Initial responses from auto-makers indicate that this Diwali has brought some cheer to car and two-wheeler makers. Many of them have reported strong sales during this festival period.

“Deliveries and retails were better than expectations this Dhanteras and Padwa. Bookings in the last 10-12 days and conversions to retails have been quite good. Our members are happy with the sales and are hopeful of the positive sentiment extending beyond Diwali too,” Ashish Harsharaj Kale, President of FADA (Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations) told BusinessLine . While companies with which BusinessLine spoke to sought a couple of more days to disclose the complete sales numbers; most of them said they witnessed impressive sales on Dhanteras.

It is learnt that leading car-maker Maruti, which has been seeing a significant fall in monthly sales of its passenger vehicles, is reported to have done well this Diwali season.

A few days back, the company, at an investors’ conference call, indicated that festival season demand was good and there was continued positive momentum towards Diwali.

Its recently-launched mini SUV S-Presso helped revive the sales momentum for Maruti. S-Presso garnered more than 16,500 bookings since its launch on September 30. The company has delivered about 6,000 units of S-Presso so far.

Attracting customers

Hyundai Motor Company also pointed out that their sales were better this Diwali. Its recently-launched compact SUV Venue continues to attract customers.

Leading utility vehicle maker Mahindra & Mahindra delivered close to 13,500 units on Dhanteras’ day. This number was significantly higher than the deliveries reported last year.

Tata Motors said though the early part of the festival period was soft on account of GST rate cut-related confusion among prospective buyers, enquiries and conversions improved thereafter. The company expects October retail performance to be stronger than September. “This Diwali, we have launched the CVT variants of Datsun GO and GO+ and maximised value offers with the introduction of special financing deals on all our products. As a result, we are seeing high traction in the form of increased enquiries across the country, including Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities,” said Rakesh Srivastava, Managing Director, Nissan India.

The top luxury car-maker Mercedes Benz sold a record 250 units of its cars in the New Delhi-NCR region on the day of Dhanteras.

Strong two-wheeler sales

Two-wheeler companies also reported to have done well during this Diwali season.

The country’s largest two-wheeler brand Hero MotoCorp indicated that, given the record sales on the day of Dhanteras, overall, it would record a healthy double-digit increase in volumes over the previous year. The company said there was a significant increase in footfalls in its retail outlets during this Diwali week.

Suzuki Suzuki Motorcycle India continues to buck the two-wheeler market trend with its strong response to 125 cc scooters.

Bajaj Auto had indicated that demand conditions were improving and festival season sales were comparable to that of last year. The management also felt the demand decline could have bottomed out.

Given the sales growth trend during the Diwali week, many passenger and two-wheeler companies are expected to report a much better sales in October compared with September.

Also, these companies may report flat volumes on a year-on-year basis instead of a steep decline reported in recent months.

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