Sales of medium and heavy commercial vehicles (MHCVs) increased by a strong 36 per cent to 21,363 units last month indicating a revival in economic activity.
While the numbers are still a far cry from absolute sales of 40,402 units recorded in March 2011, the growing volumes hint at improving market sentiments.
Vishnu Mathur, director general, Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) said, “Sales of MHCVs have not breached the peak of 40,402 units recorded in March 2011. But month-on-month sales have shown strong growth. This segment has been declining for almost three years and now demand is back to meet requirement of long-distance freight movement. Fleet owners are replacing older vehicles.”
Though sales of light commercial vehicles (LCVs) continue to veer in the negative territory, this decline too is moderating. “Movement has started picking up between hubs as a result of which MHCV sales are up. Demand for LCVs required for providing last mile connectivity too will turnaround shortly,” added Mathur.
The positive indicators in the commercial vehicle segment, however, are not having a rub-off effect across categories.
Sales of two-wheelers rose by a marginal 1.07 per cent to 13,27,957 units in January. While demand for scooters continued to be strong growing by 25.30 per cent to 4,04,919 units, that for motorcycles dropped by 5.85 per cent to 8,68,507 units.
Mathur added, “In urban centres, demand for motorcycles is being replaced by scooters… irregularities in dole-outs under MNREGA scheme, lower rainfall is impacting sales of motorcycles in rural areas.”