Russian with Chinese
Car sales are still well below last year’s results. In July, AEB counted 32,412 units, down 74.9% from the same period in 2021. At the same time, in comparison with the failed May and June, there has been an increase. In fact, the market returned to April results – then 32,706 cars were sold. The Avtostat agency, based on the data of electronic TCP, gives other figures: 35,583 against 28 thousand.
The top 10 brands according to AEB are the same players, but Russian and Chinese brands are improving their positions, South Korean Kia and Hyundai are frozen, and European ones (Renault, VW, Skoda) are “losing height” as stocks are depleted. Only eight manufacturers managed to sell more than a thousand cars in July. Sales of Japanese mass brands are in the hundreds, while premium brands are in the dozens.
The main driver of July growth was AvtoVAZ, which managed to resume the production of Grants, albeit in a simplified configuration. If in June he sold only 7,484 cars, then in July it was already 10,323. There is an increase in comparison with June for other Russian brands: GAZ and UAZ. Programs of concessional lending and leasing played a certain role here.
Compared to June, Chinese brands also showed growth, and not only Haval and Geely. Changan and DFM were the only ones to surpass 2021 results, according to AEB statistics. According to experts, the low base effect played a role here, first of all. Thus, in July Changan sold 523 vehicles (+24%), and DFM — 203 (+298%). In addition, buyers swept away several dozen stale Lifans.
— If Changan made a full-fledged representation and worked well with dealers, their sales would be several times higher. The problem is not in logistics or covid, but in the absence of a strategic decision about Russia,” says Sergey Burgazliev, an independent automotive industry consultant. He added that now only Chinese cars can be stably delivered to Russia.
Chery’s achievements again remained outside the AEB statistics: the Chinese manufacturer now reports once a quarter. According to Avtostat, in July 2577 cars of this brand were registered, plus 1012 models of the premium Exeed brand.
Land of the setting sun
In the Top 25 bestsellers of the market for July, there are only four Chinese models, Russian, and ten South Korean ones. Of the Japanese, only the Mazda CX-5 remained on the list.
The first place is taken by Lada Granta with a score of 6541 cars, followed by Vesta (1641 units), which has not been able to resume full-fledged production. The most popular foreign car was the Hyundai Creta crossover (1306 cars), it outperformed even the Kia Rio (1161 units). Another recent bestseller, the Hyundai Solaris, saw an unprecedented fall in July, dropping to 19th position (385 units). He let the even larger and more expensive Sonata sedan pass ahead. The most popular Chinese car according to AEB remains Haval Jolion – 1050 cars.
— The dynamics of sales is mainly affected by a significant shortage of cars, which is only getting worse. The results of sales of Hyundai Solaris were affected by the suspension of the plant in St. Petersburg in March, in connection with which the stocks of finished products ran out, – said Alexei Starikov, Deputy General Director for Sales of New Cars at Avilon AG.
According to the results of the coming months, the market will continue to show a similar picture, according to experts and market players interviewed by Izvestia.
– The main problem of recent months is a sharp decline in the supply of cars on the market, associated with the suspension of production of almost all enterprises. Now the situation has changed, at some plants, in particular at AvtoVAZ and Haval, it was possible to restart the production of cars. Given these trends, we can say that the “bottom” has been passed. Nevertheless, there is still no need to talk about market saturation. Apparently, over the next months we will see a gradual increase in sales – approximately at the level of 40 thousand cars per month, – Vladimir Bespalov, an expert in the automotive market, told Izvestia.
He believes that AvtoVAZ models will retain their leadership among the most popular cars, and Chinese brands will also take an increasing share of sales. The resumption of production at the factories of Korean and European brands in the coming months is unlikely and, most likely, they will gradually lose ground.
According to the forecasts of AG Avilon, dealers will have enough stock of cars for 2-4 months of trading.
— Until the end of the year, nothing will fundamentally change, next year is difficult to predict, but most likely the first quarter will remain the same. I don’t believe that Nissan, Stellantis and Toyota will launch before the end of the year. If this happens, then at best in the first days of March, – Sergey Burgazliev believes.
What will happen to prices
According to Avtostat, prices for new cars practically did not grow in July. Avilon AG also confirmed that significant price fluctuations in the industry have already been overcome.
— Compared to the peak positions that we observed in the spring, prices are now markedly reduced. While we do not predict a further decrease, there are no prerequisites for this on the market now, – said Alexey Starikov. At the same time, he admitted that premium segment cars will become more expensive in the future, against the backdrop of the depletion of dealers’ stocks.
– Now, for certain models, prices are being adjusted downward – both in the new car market and in the secondary one. But it is difficult to single out a general trend – the market is still very volatile and reacts differently to any changes, – says Yulia Ovchinnikova, development director of the Klyuchavto auto holding.