November 10, 2017

Assisted-Mobility Vehicle Sales in Japan in the First Half of Fiscal 2017

Sales of assisted-mobility vehicles in Japan during the first half of fiscal 2017 (April through September) totalled 21,709 units, up 6.7% from the same period in 2016 and marking the first increase in a fiscal first half-year in three years. This rise is attributable to the introduction of new models and Japan’s increasingly graying society

April-September 2017 Sales Data by Vehicle Category

1. Standard & Small Vehicles—11,312 units (up 2.2% from first half of fiscal 2016)
This vehicle category saw a small increase in demand compared with the April-September period in the previous year, owing primarily to the introduction of new models. Sales of wheelchair-accessible models increased 11.5%, exceeding the 7,000-unit level for the first time ever.

2. Mini-Vehicles—7,303 units (up 10.1% from first half of fiscal 2016)
Sales in this vehicle category rose from the same period in the previous year, reflecting the fact that demand for assisted-mobility mini-vehicles had stalled in anticipation of the introduction of new models and then surged once new models became available.

3. Buses—3,094 units (up 16.8% from first half of fiscal 2016)
There is a growing trend in Japan to adopt universal design in public services. As a result, cities are increasingly introducing low-floor (or “non-step” as they are called in Japanese) buses in their bus fleets, which is the main reason for the steady rise in demand in this vehicle category since fiscal 2014.

1.  The figures provided here and in the accompanying charts are the aggregate totals of JAMA member manufacturers’ unit sales; they do not include vehicles customized post-purchase.  (For example, although in the accompanying “Summary” chart the total first-half fiscal 2016 unit sales figure for vehicles equipped with drive-assist systems—including standard, small, and mini-size vehicles—is 169, annual demand for vehicles so equipped stands in fact at around 5,000 units when vehicles customized post-purchase are included in the calculation.)
2.  The three categories of assisted-mobility vehicles listed here have been established by JAMA on the basis of equipment standards, and therefore differ from the vehicle categories established under Japan’s Road Vehicles Act.  The main differences are that “Standard & Small Vehicles” includes standard and small passenger cars and van-type commercial vehicles, and that “Buses” includes minibuses.
3.  Sales of models equipped with elevator or revolving seats were listed in a single segment through fiscal 2014, but have been listed in separate segments since fiscal 2015.
4.  Since fiscal 2016:
    - “Other” in the “Standard & Small Vehicles” category refers to vehicles equipped to transport multiple passengers in wheelchairs, whereas the “wheelchair-accessible” designation here and in the accompanying “Summary” chart refers to vehicles equipped to transport only one passenger in a wheelchair.
    - The “Other” segment in the “Mini-Vehicles” category has been eliminated.


[Data charts attached (PDF)]