Amid aims to steer Turkey towards domestic automobile production, imported car sales dropped by 4.4 percent in the first half of this year, falling to 64 percent compared to 68.4 percent in 2016.
According to reports from the Automotive Distributors' Association (ODD), the sales figures in the first six months of 2017 showed a decline in the sales of imported automobiles and light commercial vehicles.
Out the total 401,158 vehicles sold during the said period, 257,151 were imported and 144,007 were produced locally.
On the other hand, last year 68.4 percent of all vehicles sold in Turkey were imported.
According to the ODD, since 2004 the highest rate of imported car sales has been recorded in 2013 at 71.2 percent while the lowest rate was 46.6 percent recorded in 2004.
Domestically produced commercial vehicles surpass 50 pct in total sales
In the first six months of this year, 95,794 of the total 305,924 vehicles sold in the automobile market were domestically produced, while the remaining 210,130 were imported from other countries.
Meanwhile, of the total 95,234 light commercial vehicles produced, 48,213 were domestically produced and 47,021 were imported, making up 50.6 and 49.6 percent of total sales, respectively.
Renault the leader in domestic car sales
In the first six months of this year, Renault ranked first in the total number of domestic vehicles sold with 54,947 units, followed by Volkswagen with 48,786 and Fiat with 48,713. In terms of car sales, Renault led the way with 48,779, followed by Volkswagen with 36,707 and Fiat with 26,652 units.
Renault also maintained its spot as the leader in locally produced car sales with 33,586 units, followed by Toyota with 25,622 units and Fiat with 12,659.
On the other hand, Volkswagen led the way in imported car sales with 36,707 units, followed by Opel with 18,790 units and Dacia with 17,154.
In the light commercial vehicles segment of the market, Ford ranked first with a total of 28,463 units, followed by Fiat with 22,061 units and Volkswagen with 12,079 units. In the category of imported light commercial vehicles, Volkswagen posted 12,079 units, while Renault and Citroen sold 6,168 and 4,661 units, respectively.
In domestic light commercial vehicle sales, Ford ranked first with 26,870 units, followed by Fiat with 19,479 units and Isuzu with 955 units.
First domestic automobile to hit market in 2019
Speaking at the ordinary general meeting of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) in May, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said, "Today, I have a proposal for the TOBB General Assembly. I will do this everywhere because I yearn to see the success of this sector as a son of this nation. I hope the TOBB community will produce a 100-percent locally produced vehicle."
Meanwhile, the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK) has launched a project in aims to produce a domestic car.
Science, Industry and Technology Minister Faruk Özlü has said that the Ministry aims to put the first domestic automobile on the market in 2019.
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