUIA is an independent, nonprofit organization created in 2006 to manage issues directly related to the automobile industry, as well as Puerto Rico’s general economy. GUIA members represent 23 auto brands and more than 96 percent of total new vehicle sales in Puerto Rico.

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