Indonesia's vehicle sales in the past yearsA staggering 1.2 million vehicles were sold in Indonesia in 2013. In 2015, this figure dropped to around one million. This was largely due to a difficult economic environment, in which the per capita GDP fell to 3,369 U.S. dollars and the value of exported goods came to only 150.4 billion U.S. dollars. Since then, and even though Indonesia was able to increase their per capita GDP, the number of vehicles sold stabilized and reached about one million every year up to 2019. However, in 2020, the COVID-19 crisis also hit the industry and Indonesia's commercial vehicle sales decreased for about more than one hundred thousand units in that year.
Japanese brands are still dominating automotive industry in IndonesiaThe Indonesian automobile market was dominated by Japanese car brands, and most of these brands, such as Toyota, Isuzu and Daihatsu, were solely distributed and/or imported by PT. Astra International Tbk. Toyota was the leading passenger vehicle brand in Indonesia with car sales of 182.6 thousand units in 2020. There was only one non-Japanese car brand among the best-selling car manufacturers in Indonesia. The Chinese manufacturer Wuling launched their first car in early 2017 and made it in the top ten brands of cars sold with about 9.5 thousand vehicles sold in 2020. German brands were the pick of the crop in the luxury segment. Top models are shipped as finished automobiles (CBU - Completely Built Up), while other models are assembled on site. However, the market for them was small: BMW sold around 2,000 units, Volkswagen 480 units, and Audi 50 units in 2020.
The free trade agreement with neighboring Australia concluded in spring 2019 offers new opportunities for the automotive industry in Indonesia. The last local car manufacturer stopped its production in 2017 due to high prices for labor intensive industries. The country is now completely dependent on imports. With the free trade agreement, car manufacturers which have already settled in Indonesia can count on import tax reliefs in Australia.