The first month of this financial year began on a positive note for auto manufacturers, with most of them posting higher sales than in April last year.

Maruti Suzuki India, the country’s largest passenger car-maker, said sales grew more than 27 per cent year-on-year (YoY) during April.

It sold over one lakh units, compared with 79,119 units in April 2014.

Similarly, sales at the second-largest manufacturer Hyundai Motor India (HMIL), also grew around 10 per cent during the month, led by new launches.

“Hyundai, with a volume of 38,601 units, continued the growth momentum with 9.5 per cent increase over the last year on the strength of a strong and young product portfolio led by 12,425 units of Elite i20 and i20 Active in challenging conditions,” said Rakesh Srivastava, Senior Vice-President — Sales and Marketing, HMIL.

Subsidiaries of Honda Cars and Toyota Motor also saw sales grow in April.

Home-grown Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) also clocked positive results in April, though only by a small margin.

“The auto industry is hopeful of a better financial year as we see positive sentiments on the back of various policy and project announcements, leading to higher levels of economic activity,” said Pravin Shah, President and Chief Executive – Automotive, M&M.

Two-wheeler sales

In the two-wheeler segment, while the Japanese subsidiaries of Honda and Suzuki continued their growth story, home-grown Hero MotoCorp reported a decline of more than six per cent in sales.

The rural demand for automobiles has been hurt by unseasonal rain in March.