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Corporate Dec 1, 2012

Auto sales: Festive season a mixed bag for the industry

New Delhi: The festive season this year has turned out to be a mixed bag for the automobile industry, with Maruti Suzuki and Mahindra & Mahindra posting good growth, while Hyundai Motor and Tata Motors witnessing their domestic sales declining in November.

In the two-wheeler segment, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter, India Yamaha and Suzuki Motorcycle witnessed a jump in their sales, while market leader Hero MotoCorp and TVS Motor's despatches went down last month.

Reuters

In November, the country's largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India recorded domestic sales of 90,882 units compared to 82,870 units in the year-ago period, registering a rise of 9.67 percent.

However, rival Hyundai Motor India's sales in domestic market declined marginally at 34,751 units compared to 35,000 units in the year-ago period.

"The adverse market conditions due to high interest rates and inflation continued to pose challenges for growth. Increased diesel fuel price temporarily affected the strong momentum of diesel car sales," HMIL Vice President (Marketing and Sales) Rakesh Srivastava said.

Auto major Mahindra & Mahindra's passenger vehicles segment (which includes the UVs and Verito) registered an increase of 38.12 per cent at 24,604 units against 17,813 units in the year-ago month.

Commenting on the numbers, Mahindra & Mahindra Chief Executive (Automotive Division) Pravin Shah said: "We are happy to maintain our growth trend on the back of our portfolio of products especially the Quanto, which has crossed more than 12,000 bookings in just over two months."

However, rival homegrown auto major Tata Motors' total passenger vehicle sales in the domestic market stood at 18,031 units in November, down 34.99 percent from 27,735 units in the same month last year.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) reported a 25.82 per cent decline in sales at 10,352 units during November 2012. It had sold 13,956 units in the same month last year.

"The sales have dropped this month due to a plant shut down, to ramp up the annual production capacity from 2,10,000 units to 3,10,00 units for the next calendar year," TKM Deputy Managing Director (Marketing) Sandeep Singh said.

Car maker Ford India's domestic sales declined by 28.57 percent to 5,944 units in November this year as against 8,322 units in the same month last year.

Commenting on the sales performance, Ford India Executive Director (Marketing, Sales and Service) Vinay Piparsania said: "Despite ongoing market challenges, we are very pleased to see customer sentiments improving and their confidence in the Ford brand continuing to grow."

Honda Cars India posted 87.24 per cent increase in its total sales for November at 3,711 units compared to 1,982 units in the same month last year.

In the two-wheeler category, the country's largest two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp reported sales of 5,02,305 units in November, registering a decline of 6.42 per cent over 5,36,772 units sold in the year-ago period.

"This year, the November despatch is lower than last year on account of the holidays due to Diwali, while there were no such holidays in the November of 2011, the festive period being in October last year," the company said.

Chennai-based TVS Motor Company's domestic sales registered a marginal decline to 1,50,056 units as against 1,50,406 units in November 2011.

Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India reported 12.24 per cent growth in its total sales for November at 2,23,116 units. Its sales stood at 1,98,782 units in the corresponding month of the previous year.

Two-wheeler maker India Yamaha Motor's domestic sales during the month grew by 32.54 per cent at 37,347 units compared to 28,178 units in the same month last year.

"The festive season did play a role in changing the market sentiment, however, due to the current economic conditions and rise in inflation, the festival season has been weak compared to last year," India Yamaha Motor National Business Head Roy Kurian said.

Suzuki Motorcycle India witnessed 24.90 per cent increase in sales at 39,134 units as against 31,332 units in the same month last year.

"We have received a good response from the market for all our products. The festive campaign, Hai Hayate, Hai Happiness, has further consolidated our consumer connect and created more opportunities for celebrations this festive season," Suzuki Motorcycle India Vice-President (Sales and Marketing) Atul Gupta said.

PTI


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