Weak consumer sentiment stagnate car sales further

Tuesday 27 December 2011, 10:11 AM by

2011 has been a roller coaster ride for the car industry with the sales of vehicles declining due to rising inflation, high interest rates and increasing fuel prices. During the period of January-November 2011, the domestic car sales witnessed a meagre 4 per cent growth to achieve a 1,786,391 units figure, as against the previous 1,719,703 units. Even a host of new launches and promotional discounts failed to uplift the sales of domestic cars in the country. On the contrary, exports during the same time grew by 18 per cent at 457,004 units.

P. Balendran, Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, General Motors mentioned that 2011 has been a stringent test for the car manufactures. Shashank Srivastava, Chief General Manager, Marketing, Maruti Suzuki India, said, “While the January-March 2011 period saw euphoric volumes, subsequent months have been much below the expectations. The industry will probably show a small single digit growth for the calendar year ending with volumes of around 2.55 million.”

The country’s biggest car maker, Maruti Suzuki, was severely affected by labour unrest this year. Subrata Ray, Senior Vice-President, Corporate Ratings, Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) said, “While the segment saw several new car launches during the period including the Auto Expo is expected to change the current picture drastically.

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