After 11% Growth Last Year Brazil’s Car Industry Sees Another 10% Boost in 2010

Car on the road New car sales in Brazil could rise 10% this year as Latin America’s largest economy expands the most since 2007, the country’s dealership federation said on Tuesday. Sales in 2009 increased 11% to 3.14 million units.

“Our expectation is that in 2010 we recover all we lost and still have positive growth” as demand improves with the economy, Sergio Reze, president of Fenabrave, as the group is known, told reporters in São Paulo.

Brazil’s economy is forecasted to grow 5.2% this year, the most since 2007, according to a weekly central bank survey published Monday. The country’s GDP probably shrank 0.24% in 2009, the survey found.

Vehicle sales in Brazil jumped 11% to 3.14 million in 2009, as tax breaks and a rebound in consumer lending lured buyers, said Fenabrave. Sales rose 51% to 293,030 in December, compared with the same month last year.

Passenger car and light truck sales in December climbed 51% to 277,944, while buses and trucks gained 42% to 15,086, said Fenabrave. For the year, passenger car and light truck sales rose 13% to 3.01 million, while sales of buses and trucks fell 12% to 131,744, according to Fenabrave.

Motorcycle sales totaled 1.6 million units last year, which represents a 16.42% drop compared to 2008. However in December sales reached 157.978, which is 19.19% higher than the previous month and 10.18% more than a year ago.

General Motors, Volkswagen and Ford Motor plan to invest a combined 14.2 billion Reais (8.3 billion USD) in coming years to increase production capacity and develop products in Brazil.

According to Fenabrave, Italy’s Fiat led sales last year with 24.49% of the market (736.961) followed by Volkswagen with 22.74% (684.387); General Motors, 19.79% (595.424); Ford, 10.10% (304.024) and Honda, 4.18% (125.869).-

Taking into consideration only cars, Volkswagen comes first with 25.26%; Fiat 24.99% and GM, 20.26%. However in commercial vehicles Fiat leads with 22.13%; GM follows with 17.58%; Ford, 13.01% and Volkswagen, 10.98%.

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