According to the latest report of the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA), auto sales in March 2018 with 28,216 units, representing a 7.8% gain compared to the previous month's 26,176 unit sales total.

With the TRAIN (tax reform) law driven excise tax taking more effect on mass market models, automakers took another beating for the third month in a row, reflecting a 22.8% decline compared to the previous year's 36,561 unit total.

Taking the bigger hit was the Commercial Vehicle segment with 30% drop as the Passenger Car segment reflected a 7.8% decline.

Passenger car (PC) sales totaled 10,925 units, covering 38.72% of the market. Commercial vehicles (CV) continued to dominate the market at 17,291 units or 61.28% of the market.

"The decline in sales in the 1st quarter of 2018 is not unexpected.  The impact of the change in excise tax rates under the TRAIN law was anticipated for this particular period. We remain confident that the market will improve in the coming months," said CAMPI president Atty. Rommel Gutierrez.

Light Commercial Vehicles (LCV) led the CV subsegments, comprising 70.39% of CV sales with 12,171 units sold; 5.5% more than last month's 11,540 total. AUV/MPV segment sold 3,899 units, down 28.6% from 5,463. Truck and bus sales were mostly green. Light truck sales gained 52.1%, selling a total of 628 units compared to previous month's 413 unit total. Category 4 Heavy Duty Truck and Bus sales totaled 420 units (+12.9%) compared to last month's 372 units. Category 5 Heavy Duty Truck and Bus slid down to 173 units, (-11.7%) compared to last month's 196 units.

Sales performance were mostly negative for most brands. The top 3 advancers*: Volkswagen (ACEI) sales went up by 37.2%; Toyota (TMP) increased sales by 16.2%; Mitsubishi (MMPC) increased by 11.1% . Top three decliners* were Isuzu (IPC) with a 17.8% drop; Foton (FMPI) declined by 11.4%; and Suzuki (SPI) continues its downtrend by 9.1% .

*only brands selling more than 100 units per month were included.

The top five performing manufacturers for the month of March are:

1. Toyota – 11,406 units (40.42% market share)

2. Mitsubishi – 6,734 units (23.87% market share)

3. Honda – 2,039 units (7.23% market share)

4. Nissan – 1,974 units (7.00% market share)

5. Ford – 1,851 units (6.56% market share)

Toyota Motor Philippines Corporation continues its commanding lead of the market with 40.06-percent. Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation follows in second with 22.73-percent. Ford Motor Company Philippines, Inc. hangs on to third with 7.49-percent. Honda Cars Philippines, Inc. is in fourth position with 7.18-percent, and Nissan Philippines, Inc. improves in fifth with 6.72-percent.