Car production drops in Jan as local sales slow

Car production drops in Jan as local sales slow

File photo: Bangkok Post
File photo: Bangkok Post

Car production in Thailand fell 12.46% in January from a year earlier to 142,102 units as domestic sales slumped, the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) said on Thursday.

Domestic car sales fell 16.4% in January from a year earlier, hurt by tightened conditions for auto loans, said Surapong Paisitpattanapong, a spokesman for the FTI’s automotive industry division.

Car exports also dipped 0.1% year-on-year, he said.

Thailand is Southeast Asia’s biggest auto production centre and an export base for some of the world’s top carmakers, including Toyota and Honda, with pickup trucks among the key vehicles made. It has also ben attracting large investments from Chinese electric vehicle makers.

The decline in output was largely due to banks tightening loans for pickup trucks, Mr Surapong said.

The FTI predicts a slight pickup in car production to 1.9 million units this year, from 1.84 million last year, which was a 2.2% drop from 2022.

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