Fuel price hike will impact demand going forward
Top car makers Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai and Honda have begun the new fiscal on a high note by posting robust sales in April, riding mainly on new models. However, Mahindra & Mahindra could manage just 1 per cent increase in sales and General Motors India saw its sales decline during the month.
Maruti Suzuki India said its domestic sales increased by 27.3 per cent during the month to 100,709 units against 79,119 units in April 2014.
Sales of mini segment cars, including, Alto and WagonR, rose 35.9 per cent to 35,403 units compared with 26,043 units in the year-ago month, while the compact segment sales comprising Swift, Estilo, Ritz, Dzire rose by 8.7 per cent to 42,297 units in April this year as compared to the same period of the previous fiscal.
Rival Hyundai Motor India Ltd (HMIL) sold 38,601 units last month as compared with 35,248 units in April 2014, up 9.5 per cent.
Commenting on sales, HMIL senior vice-president (sales and marketing) Rakesh Srivastava said the growth during the month was achieved "on the strength of strong and young product portfolio led by 12,425 units of Elite i20 and i20 Active in a challenging market conditions especially in the rural market."
Honda Cars India had a good run in April, registering 14 per cent jump in its domestic sales at 12,636 units during the month as compared to 11,040 units in April last year.
Utility vehicle major Mahindra & Mahindra saw its domestic sales rise by 1 per cent to 34,467 units last month as against 34,107 units in April last year.
"The auto industry is hopeful of a better financial year as we see positive sentiments on the back of various policy and project announcements leading to higher levels of economic activity," M&M chief executive (automotive division) Pravin Shah said.
He added the firm expects to perform better given the positive sentiments and the upcoming launches of new products.
General Motors India reported 31.87 per cent decline in sales at 3,612 units in April 2015 as against 5,302 units in the same month last year.
Commenting on the performance, General Motors India vice president P Balendran said, "The overall customer sentiment has not picked up as expected and the rural markets are also facing challenging times. The fuel price hike from last night is also expected to impact demand going forward."
"The company expects interest rates to be reduced in phases and some of the reform-oriented announcements made by the government to be implemented in a timely manner to aid economic recovery," he added.
In the two-wheeler segment, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) reported an 8.56 per cent increase in total sales at 3,40,791 units in April.
Niche bike maker Royal Enfield's domestic sales were at 33,118 units during the month as against 23,180 units in April last year, up 43 per cent.