Imported car sales grow in March

Imported car sales grow in March

Sales of imported cars in Korea grew 8.1 percent in March from a year ago, on benefits of an extended tax cut, data showed Wednesday.

According to the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association, a total of 24,094 foreign cars were registered last month, compared to 22,280 units last year. Sales in March also surged 53.7 percent from 15,671 units in February, it added.

Sales of foreign cars may have recovered due to the government extending its tax cut program for new car owners until June, the association said.

To promote automobile consumption, the government offered a 30 percent cut on the special consumption tax levied on new car owners.

“This month, the tax reduction gave a positive impact on the sales of imported cars along with automakers’ active promotions and the increase of business days (compared to February),” said Yoon Dae-sung, executive managing director of KAIDA.

German companies led the growth in sales.

Mercedes-Benz topped monthly sales with 5,162 units, 41.9 percent up from last year. BMW ranked second with 4,317 units, showing a 7.8 percent increase from last year. This was followed by Volkswagen and Audi which sold 3,663 and 2,552 units respectively.

European automakers dominated the imported car segment with 80.7 percent market share, followed by Japanese brands at 12.4 percent and U.S. companies at 6.9 percent.

Mercedes-Benz E 220 BlueTEC was the best-selling imported car in March with 1,526 units sold. Volkswagen Golf 2.0 TDI came in second with 1508 units sold.

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