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Covid-19 Impact: Automotive Industry

There will be a drop of 22% in light vehicle sales globally, totaling to over 70 million units

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Automotive Industry


With the current economic state due to the damaging effects of the COVID-19 outbreak across the world, it is no surprise that the sales in the automotive industry is considerably declining.

After all, unemployment rates are at an all-time high and travel is practically limited to combat the spread of the deadly disease.

Numerous countries had experienced contraction in their sales for the first quarter of 2020, with China recording a fall of 18.6% year-on-year in January and 79.1% in February. The decrease in sales have also been recorded in the US, Southeast Asia, and Europe.

The overall outlook for the year doesn’t look too well, too, as London-based information provider IHS Markit suggested that there will be a drop of 22% in light vehicle sales globally, totaling to over 70 million units.

The good news is that while the sales in the first few months of the year declined, some countries are already bouncing back. China, for instance, has recorded over 4% increase in car sales in April, marking its first increase in 22 months. Automotive manufacturing countries like Mexico and Indonesia are already resuming factory operations, albeit the limited production capacity.

There are also indications that social distancing and health concerns are actually helping spike up car sales. This is due to the fact that most of the younger generation are beginning to prefer private transportation instead of public ones in a bid to avoid contracting the virus.

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Google’s search data for April has suggested increase in car purchasing options, as well, primarily in the US and Europe. Although this does not necessarily mean increased buyers, it shows the considerable change in the opinion of consumers. Commuters have also stated in a survey that they will begin to lessen using ride-hailing services in a bid to reduce the risk.

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Robert Bagatsing
Managing Editor and Founder of GineersNow based in Dubai and Manila. Survived marketing at Harvard, Management at AIM and proud Bedan.


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