With increased festive demand boosting car sales, passenger vehicle sales in October brought cheer for automakers, with the highest ever growth since October 2012 for passenger cars and highest volumes for passenger vehicles since October 2013. This also marked the twelfth consecutive month of growth for the passenger car segment.
With Navratra sales in September as well as boosting measures by car and two-wheeler makers for Diwali sales, passenger vehicle sales grew 21.8% in October while two-wheeler sales went up 13.3% with a robust growth of 36.8% in the scooter segment, according to data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers for October.
Overall passenger vehicle sales during the month grew by 21.46% at 2,68,629 units as against 2,21,163 units in the year-ago month.
“The festival season has brought cheer to the auto industry as sales have risen across categories in the last month,” Siam director general Vishnu Mathur told reporters. Various segments, including passenger cars, motorcycles, scooters and commercial vehicles posted good growth during the month, he added. Also, the passenger vehicle segment is unlikely to go back to negative growth trend, he said.
Analysts too expect the sales momentum to sustain in the coming months. “There are many favourable indicators to propel growth in the automotive sector such as low interest rates, pent up demand across the segment, low fuel prices etc. The remaining part of the festival season will bring cheer to the automakers,” Abdul Majeed, partner, Price Waterhouse said.
On the double-digit growth in two-wheeler sales, Mathur said there are signs that some rural demand is catching up again. “There is still some data to come for the last month but taking into account the figures so far, this festival season is going to be much better than the corresponding one,” Mathur said. For two-wheeler market leader Hero MotoCorp, close to half of the sales come from rural markets.
On commercial vehicles, Mathur said the light commercial vehicle segment should also revive very soon.
The segment which recorded 6.83% growth in October, has witnessed subdued growth along with contraction in several months in a row.
“The growth in commercial vehicles is largely due to replacement demand and is not impacted due to festive season. Commercial vehicle sales are purely commercial buying,” Mathur said.
“We see demand for the
light commercial vehicles coming back. We expect the commercial vehicle segment to scale peak level by the first half of next year,” Mathur said.
The commercial vehicle segment had posted peak sales in March 2012, when over 90,000 units were sold by various automakers in a single month.