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Rich Kenyans spending hundreds of millions on luxury cars

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Rich in Kenya: Hakuna pesa! This is the cry of the majority of Kenyans. The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the financial troubles of the majority of Kenyans. But not for the super rich. A new report shows that the rich in Kenya have defied economic turmoil brought by coronavirus by increasing orders for luxury brand new vehicles.

Orders for cars such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW have grown by 14.5 percent in the six months to June. Data from the Kenya Motor Vehicle Industry Association (KMI) shows that Mercedes and BMW drove the rise in orders for high-end cars to 79 units in the review period compared to 69 units a year earlier.

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“The performance shows that rich households and some private companies increased their spending at a time when most businesses and workers suffered major income declines from the measures imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus,” a related report that appeared in the Business Daily on Wednesday said.

The report further says that orders for Mercedes cars were the strongest in the six-month period, rising to 37 from 24 while those for BMW models rose to 14 from three. However, Land Rover sales, including Range Rovers, dropped to 18 from 22 while orders for Bentleys fell to one from three. Porsche sales also declined to nine from 10.

“The trend demonstrates that high-net-worth individuals and profitable companies have significant cash buffers and can maintain or raise their spending amid economic turmoil. While the luxury car segment thrived, the rest of the market, including the mainstay commercial vehicles, declined in response to the fall in economic activity,” the report said.

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