Most Indian auto makers led by market leader Maruti Suzuki India Ltd today reported a continued rise in monthly sales for February, driven mainly by discounts, as four-wheeler and two-wheeler companies announced their February sales numbers.
Four-wheeler giant Maruti Suzuki's February sales were up at 79,190 units as against 63,822 units on a year-on-year basis. This represents the sharpest rise in percentage terms in the fiscal year. February was the third consecutive month of rising sales for Maruti, India's largest carmaker by sales. Sales last fell 18 per cent in November from October's 64,490 units.
Maruti, a unit of Suzuki Motor Corp, also said sales and exports in February were the highest for a month since the company began operations in December 1983. The company exported 8,565 cars, mainly comprising the new A-Star small car model.
Maruti Suzuki chairman R C Bhargava said the worst seems to be over and that the next fiscal will be positive. He, however, added that growth might be in the low single digits, rather than the 10–12 per cent growth might not happen.
Two-wheeler major Hero Honda's February sales were up 24 per cent to 3.29 lakh units versus 2.65 lakh units last year. TVS Motor reported that February sales were up 13 per cent at 107,301 units versus 95,235 units last year, up 14 per cent on a month-on-month basis. Its exports were up 32.4 per cent.
"Our new launches have been driving strong volumes across geographies, further consolidating our more than 56 per cent in the domestic motorcycle market," Anil Dua, senior vice-president for marketing and sales at Hero Honda Motors said in a statement on Sunday.
Total car sales at the Indian unit of Hyundai Motor India Ltd in February rose to 38,254 units from 29,001 units a year earlier, the company said. Local sales were 21,215 units, while exports were 17,039 units, it said.
Bajaj Auto was the only major whose sales went down in February – by 16 per cent at 1.54 lakh units against 1.84 lakh units on a year-on-year basis. Its exports too were down 20 per cent to 50,738 units against 63,182 units. Motorcycle sales were down by 17 per cent at 1.32 lakh units versus 1.59 lakh units.
TVS Motor Co said it sold a total 107,301 two-wheelers in February, up 12.7 per cent from 95,235 a year earlier. Motorcycle sales at the Chennai-based company were 49,659 units in February, versus 46,565 a year earlier.
Analysts said if the sales of cars and motorcycles continue to rise beyond March it may indicate a recovery in Asia's third-biggest automobile market, which has been battered by five-year high loan rates and a slowing economy.
Car makers, vehicle insurance companies and banks are luring buyers with heavy discounts and other marketing promotions.