Ever since the year 2021 began, the automotive industry’s top 10 rankings in sales have been shifting like tectonic plates in an earthquake—perhaps shaken by the prolonged pandemic’s impact on the economy.
Except for Toyota Motor PH Corp. and Mitsubishi Motors PH Corp., the undisputed Numero Uno and runner-up, respectively, the 3rd, 4th and 5th spots have been up for grabs.
In January, 6th placer Ford Motor Co PH, Inc. suddenly leapfrogged over No. 5 Suzuki PH, Inc. and No. 4 Hyundai Asia Resources, Inc. to capture 4th place, while Suzuki outsold Hyundai to remain in the Magic 5. Nissan PH, Inc. was relatively safe in 3rd place with a 601 edge in unit sales over Ford.
But in February, Nissan’s No. 3 perch appeared shaky as it posted the lowest number of sales that month among the Magic 5. In fact, Suzuki outscored Nissan in February, thus retaining 5th place with its product line of small automobiles versus the other four players in the Magic 5 who all produce big pickup trucks and SUVs.
GIANT KILLER. In February, Suzuki increased market share with the budget-priced S-Presso mini crossover, the versatile Carry commercial mini truck and the 7-seat Ertiga compact crossover as its best-seller. Suzuki can be described as a giant killer, outperforming brands making bigger vehicles as it continues to design and produce small ones.
Year-to-date March, marking the end of the first quarter, saw the same brands still occupying the Magic 5, but 3rd placer Nissan was in great danger as YTD it sold only four more units than Ford, which occupied No. 4. In the month of March alone, both Ford and Suzuki outsold Nissan.
If we go by the joint report of the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA), April 2021 has been the best month for Suzuki so far this year.
BEST MONTH. April was the month when Suzuki registered 6,390 YTD sales, enabling it to jump from 5th to 4th place which had been vacated by Ford when it scored April YTD sales of 6,562 versus Nissan’s 6,221. Nissan, up there as No. 3 since mid-2019, was relegated to No. 5 (see Magic 5 chart.)
Among the three – Ford, Suzuki, and Nissan – Suzuki with April sales of 1,695 units, was the best performer for the month.
And since Suzuki is only 172 unit sales YTD behind 3rd placer Ford, Japan’s small car specialist has reason to to aim for the No. 3 spot.
The surge in sales of the Suzuki brand can be attributed to the diversity, practicality and affordability of its 11 models and 75 dealerships nationwide. Among the 11, the top 3 best-sellers as of April were the Ertiga (25.8% of total sales), Carry (21.47%), and Dzire (16.9%).
Aida Sevilla Mendoza is fascinated by everything about cars: their power, styling, design, technology, craftmanship, exciting history of motor sport through the years, and the ever-evolving industry that creates them. But above all, she enjoys driving, especially on a traffic-free expressway where she feels the connection bonding her and the car.