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New car sales accelerate in Jan ’21, with 51.5% YoY growth

New car sales in Puerto Rico reached 10,085 units, representing a whopping 51.6% growth versus the 6,653 units sold during the same month in 2020, the United Automobile Importers Group (GUIA) revealed.

One of the segments that showed a significant change for the month were minivans, with an increase of 99.1%, followed by vans, with an 85% jump, and sedans with an increase of 81.1% when compared to January 2020.

“The growth in January of more than 51% versus the totals of the previous year is extremely unusual in a mature market like ours, but the reality is that it responds mainly to the effect of the January 2020 earthquakes, which logically impacted sales,” said GUIA President Ricardo García.’

As part of that growth in January, the industry also saw an increase in the delivery of rental vehicles of more than 205% “given that units that could not be delivered in December due to production capacity in the factories, were delivered in January. We haven’t had a January like this in more than 15 years,” he said.

He also credited the influx of federal funds and the improbability of a two-month lockdown like the one put into effect last year to curb the spread of COVID-19 for the positive result.

GUIA is forecasting that the industry will sell 104,000 new units in 2021, exceeding the 95,000 new vehicles sold last year.

“It’s expected that, with the new administration in the US, the additional funds that had been assigned to the island will begin to arrive during this year and help to energize the economy,” García said.

“And with a significant increase in vaccination, which will help sectors start reopening in a normal way, we should begin to meet everyone’s expectations, both the public and private sectors. Without that, everything would be delayed,” he said.

“There’s a collective desire from all of us who make up the automotive industry ecosystem to be able to be an important part of the engine that contributes to our island’s economic growth and to be able to continue serving our clients safely, as we have done so far,” García said.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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