Kenya 2023. Light Vehicle Market Moderately Negative (-4.5%)


Kenyan Vehicles Sales have been shy in 2023. During the year light vehicles registered were 12,751 units (-4.5%), losing again as in the previous year. Chinese OEMs are gaining space and Chery is their leader.

Market Trend and Outlook

Kenya’s vehicle market in 2023 continues losing momentum being down 14.5% from the previous year, reaching 12,751 sales. Despite December being up a whopping 48.1%, while totalling 936 new sales.

Looking at cumulative data up to December 2023 brand-wise, this year’s leader is still Isuzu with 46.8% market share and a 6.0% decrease in sales, followed by Toyota with 28.4% market share and a 13.3% loss in volume. Ford -up 3 spots- becomes the 3rd best selling brand in Kenya.

Medium-Term Market Trend

Following a quite positive period, which ended with the all-time record hit in 2015 with 19,515 vehicles (including HCVs & Bus) sold, the Kenyan vehicles market was hit by the economic crisis and started falling down, losing in two years over 40% of volume, with 2017  total vehicle sales (including HCVs) reaching just 11,031 (-18.2%).

In 2018 the mood changed and the market recovered. Sustained by private consumption the market scored a recovery above any expectations. Indeed, according to data released by the Kenyan Motor Industry Association, the market grew, gaining 28.0% from 2017, with registrations at 14,124.

In 2019 despite a very good start, with Q1 up in double-digits, the market progressively lost steam ending Q4 with a sharp decline. Full-year sales reached 21,877, up 54.9%.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic sales significantly decreased in  2020. In fact, sales totaled 14,626, a 33.1% fall compared to 2019.

The market gained back some momentum in 2021, rising 36.9% to 20,028 new yearly sales. While 2022 interrupted this brief uptrend, falling 2.0% to 15,941 sales.