Car Sales Slow in 2017

New cars at the Eilat port. (Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

After six years, the upward trend in Israeli car sales has been reversed. A total of 281,563 vehicles were delivered in 2017, 1.8 percent fewer than in 2016. December, usually a weak month for car sales, saw 5,798 vehicles delivered, 21 percent fewer than in the previous December.

One third of the cars sold in 2017 were “off-road” vehicles, either in their technical details or exterior styling. That was a significant increase over the numbers of such vehicles sold in 2016, which consisted of 21 percent of all vehicles sold. Also increasing were the number of luxury cars sold, with more than double the models of nameplates like Porsche and Maserati sold in 2017 than the year before. According to industry experts, car sales will jump in the first two months of 2018, with as many as 60,000 cars to be delivered during those months.

Hyundai was the best-selling car in Israel in 2017, with 36,731 vehicles sold, 6 percent fewer than in 2016. In second place was Kia, with 35,663 vehicles sold, a fall of 6.3 percent. In third place was Toyota, with 31,103 vehicles sold, 3.5 percent more than in 2016. That was followed by Skoda, with 21,742 vehicles sold, 11 percent more than in 2017. Fifth place belonged to Suzuki, with 16,619 vehicles, 24 percent more than a year earlier. Nissan topped off the list of the six most popular vehicles in Israel, with 14,342 vehicles sold, an increase of 23 percent.

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