After sharing with you a couple of world updates (Top 150 best-selling models in June 2012 and our monthly World Roundup for July 2012), its is with a solemn tone that I announce to you that today is a special day.
Today I am launching the Africa Project, to try and bring African countries to a similar level of data and car sales information as the rest of the world.
If you live in Africa or have data on any African country please be sure to comment on this post and I will get in touch with you directly.
Picture by Leonid Plotkin, all rights reserved.
In terms of new car sales, Africa is the last frontier, with only a few countries having set up regular reports. However, no less than 1.4 million cars were sold on the African continent in 2011, and even though it is still plagued with war and poverty in some parts, it is now developing fast. The African Bank of Development predicts 4.5 percent economic growth for the region in 2012 and 4.8 percent in 2013, with peaks at 6.9 percent in Western Africa and 5.6 percent in the East.
Indeed, one of the things I noticed during my stay in France over the last couple of weeks is the revitalised interest, focus and introspection towards the African continent, with which France has long running cultural and economical links. French rap band Sexion d’Assaut recently released the song ‘African’ (the video clip shot in Senegalese streets is above), a harsh, realistic and at times humorous view on how Africans are perceived in France and abroad.
In the car world, this renewed interest translates into statements like Peugeot’s, refocusing its energy on sub-Saharan Africa in 2012 to build on their amazing success in Northern Africa and notably Algeria.
On top of French marques getting more active, Japanese brands like Toyota, Nissan or Honda have had decades of strong sales in the region, and lately Chinese manufacturers have landed en masse. This makes Africa a fascinating continent to follow, and this is why I want to make it a special focus in my search for worldwide car sales data.
Problem is, new car sales reporting is still quite disorganised and I only have data for a few countries. South Africa, where the Toyota Hilux and VW Polo Vivo (a facelifted previous generation Polo) are the most popular, and by far the biggest African car market at 570,000 sales in 2011, is one. But Hyundai, Kia and Mercedes don’t report model data…
Egypt, #3 market in the continent at 176,000 registrations last year, where the Hyundai Verna, an Accent from two generations ago, commands 10 percent+ market share is the only other country I am able to cover monthly. Algeria, #2 with close to 300,000 registrations last year and with the Renault Symbol (a previous generation Clio with a boot) in pole position, used to belong to that group, but my monthly source dried up.
In fact, with Morocco, producing the Dacia Lodgy since last February, and Ethiopia, thanks to local car company Holland Car assembling Lifan models in the country, the above countries are the only ones in Africa to assemble cars, now that production of the Peugeot 504 stopped in Nigeria. But still quite a lot of holes in the data published by these countries.
So this is where you come in dear readers.
Thanks to your help, there are already a few more African countries with sales information on my site Best Selling Cars Blog, like Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Ghana, Madagascar, Mauritius, Namibia, Senegal and Sudan. No models data for any of these countries however and therefore still a lot of unknowns…
Picture by turkairo, all rights reserved.
If you work in the car industry anywhere in Africa, within organisations that would have the potential to bring together some car sales data, or if you just happen to have sales info, please do get in touch by commenting on this post. I would like to build reliable sales data for as many African countries as possible so everyone can have a better understanding of this fascinating and fast evolving market.
Picture by hn, all rights reserved.
I may have the possibility to travel to these regions in the future to report about them myself, but for now my own experience of Africa is very limited. I travelled to South Africa,Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe in 2007 – you can see my photo albums by clicking on the country, and to Egypt in 2008, where I was stunned to see the amount of Speranza (rebadged Chery assembled locally) in the streets and around the pyramids…
So I’m counting on you all to improve the coverage on Africa! Many thanks in advance for all your help!
Below you will find direct links to various articles about car sales in 47 African countries.
Please note that for most of them, the information and estimations displayed in the articles is the result of observation of YouTube videos of the streets of theses cities and does not constitutes official data. (Because I need you to fill the blanks!)
Source: Manufacturers, usual sources for countries updated monthly, YouTube.
Matt Gasnier, based in Sydney, Australia, runs a blog named Best Selling Cars, dedicated to counting cars all over the world.