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Photo: Mint
Photo: Mint

PV dispatches maintain growth momentum as demand sustains

  • Industry sales grew 11% in Nov to 268,111 units from 240,785 a year earlier, aided by festive season bump
  • Hyundai posted record domestic sales for Nov at 48,800 units, a 9.4% rise from year earlier

Passenger vehicle sales in India continued its growth momentum for the fourth straight month in November spurred by festival demand even as market leader Maruti Suzuki India Ltd saw a decline.

Wholesales or factory dispatches, reported by the eight leading carmakers including Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai Motor India Ltd and Tata Motors Ltd showed industry sales grew 11% last month to 268,111 vehicles from 240,785 vehicles a year earlier. This followed increases of 14% in August, 26% in September and 14% in October, according to data compiled by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (Siam).

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Maruti Suzuki recorded a 2% decline from the year earlier to 135,775 units in November. Sales of the company’s entry-level and compact cars fell 5% to 98,969 vehicles during the month.

Analysts have, however, attributed Maruti’s weak performance to inventory correction during the month. Sales of Maruti’s utility vehicle models such as Vitara Brezza and Ertiga rose 2.4% to 23,753 units.

Hyundai posted record domestic sales for November at 48,800 units, a 9.4% rise from the year earlier. Hyundai’s Creta and Venue sport utility vehicle (SUV) models continued to drive sales fetching a combined more than 21,000 units in November while it sold nearly 9,100 units of the new version of the i20 hatchback.

Puneet Gupta, associate director, IHS Markit said fears of contracting infection is clearly working in favour of the auto industry as people are increasingly looking for personal mobility in addition to new launches.

“It is encouraging to see that demand is holding up despite discounts on cars remaining low. However, the sharp spike in growth seen in the previous months is now stabilizing as some carmakers look at post festive inventory correction," Gupta said.

Tata Motors’ sales in November more than doubled to 21,641 units from 10,400 units a year earlier.

Riding on the demand for its compact SUV Sonet, Kia Motors India sold 21,022 units in November, a 50% increase from the year earlier. The company said it sold 11,417 Sonet SUVs last month.

Kookhyun Shim, managing director and chief executive officer, Kia Motors India said consumer sentiment has improved significantly even as uncertainty around the pandemic persists.

“Not only urban, but customers from tier II, III, and smaller markets too are acknowledging the need for personal mobility," he said.

Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd (M&M) recorded a 24% growth in passenger vehicle sales at 18,212 units in November amid demand for SUV models such as Scorpio, Bolero, XUV500 and the newly-launched Thar. M&M’s utility vehicle sales jumped 27% last month to 17,971 units.

Veejay Nakra, CEO, automotive division, M&M said November sales were aided by robust festive demand.

“Given strong rural growth and signs of improvement in economic activities, we are hopeful to see this positive momentum continue post the festive season," said Nakra.

Honda Cars India clocked domestic sales of 9,990 units last month, up 55% from the year earlier. Rajesh Goel, the company’s senior vice president and director, marketing and sales said increased preference for personal mobility amid covid-19 is expected to help in sustaining the sale momentum during the rest of the fiscal despite uncertainties around the pandemic.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor sold 8,508 units in November as against 8,312 units sold a year-ago.

Naveen Soni, senior vice president, sales and service at TKM said the company has been witnessing a steady recovery owing to factors such as pent-up and festive demand.

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