New car sales in Puerto Rico remain flat in April
Puerto Rico’s new-car dealerships sold 10,870 units in April, remaining flat when compared to the 10,833 vehicles sold in the same month in 2022, the United Automobile Importers Group (GUIA, in Spanish) confirmed.
However, the nonprofit organization, established in 2006 to address issues related to the automotive industry, noted that April sales reflected “a substantial improvement based on a greater availability of new vehicles in most brands.”
The total number of units sold in the first four months of this year is 40,416, which represents a decrease of 7.18% compared to the 43,543 units sold in the same period of the previous year.
Despite reflecting a contraction in demand in the January-April period, when comparing the level of sales for each of the four months that have elapsed, GUIA said a demand that is “among the highest levels in the last 15 years” is still perceived.
However, retail demand is being pressured by macroeconomic issues such as inflation and high interest rates, which are reducing consumer purchasing power
“The drop in retail sales is offset by an improvement in fleet sales. Due to the lack of inventory in the past years, fleet sales were limited, so by improving the availability of distributors’ inventory, a higher level of sales has been observed in this channel,” said José R. Ordeix, president of GUIA.
“In the January-April 2023 period, fleet sales represented 7.4% of total demand; versus the same period in 2022, fleet sales represented 3.47% of total demand,” he said.
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