Iran Auto Market: IKCO Reports Higher Production

Imported vehicles have the smallest share with the sub-sector beginning to feel the effects of the increase in the local assembly of foreign cars
IKCO has been able to claim a 48.9% share of the overall automotive market.IKCO has been able to claim a 48.9% share of the overall automotive market.

The biggest auto group Iran Khodro has reported an increase in its market share by 1.2% year-on-year during the first month of the current fiscal (started March 20).

According to a report by Financial Tribune’s sister newspaper, Donya-e-Eqtesad, IKCO says it has 48.9% share of the overall automotive market. Furthermore, its production has seen a 17% jump in the first Iranian month Farvardin.

The company reported growth in demand for several models including its Peugeot 206 and 405 models, Suzuki’s recently face-lifted Grand Vitara and two locally designed models Dena and Samand sedans.

IKCO is currently in a transformative stage of its development. It has signed deals with Italian firm Pininfarina and other foreign automotive firms to develop a new platform of cars that should be ready in the next two years.

It is also building relations with other car companies such as the French PSA Group’s Peugeot. The Tehran-based company is on the verge of offering a new DongFeng S30 sedan which will be targeted at fleet buyers like taxi companies.


  SAIPA Lagging

Although IKCO’s main competitor SAIPA has been able to register a 45.3% growth in production, the company has lost ground to its rivals and its market share has decreased 3.8% overall y/y.

The report in the Persian-language newspaper put SAIPA’s share in the market at 35% despite the fact that it has been just as aggressive as IKCO in its new vehicle roll-out. That firm has pushed ahead with ties to China’s Brilliance in recent months with the introduction of three small and medium hatchbacks and sedans, as well as the Brilliance V5 SUV.  

One of the possible explanations for the fall in SAIPA’s market share is the recent blaze at one of the company’s local auto parts warehouses, that caused a delay in finished units entering in the market.

Although not reported to the media, the fire is believed to have hit the production line of its best-selling but substandard Pride models, the cheapest car presently in the local market.

  Other Players

But it is not only the two big players which have seen growth in the first month of the year. Private automakers have also observed a 2.6% growth in their market share reaching 10.4% of all cars sold in Iran in the 30 days.

Local private firms like Kerman Motor, MG Pars, Chery and other smaller carmakers continue to forge ahead with their affordable vehicles targeting the same buyers who would traditionally buy IKCO or SAIPA.

South Korea’ Hyundai is the latest entrant with the introduction of the i20 and more recently the i10 hatchback models; they sell their vehicles through Kerman Motor.  

  Imports Dwindling

Imported vehicles had the smallest share in the market during the period. This sub-sector is beginning to feel the effects of local assembly of foreign-made cars.

It saw a meager growth of 0.2% and its share reaching 5.7% during the one month period.

The main brands making up the bulk of imports include Hyundai, Kia and Ssanyong and luxury brands include BMW, Mercedes and Alfa Romeo.

Meanwhile, in the first month of the year, the number of cars which entered Iran increased 128% y/y. Car importers normally import the bulk of the vehicles in the first months of the Iranian year.


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