Amid slowdown, new models salvage car sales

Written by Mihir Mishra | New Delhi | Updated: May 18 2014, 06:18am hrs
CarsThe Xcent clocked 1716 units last fiscal as the car was launched on March 12, 2014.
Had it not been for the dozen-odd new model launches during FY14, the 6 per cent dip in passenger vehicle sales seen during the year the first such decline in over a decade would have widened to a sharper 17 per cent drop in sales.

Around 12 key new models, launched by companies in the last fiscal, helped arrest the drop in volumes. The launches, which included the Maruti Suzuki Celerio, the new Honda City and the Ford EcoSport, cumulatively accounted for sales to the tune of 2,81,258 units, or around 11 per cent of passenger vehicle sales registered last fiscal.

There were couple of other launches in the premium segment, but those did not contribute in volume terms.

The Honda Amaze, which was launched in April 2013, chipped in with the largest numbers in terms of gross sales at 77,711 units.

The introduction of the Amaze and subsequently the new City with diesel options turned around the fortunes of the company in the Indian market.

Nearly 76 per cent of volumes for the company in the last fiscal came from the newly-launched City and entry-level sub-4 metre sedan Amaze.

Ford India, which sold 45,008 units of Ecosport, since its launch on June 26, 2013 contributed to sales numbers. The EcoSport, which contributed as much as 53 per cent to the companys sales in the domestic market last year, helped the company clock a 9.38 per cent increase in sales volumes to 84,469 units in FY14.

Hyundai Motors sales remained almost flat at 3,80,253 units last fiscal, even as the market registered a decline. The company made slow but steady in-roads in the passenger vehicle industry on back of sub-4 metre sedan Xcent and hatchback Grand i10.

The Xcent clocked 1716 units last fiscal as the car was launched on March 12, 2014. On the other hand, the Grand i10 quickly made it in the list of top 10 vehicles in the domestic market clocking average monthly sales of around 10,400 units in FY14.

High interest rates, rising fuel prices and uncertain economic conditions sharply impacted sales of passenger vehicles in the domestic market.

Sales declined for the first time in 12 years recording a drop of 6.05 per cent to 25,03,685 units last financial year despite the cuts in excise duty announced by the government in the interim budget. Sales in the passenger vehicle segment had previously declined by 5.87 per cent in 2000-01.