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Puerto Rico new auto sales down 6.7% Y-O-Y in August

Puerto Rico’s total new auto sales for the month of August, and collectively since January, have reflected year-over-year drops, partly due to a shortfall in production components.

The United Automobile Importers Group (GUIA, in Spanish) revealed that last month, a total of 10,031 new vehicles were sold in Puerto Rico, a 6.7% drop from the 10,755 units sold the same month in 2021.

Cumulatively, the demand in Puerto Rico for the January-August period totaled 84,125 units, which reflects a decrease of -5.6% when compared to the same period in 2021.

The retail demand for January-August 2022 reflects a drop -3.64% when comparing the accrued number for 2022 of 80,919 units versus the 83,982 units of the same period in 2021.

The largest drop is reflected in the vehicle fleet segment, in which a contraction of 37.8% was registered, when comparing the accumulated number for 2022 of 3,206 units, versus 5,157 units in the same period of the previous year.

Through August, the following six segments reflect growth in Puerto Rico versus the same period of the previous year:

  • Sports car with 362 units and a growth of 223.2%,
  • Sub-compact 2-door segment with 1,299 units and a 26.5% growth,
  • Compact pickup segment with 7,515 units and a growth of 37.5%,
  • Medium and large pickup segment with 5,869 units and a growth of 6.61%,
  • Sub-compact sedan segment with 9,311 units and a growth of 6.37%, and,
  • Medium SUVs with 3,037 units and a growth of 6.37%.

The other 12 segments that make up the market reflect negative growth.

When broken down by brands, Japanese automaker Toyota is leading the way so far this year, with 2,372 vehicles sold, which however shows a drop of 360 units sold versus the same period in 2021. The automaker is still commanding about 23% of the local market.

Korean automaker Hyundai came in second, with 1,898 units sold from January to August, a drop of 19 vehicles when compared to the 1,917 sold in the same period in 2021, according to GUIA’s statistics. This gives Hyundai a share of nearly 19% of Puerto Rico’s new vehicle sales market.

“We continue to monitor the behavior of sales and the supply of products in the industry. The post-pandemic trend continues to reflect a shortage of products due to the lack of important components in the production processes,” said GUIA President Jose R. Ordeix.

“However, the demand for cars continues to show a solid behavior and its drop is mainly attributable to the lack of inventory,” he said.

GUIA reminded consumers of the importance of buying their new cars from authorized dealers of the brand “to ensure the best service and honor all the guarantees available on their purchase.”

Author Details
Author Details
Business reporter with 30 years of experience writing for weekly and daily newspapers, as well as trade publications in Puerto Rico. My list of former employers includes Caribbean Business, The San Juan Star, and the Puerto Rico Daily Sun, among others. My areas of expertise include telecommunications, technology, retail, agriculture, tourism, banking and most other segments of Puerto Rico’s economy.

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