Tepid sales, labour violence mark a rough year for auto sector
However, due to limited space at Pragati Maidan, over 100 exhibitors from across the globe were denied participation. Later in the year, the organisers decided to shift the show to Greater Noida from the next Auto Expo in 2014.
As the year progressed, excitement and optimism turned into gloom as sales fell in almost all segments forcing Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) to revise growth projection for the fiscal downward twice.
In October, SIAM lowered car sales growth forecast to just 1-3 per cent for the fiscal, from the 9-11 per cent announced in July.
Three months earlier, it had pegged car sales growth rate at 10-12 per cent. The industry body said with a subdued growth in sales, the forecast may be revised a third time next month.
So far this fiscal, 12,40,688 cars have been sold – up just 1.28 per cent from the same period last year. Even the festive season failed to push sales with passenger car sales declining by 8.25 per cent in November.
Sales were hurt badly by rising fuel prices, high interest rates and overall low consumer sentiment. A big price difference between petrol and diesel added to the woes of those manufacturers which predominantly make petrol vehicles as demand for diesel cars soared.
This led to some NGOs and a section of the government seeking additional duties on diesel vehicles to discourage the subsidised fuel
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