Automobile manufacturers witness record sales this festival season

S Ronendra Singh New Delhi | Updated on November 19, 2020

In top gear Between August and November, Maruti Suzuki has sold 4.60 lakh vehicles   -  PTI

But it’s too early to celebrate as the nearfuture is still hazy, says industry veterans

This year’s festival season was unusually different due to the pandemic, but auto manufacturers managed to score well and some companies reported record sales during the period.

For instance, Maruti Suzuki India (MSIL) and Hyundai Motor (HMIL) in passenger vehicles segment, and Hero MotoCorp in two-wheelers segment, have retailed much better numbers in the last three months compared to the same period last year.

‘Marginally better’

“The sales were marginally better as compared to the last 4-5 years. Deliveries were just above 40,000 units, which is up from around 39,000 units every year in the last four-five years between Dhanteras and Bhai Dooj,” Shashank Srivastava, Executive Director (Marketing and Sales), MSIL, told BusinessLine.

If calculated from the day one of the festival season that starts with Onam and ends with Diwali/ Bhai Dooj (August 17-November 17), the company has sold 4.60 lakh vehicles, which is marginally up as compared to previous years’, he said.

Strong momentum

Similarly, Hyundai Motor India had witnessed a strong momentum in demand for all its newly-launched products over the last few months, helping the company to grow in sales during the festival season.

“Hyundai Motor India retailed more than 1,51,000 vehicles in this year’s festival season of three months that starts from Chingam/ Onam and ends with Bhai Dooj. This translates to an average of more than 50,000 units per month and is almost 10 per cent more than the same period last year,” Tarun Garg, Director (Sales, Marketing and Service), HMIL, said.

Another trend that has emerged this festival season is a strong comeback in sales witnessed in the urban markets in addition to the good numbers that were being witnessed in the Tier-2 and Tier-3 markets, he added.

Tata Motors said that the company has climbed to the third spot in the passenger vehicles segment, in two successive quarters, recorded a market share of 7.9 per cent in first half of this financial year. It posted a growth of 22 per cent (year-to-date) vis-a-vis last year (April-October).


Higher growth

In the two-wheeler segment, Hero MotoCorp said its retail sales during the festival season stood at over 14 lakh units.

“Despite the severe disruptions on account of Covid-19 this year, the retail off-take during the 32-day festival period (from Navratri till Bhai Dooj) was 98 per cent of the festival season volumes sold by the company in 2019, and 103 per cent compared to the same period in 2018,” the company said.

Other two-wheeler companies including Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India and TVS Motor Company are also expected to report strong growth this festival season.

However, ‘all is not good’ yet and the industry veterans said that uncertainties are visible in the coming months because of the pandemic. “There is a sustainable demand in the market now, but we can see uncertainty in the coming months because fundamentally parameters are not positive to sustain at the same level. So we have to look at how fundamentals of the economy are shaping up because of the pandemic,” Srivastava of Maruti Suzuki added.

Published on November 19, 2020

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