Price cuts push Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai sales higher in Feb

Written by Press Trust of India | New Delhi | Updated: Mar 4 2014, 16:36pm hrs
Maruti SuzukiMaruti Suzuki India and Hyundai Motor India recovered some ground in February as buyers. Reuters
Leading car makers Maruti Suzuki India and Hyundai Motor India recovered some ground in February as buyers made their way to the showrooms, encouraged by the recent price cuts following the lowering of excise duty in the Interim Budget.

Similarly, Ford India and Honda Cars India posted double digit growth during the month.

On the other hand, others including Tata Motors, Toyota Kirlosakar Motor and Mahindra & Mahindra witnessed sales decline during the month.

Two wheeler makers Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) and TVS Motor Company posted growth last month.

The country's largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India, said its domestic sales rose 1.8 per cent during the month to 99,758 units as against 97,955 units in February, 2013.

Sales of mini segment cars -- M800, Alto, A-Star and WagonR -- declined by 9.6 per cent to 37,342 units as compared to 41,311 units in the year-ago month.

The company said sales of the compact segment comprising Swift, Estilo and Ritz increased by 19.4 per cent to 28,672 units in February.

Sales of utility vehicles -- Gypsy, Grand Vitara and Ertiga -- stood at 5,231 units in February this year, down 12.2 per cent thus affecting the company's performance.

In January, the company's domestic sales had declined by 6.3 per cent to 96,569 units.

Hyundai Motor India Ltd's (HMIL) domestic sales were little changed at 34,005 units from 34,002 units in February 2013.

"Post the reduction in excise duty, inquiry inflow has increased with February sales of 34,005 units a growth of 2 per cent over the earlier month and it is expected that this would lead towards creation of a positive momentum," HMIL Senior VP-Sales and Marketing Rakesh Srivastava said.

The company had reported a 2.6 per cent slide in domestic sales at 33,405 units during January, 2014.

Meanwhile, Honda Cars India reported over two-fold increase in domestic sales at 14,543 units in February.

"We are happy to see the huge demand for the all new Honda City which has gained the leadership position in its segment from the first month itself," HCIL Senior Vice-President (Marketing and Sales) Jnaneswar Sen said.

The company sold 7,213 units of its premium sedan City during the month.

Similarly, Ford India's domestic sales were up 51.42 per cent to 6,799 units in February as against 4,490 units in the same month previous year.

"...The recent reductions in excise duty should provide a positive message to customers and encourage them to make the most of the outstanding value being offered on our smart, safe and fuel efficient products," Ford India Executive Director (Marketing, Sales and Service) Vinay Piparsania said.

On the other hand Tata Motors saw its total domestic vehicle sales decline 35.56 per cent to 39,951 units in February.

Mahindra & Mahindra's domestic sales stood at 39,338 units last month, as against 44,399 in the same month previous year, down 11.39 per cent year-on-year.

"The auto industry has received the much needed boost in terms of an excise duty reduction and this has resulted in higher inquiries over the last one week," M&M Chief Executive (Automotive Division) Pravin Shah said.

The recently concluded Auto Expo has also been a success which will only help in generating demand, he added.

"At Mahindra we are hopeful that these positive initiatives would be the beginning of a gradual upswing for the auto industry, as we move into the next financial year," Shah said.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) reported 20.82 per cent fall in its domestic sales at 10,100 units in February,2014.

"The excise duty cut is a welcome step taken by the government to revive sale. However, other factors like high interest rates, falling value of rupee and unstable fuel pricing still loom large on the market," TKM Senior Vice- President (Sales and Marketing) N Raja said.

Two wheeler maker HMSI's domestic sales grew by 44 per cent at 3,28,521 units for February, 2014. TVS Motor Company's total sales grew by 7 per cent in February to 1,77,662 units.

In the interim Budget 2014-15, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram had announced reduction of excise duty on small cars, scooters, motorcycles and commercial vehicles to 8 per cent from 12 per cent earlier; 24 per cent from 30 per cent on SUVs; 24 per cent from 27 per cent on large cars and 20 per cent from 24 per cent in mid sized cars.