* See the Top 10 best-selling models and brands by clicking on the title *
OICA data indicates the Nigerian new light vehicle market has halved in 2015 to sink to 26.400 units from 53.900 in 2014. Only a fraction (11.526 exactly) were imported through Nigeria’s ports and this is the data we have at our disposal – it doesn’t therefore cover the entire Nigerian market and comparisons with last year’s figures are therefore made difficult. Toyota holds 56.6% of this section of the market ahead of Mitsubishi at 21.2% and Hyundai at 4.7%. Isuzu and Ford round up the Top 5 while Chinese manufacturer GAC Trumpchi makes its entrance inside the Top 10 at #9. Model-wise, only three nameplates account for almost two-thirds of the studied market (63.2%): the Toyota Hiace is in the lead ahead of the Toyota Hilux and Mitsubishi L200. 2014’s leader, the Toyota Corolla, is down to #4. Note these are only imports and don’t include local production.
The Nigerian automotive market is currently going through a transition phase from full importer towards an aspiration to become one of Africa’s main production hubs. According to the National Automotive Design and Development Council, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Nissan, Peugeot and Volkswagen cars and SUV, Shacman and MAN Trucks, and Ashok-Leyland buses are now assembled in Nigeria. In August 2015, the Nigerian government awarded licences for 12 new vehicle assembly plants to manufacturers, and a lot of them are Chinese. They include Toyota (Century Autos), Renault (Dana Motors), Joylong, Dongfeng (Coscharis Auto), FAW (Perfection Motors), Tata, Higer (Globe Motors) and Sinotruk.
With a total population of 182 million inhabitants and a middle-class now amounting to 38 million potential buyers, the Nigerian new car market potential is generally estimated in the long term at one million annual units, which would position it today as the #1 market in Africa. We are still very far from this target, yet PriceWaterhouseCoopers recently published a study projecting that local production increase will propel it to 2 million annual units in 2035 and as much 7.6 million in 2050. If that’s the case, by the Africa could potentially start to replace China as the world’s engine of growth.
Full Year 2015 Top 10 models and brands vs. FY14 figures below.