Car sales in India fell for the first time in a decade – down 6.69 per cent in 2012-13 as the automobile industry struggled to cope with demand slump due to a sluggish economy.
According to the data released by Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM),passenger car sales in the last fiscal stood at 18,95,471 units,compared to 20,31,306 units in the previous fiscal. This is the first annual decline since 2002-03,when car sales had dropped 2.09 per cent.
The decline in passenger car sales last fiscal was also the steepest in the past 12 years when the segment declined by 7.73 per cent in 2000-01.
“The overall economic growth was not so encouraging in last fiscal. Higher cost of ownership impacted car sales. Also negative sentiments,particularly among lower-end customers,have resulted in fall of sales,” SIAM President S Sandilya told reporters here.
High interest rates,which ranged around 11-15 per cent,and high fuel prices,mainly that of petrol,also impacted car sales during the last fiscal,he added.
In 2012-13,market leader Maruti Suzuki’s sales went up marginally to 8,61,337 units,while rival Hyundai Motor’s saw a fall of 1.12 per cent at 3,82,851 units. Tata Motors’ car sales dipped by 32.28 per cent to 1,74,692 units,SIAM said.
The two-wheeler segment witnessed a rise of 2.90 per cent to 1,37,97,748 units in FY’13 from 1,34,09,150 units in FY’12.
“The scooter segment is contributing robust numbers to the two-wheeler sales,but the motorcycle sales stagnated in last fiscal year,” Sandilya said.
In the motorcycle segment,total sales rose marginally to 1,00,85,586 units from 1,00,73,303 units in previous fiscal.
Sales of market leader Hero MotoCorp dipped 4.72 per cent to 53,62,730 units. Rival,Bajaj Auto’s sales went down by 4.01 per cent to 24,63,863 units,while Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) saw a growth of 53.78 per cent at 11,86,726 units.
In the scooters segment,SIAM said total sales increased by 14.24 per cent to 29,23,401 units in 2012-13 from 25,58,981 units in 2011-12.
HMSI posted a growth of 15.97 per cent at 14,20,115 scooters and Hero MotoCorp saw its sales going up by 32.68 per cent to 5,49,808 units in last fiscal.
On the commercial vehicles front,SIAM said the total sales in FY’13 were at 7,93,150 units,down 2.02 per cent from 8,09,499 units in FY’12.
“Mainly the medium and heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) segment was performing badly due to moderation of mining,subdued industrial activity and lower replacement of old vehicles,” Sandilya said,adding SIAM had already requested the government to take various steps to boost sales of CVs.
While the M&HCV sales went down by 23.18 per cent at 2,68,263 units,the light commercial vehicle (LCV) segment registered a jump of 14.04 per cent at 5,24,887 units.
The three-wheeler segment’s total sales increased last fiscal by 4.87 per cent to 5,38,291 units from 5,13,281 units.
The grand total of vehicle sales of all categories in India in last fiscal rose 2.61 per cent at 1,78,15,618 units,as against 1,73,61,769 units in 2011-12.
“Total vehicles sales of the country increased because of mainly LCV segment. Also the utility vehicle sales contributed to this positive growth,” Sandilya said.
On the export front,India’s overall shipment went down by 1.34 per cent to 28,98,659 units in 2012-13 from 29,37,905 units in FY’12,SIAM said.
However,exports of passenger cars increased 8.60 per cent at 5,44,656 units,the two-wheeler segment saw a marginal dip at 19,60,941 units in overseas sales.
The CV segment’s exports declined by 13.35 per cent to 79,944 units in last financial year,SIAM said.
As for March this year,domestic passenger car sales declined by 22.51 per cent to 1,80,675 units,from 2,33,151 units in the same month of 2012.
As per the SIAM data,motorcycle sales in last month fell by 8.32 per cent to 7,79,878 units,from 8,50,637 units in the same month previous year.
Total two-wheeler sales in March 2013 declined by 6.96 per cent to 11,01,058 units,from 11,83,425 units in the same month of previous year.
Sales of commercial vehicles went down by 6.04 per cent to 84,956 units from 90,416 units in the year-ago period.
Total sales of vehicles across categories registered a fall of 7.76 per cent to 14,86,522 units in March 2013,as against 16,11,525 units in the same month of 2012,SIAM said.