Buyers return to petrol cars in slow festive season
The popularity of low-priced petrol car models that were launched this festive season has brought petrol cars back on the Indian buyers' shopping list after over a year. Another push toward petrol variants has come with a hike in diesel prices, and an anticipation of more such hikes in the future.
The biggest credit goes to the new version of the top-selling car in the market, Maruti Suzuki's Alto 800, which seems to have almost single-handedly raised the demand for petrol cars from a deep slump. Bookings since its launch on October 16 have crossed 43,000, apart from retail sales of 26,000 units.
“Apart from the Alto, the Wagon R is also being picked up by dealers more this time, indicating a growth in petrol car demand after the recent rise in diesel prices. Diesel cars are still popular, but we're possibly seeing a moderation or plateau in demand for them. A trend will be clearer by November-end,” a senior Maruti official told FE. With a 40% share (April to October, 2012) of the A2 minus segment, a dip or increase in Alto sales can move the market.
Second-largest domestic car maker Hyundai also said all its petrol models, including the Eon, i10 and Santro, seem to be back in vogue. “We are seeing a growth in volumes this festive season. The growth is led by diesel variants with a resurgence now visible in petrol variants too. We hope this
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