May auto sales skid on high interest rates,rising fuel prices

High interest rates and hike in petrol prices dampened the sales of passenger vehicles of auto majors like Maruti,General Motors and Ford in May,further tempering down the growth of the auto sector for second month in a row

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Published: June 2, 2012 1:01 am

High interest rates and hike in petrol prices dampened the sales of passenger vehicles of auto majors like Maruti,General Motors and Ford in May,further tempering down the growth of the auto sector for second month in a row. The car sales had registered a spurt of 20 per cent in March.

Absence of any diesel variants in its bread and butter segment of mini car segment cost the country’s largest car-maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd (MSIL) a 4.32 per cent decline in its overall domestic sales which stood at 89,478 units,compared to 93,519 units a year ago. Ford and General

Motors,also posted a 14 per cent and 27 per cent dip in sales at 6,036 units and 6,079 units respectively over same period,last year.

For Maruti,even a 14.66 per cent rise to — 24,290 units from 21,185 units in its compact segment (comprising the Estilo,Swift and Ritz models) — wasn’t sufficient to reverse the fall caused by decline in sales across all other segments including export.

Sales of Maruti’s mini car segment which includes Alto,A-Star and Wagon R,Maruti 800,tumbled 29.03 per cent to 29,895 units from 42,125 units in May last year.

Hyundai Motors India saw sluggish growth as it posted a modest growth of 2.8 per cent in May.

Hyundai sold 32,010 units in the month as against 31,123 units in May last year. The company’s exports however grew at an impressive 42.2 per cent growth ,recording sales of 23,660 vehicles as compared to 16,639 last year.

However,Tata Motors,the country’s third largest car-maker saw a 6 per cent growth in its sales figures .

Nano sold 8,507 units,a jump of 31 per cent,compared to 6,515 units. But the Indica range of cars sales declined by 1 per cent (5,467 units compared to 5,497 units in May 2011).

Riding on the demand wave for diesel vehicles,sports utility major Mahindra & Mahindra witnessed a 24 per cent jump in sales for May (sold 39,938 units against 32,159 units in May 2011). Toyota Kirloskar also saw sales doubling on the back of strong fleet/taxi sales of the Innova and Etios range.

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