New car sales in Japan surge 46.7 percent in August

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Indy Lifestyle Online

New vehicle sales in Japan jumped 46.7 percent in August year-on-year, an auto industry group said Wednesday, as buyers rushed to make the most of soon-to-expire subsidies for green cars.

In the 13th straight monthly rise, new registrations for vehicles including cars, trucks and buses but excluding minicars totalled 290,789 in August, the Japanese Automobile Dealers Association said.

The month saw new registrations of passenger cars rise 49 percent on-year to 267,777 units, while those of trucks gained 23 percent to 21,740.

The recent strong performance of the domestic car market has been driven by subsidies and tax breaks to revive a sector battered by the financial crisis, but these will expire at the end of September, prompting fears of a slowdown in the second half.

Toyota, the world's largest automaker, sold 130,092 vehicles excluding Lexus-brand models, seeing sales rise 43.3 percent despite the ongoing effects of a recall crisis involving more than 10 million vehicles worldwide.

Honda, Japan's second-largest carmaker, boosted sales 61.3 percent to 50,195. Deliveries at Nissan Motor, the third-largest, gained 44.6 percent to 44,857.

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