Business

July vehicle sales fall for sixth month; MMC's down 60%

Domestic vehicle sales in July slipped 2.0 percent from a year before for the sixth consecutive month of decline, with those by scandal-tainted Mitsubishi Motors Corp. plunging 60.1 percent, the Japan Automobile Dealers Association said Monday.

Total sales came to 362,208 vehicles. Despite sluggish overall sales of new cars, excluding minivehicles, regular car sales inched up 0.2 percent to 316,525 units, the association said.

Sales of trucks dropped 15.2 percent to 44,088 units and those of buses came to 1,595 units, down 14.3 percent.

By manufacturer, sales of Mitsubishi Motors Corp. continued to slide, falling 60.1 percent for the eighth straight month of decline to 4,711 vehicles.

The margin of drop at the automaker was slightly down from June’s 64.3 percent, which was the biggest in the history of the automaker on a monthly year-on-year basis. July was the third straight month for MMC to see a sales decline of more than 50 percent.

Sales of Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corp., Mitsubishi’s former truck and bus division, saw a sales drop of 29.9 percent to 5,036 units, the association said.

Mitsubishi Motors has been reeling from a series of defect coverup scandals, causing consumer confidence in carmakers in the Mitsubishi group to erode.

Toyota Motor Corp., the nation’s top car producer, chalked up sales growth of 3.3 percent to 160,374 vehicles in the latest month. Honda Motor Co. registered sales growth of 23.8 percent and Mazda Motor Corp. 0.3 percent.

Nissan Motor Co., the country’s second-largest automaker, saw its sales fall 13.8 percent.

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