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Total Africa Auto Industry Sales (All Years)

Total Africa Passenger Cars Sales & Trends (Since 2005)

According to the OICA, the total passenger car sales in Africa in 2022 was 790,100 units, a decrease of 1.5% from 2021. South Africa is the largest car market in Africa, accounting for over 38.5% of the continent’s sales volume. Morocco is the second largest car market in Africa, with sales of 143,300 units.

The decline in car sales in Africa is due to a number of factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic, chip shortages, and economic challenges. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted supply chains and led to production delays, while chip shortages have also affected production. Economic challenges, such as high unemployment and low incomes, have also dampened demand for cars.

Despite the decline in car sales, there are some positive trends in the African passenger car market. The market share of SUVs has increased significantly in recent years, and it is expected to continue to grow in the coming years. In 2022, SUVs accounted for 40% of new car sales in Africa, up from 25% in 2019.

The African passenger car market is expected to grow in the coming years, but it is unlikely to return to the levels seen before the COVID-19 pandemic. The market is expected to grow at a slower pace than in previous years, and the shift to SUVs is expected to continue.

African Automotive Market Trends

Africa is a vast and diverse continent with different regions experiencing varied economic growth rates, infrastructural developments, and socio-political situations. One of the defining characteristics of the African automotive market is the dominance of used car sales, particularly those imported from Europe, Japan, and the United States. High import duties on new cars, combined with lower average income levels, have made used cars a preferred choice for many African consumers.

Some countries have imposed age limits on imported used cars to combat environmental concerns and encourage local assembly. For instance, countries like Kenya have regulations on the age of imported used vehicles to ensure environmental and safety standards.

With urban areas across the continent seeing rapid growth and congestion, there’s been an increasing demand for smaller, more compact cars suitable for city driving. As pockets of the continent have witnessed economic growth and an expanding middle class, there’s been a subsequent rise in the demand for new and modern cars, although this trend is more evident in select countries and urban areas. Due to challenging road conditions in many parts of Africa, there’s a preference for robust vehicles, especially SUVs and pickups, which are often deemed more durable and versatile.

Several countries, including Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa, have tried to promote local car assembly and manufacturing through incentives and partnerships with global automakers. Brands like Toyota, Nissan, and Volkswagen have, at various points, established or expanded their manufacturing or assembly operations in Africa.

While the penetration of electric vehicles (EVs) remains relatively low compared to other continents, there’s growing interest in EVs, particularly in countries with better infrastructure like South Africa. However, the high costs and lack of charging infrastructure have been barriers.

Access to vehicle financing remains a challenge in many African countries. While there’s been some growth in financing options, it’s not as widespread or accessible as in more developed markets.

Africa Passenger Car Sales

Charts & Trends

Africa Passenger Car Sales by Country