Compared to previous figures, the Japanese vehicle manufacturer also improved on its March 2020 sales performance by 92%, with Suzuki’s network of 72 dealers setting their own new retail record of 1 962 vehicles in March 2021. This is significant when taking into account that Suzuki broke through the 2000-mark for the first time in October 2020, when its sales of 2 032 vehicles included retail (dealers) and bulk sales (rental and government sales).
Naamsa also reports that Suzuki now has a passenger vehicle market share of 8.54% and a total industry market share of 5.24%. It means that Suzuki is still outperforming the general vehicle market, despite a better-than-expected month for most vehicle brands.
“Suzuki set several sales records on its way to recording its best year ever in 2020, despite the hard lockdown and a general disruption in vehicle imports owing to the pandemic. This was followed in 2021 with two new sales records in February and March, with the focus on sustainable growth in the coming months,” said André Venter, divisional manager of sales and marketing at Suzuki Auto South Africa, in a media statement.
Venter continued by saying that the exceptional performance is testament to Suzuki’s hard-working dealer network, which pulled out all the stops to deliver cars to the growing list of new Suzuki customers.
“We also believe that our product range is now perfectly suited to the new economic realities of many South Africans. Salary cuts and uncertainty have forced us to be prudent with our hard-earned salaries, and we are all looking for something that is not only affordable to purchase, but also to fuel and maintain.”
While Suzuki’s entire product range answers this need for affordable and reliable motoring, a number of its models stood out in March. The Suzuki Swift remains its best-selling model with 749 units sold, while the S-Presso was delivered to 527 new customers in March. The new Suzuki Vitara Brezza also had an exceptional month with 390 sales.
Naamsa reported on 1 April that the passenger vehicle market improved by 24.2% in March compared to the same month in 2020. This was of course the first month of lockdown restrictions in 2020 and it implies that in the next few months it will significantly outperform its comparative monthly sales of the previous year.
“It will take a long time before South Africa’s new vehicle market is back to pre-pandemic levels. We are committed to work with our dealer network to ensure that waiting lists are as short as possible, that our pricing, service plan and warranty support remain of the best in class and that our parts availability is undisrupted,” Venter said.