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New luxury car sales fall 50pc in half year

Porsche Cayenne Turbo
A 2019 Porsche Cayenne Turbo. PHOTO | COURTESY 

Sales of new luxury cars fell 50 percent in the first half ended June on the backdrop of franchise and supply chain disruptions.

Data from the Kenya Motor Industry Association (KMI) shows that sales of all the high-end brands, including BMW, Mercedes and Land Rover declined to 69 units in the review period against 137 the year before.

The slump was much deeper than the 2.5 percent sales drop in the overall new vehicle market to 6,294 units in the same period.

This has been linked to stockouts of several luxury car models following global manufacturers’ production decisions and changes in the ownership of franchises.

Porsches and Bentleys, for instance, were out of stock for four months until May in what the local dealerships attributed to delays in sourcing the 2019 models.

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Unit sales of Porsche dropped to 10 in the review period from 30 a year earlier while those of Bentley remained flat at three.

The new model of the fastest-selling Porsche model (Cayenne) was recently introduced at a price of about Sh12 million inclusive of taxes.

Porsches and Bentleys are sold by separate dealerships whose ultimate parent company is logistics firm Multiple Group.

BMW sales also suffered after the German car franchise was transferred from Simba Corporation to Inchcape Kenya early this year. Its orders dropped to three from 11, with Inchcape only starting to sell the cars last month.

DT Dobie could get a major sales boost later this year after the Judiciary published plans to buy 121 Mercedes cars for judges and other staff.

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