Maruti Suzukis robust growth, a sign of relief for ailing auto market
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At a time when India’s auto market was going through difficult times, owing to the steep hike in fuel prices and high interest rates, Maruti Suzuki’s robust growth in June 2012 came as a relief to the industry. However, the growth figure might have been exaggerated due to low sales volumes in June 2011 caused by a strike at its Manesar plant. Still, the success of new launches by the car maker has helped the company retain its market share.
The double digit growth of 20 per cent with sales of 83,531 units is mainly driven by the strong demand of models like the Swift DZire and the recently launched Ertiga. As the company started shipping the Ertiga overseas, the exports of the car maker also saw a healthy growth of 27 per cent to 13,066 units in June, 2012. The small models from the Maruti Suzuki like the Estilo, Swift and Ritz witnessed a growth of 39 per cent to 22,624 units. Meanwhile, the recently launched DZire sedan experienced a massive growth of 453 per cent to 13,741 units in June 2012. Maruti Suzuki’s bestsellers, Swift and DZire, are produced at the company’s Manesar facility, which was affected by the labour strike in June 2011.
On the other hand, the older models of the car maker became part of the slump and added to the industry’s gloom. Sales of cars like M800, A-star, Alto and WagonR reduced by 10 per cent with sales figures of 34,198 units in June 2012. On the other hand, sales of SX4 and Kizashi sports also witnessed a downfall of 43 per cent and 81 per cent, respectively, in the Indian auto market.
Besides some of the big brands of Maruti, leading models like Hyundai’s i10 and Santro, Toyota Liva and Honda Brio were also affected similarly. With 30,450 cars sold in the country, Hyundai Motor India did not witness any turbulence in June 2012. However in the past couple of months, the South Korean auto giant continues to face a tough time with its small petrol cars which witnessed a fall in their sales.
Hyundai's Director (Marketing and Sales), Arvind Saxena, said. “The general inflationary trend, high fuel prices, and interest rates that are still high are keeping sentiment low. Unless any triggers get activated, sentiment is not expected to improve very much in the near future.”
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