The Indian auto industry has witnessed a massive fall in its February 2013 sales as against the corresponding period of last year, wherein auto makers registered their highest sales for that fiscal. The country’s largest auto makers, Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) and Hyundai India reported their second consecutive monthly sales fall during the month.
Expressing his views on this, the Vice-President (Sales and Marketing) of Hyundai India, Rakesh Srivastava was quoted as saying, “The market was depressed. There was a drop in enquiries with lower rate of conversions to purchase. The increase in fuel prices negatively impacted the already low market sentiments. We expect the challenge to continue in the next quarter following these moves in the Budget.”
On the other hand, Mahindra & Mahindra and Renault India witnessed good times, banking on the sales of their Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) in February. However, industry experts believe that with the increase in excise duty on SUVs from 27 per cent to 30 per cent in the 2013 Union Budget, the demand for them will also witness a dip. Reportedly, Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai India and Tata Motors comprise around 80 per cent of the sales in Indian passenger car market and, these auto makers are the worst affected during February 2013.
During the month, MSIL delivered 97,955 units with a fall of 9 per cent against 1,07,653 units sold in same tenure of last year. The demand for hatchbacks like Maruti 800, A-Star, Alto and WagonR dipped by 15.87 per cent with figures standing at 41,311 units as over 49,104 units delivered in February last year. India’s third largest auto maker, Tata Motors also witnessed its worst decline in the current fiscal. The auto maker reported the sales of just 10,613 units with a fall of around 70 per cent during February 2013. The demand for Nano, Indica and Indigo family stood at 7,769 units, whereas Sumo, Safari, Aria and Venture range accounted for just 2,844 units.
Reportedly, Toyota India also reported a decline of 23 per cent during the month, with sales standing at 12,756 units in the domestic market. Speaking on the same, the Deputy Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer (Marketing and Commercial) of the company, Sandeep Singh said, “The market continues to remain sluggish and with the additional excise duty levied on sports utility vehicles and utility vehicles, the market will be further impacted.”