The Indian automobile industry continues to go through a dry patch this year in April, as domestic passenger car sales went down by 10.43 per cent to 1,50,789 units last month. In the same month last year, some 1,68,354 units were sold. Even the sales recorded two-wheelers have been affected by the ongoing economic slump, as motorcycle sales also declined by 2.06 per cent. The domestic two-wheeler segment saw 8,43,889 units being delivered in April 2013, as compared to 8,61,608 units during April 2012, as per data given by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).
However, it is good to see that a positive trend is visible with respect to the overall sales of two-wheelers. Total sales of two-wheelers for the above mentioned period this year grew by 0.95 per cent to 11,68,080 units, as against 11,57,114 units sold in April 2012. Total sales of commercial vehicles also rose by 0.75 per cent to 56,678 units, up from 56,257 units in the year-ago period, as per data from SIAM. For the complete Indian automobile industry, total vehicle sales across different categories registered a fall of 0.34 per cent to 14,67,492 units in April 2013, in comparison to 14,72,452 units during the year ago period.
Segments of passenger vehicles that have really done well in month of April over the last year and continue to do well are compact Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) and compact sedans. The Renault Duster, a leader in the compact SUV space, sold a whopping 6,315 units in April 2013. Similarly, 19,446 units of the Maruti Swift DZire sedan were sold, up by 25.38 per cent as compared to April of last year. Vehicles in the mini segment for Maruti Suzuki, that comprises of the Alto, Maruti 800, A-Star and WagonR also grew by 13.69 per cent to sell 34,927 units this April, in comparison to 30,720 units delivered during April last year.
Car makers in India have tried several strategies to increase sales and continue to do so. Measures such as high discounts, providing free accessories and coming up with special editions have all been one, but it has not resulted in substantial results. The entire auto industry is hoping for the Union Government to provide a stimulus so as to bring it out of the current situation.