It was a mixed bag for the auto industry in the last month of 2012 with Mahindra & Mahindra, Ford, Honda Cars and Hero posting growth, while Hyundai Motor, Toyota Kirloskar and TVS saw their domestic sales fall during the month that is usually low-key for the sector.
Sales are generally low in December as customers stay away from new purchases to avoid losing out on re-sale when the year of manufacture comes into consideration.
In December 2012, Hyundai Motor India recorded a decline of 9.55 per cent in sales in the domestic market at 26,697 units compared to 29,516 units in the year-ago period. Its total sales however dropped marginally (2.5 per cent) to 47,833 units from 49,050 units.
Home-grown auto major M&M’s total sales of passenger vehiclesstood at 22,761 units, as against 19,341 units in December 2011— up 17.68 per cent.
Mahindra & Mahindra Chief Executive (Automotive Division) Pravin Shah said: “High interest rates, rising fuel prices and an overall slowdown in economic growth have kept consumer sentiment low during 2012. This is also evident in the auto industry sales performance for December, which traditionally has been a lean month.”
Ford India’s sales jump
Ford India sold 6,517 units in December 2012 in the domestic market as against 5,978 units sold during the same month of the previous year, up 9.02 per cent.
“Despite a tough business environment, we have seen record exports and sustained customer interest in December,” Ford India President and Managing Director Joginder Singh said. However, total sales including exports registered a rise of 42.2 per cent to 10,899 units from 7,663 units.
Honda Cars India reported a nearly four-fold increase in its total sales for December 2012 at 4,242 units. It had sold 1,072 units in the same month previous year.
Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) posted 24.31 per cent decrease in its car sales at 12,071 units in last month compared to 15,948 units in the corresponding month in 2011.
General Motors India reported 21.8 per cent decline in sales at 7,067 units last month. It had sold 9,039 units in the same month of 2011. “Despite offering various schemes on purchase of every car, the market continues to remain depressed on account of various negative factors, ” General Motors India Vice President P. Balendran said.
If the current macro economic uncertainties continue, the market is not expected to turn around in the short term, he added.
“The only hope now is on a good Union Budget to address some of the concerns of the industry, ,” Mr. Balendran said.
Boosted by its new models, Renault India reported over 32-fold jump in sales in December at 5,924 units. In the same month in 2011, the company had only two modelsin the Indian market and had sold 185 units.
In the two-wheeler space, Hero MotoCorp reported a marginal increase in its sales at 5.41 lakh units in December 2012. It had sold 5.40 lakh units in December 2011.
TVS Motor Company’s total sales declined by 9.7 per cent to 1.52 lakh units from 1.68 lakh units. Domestic sales of two-wheelers witnessed a decline of 8.30 per cent at 1.35 lakh units in December 2012, against 1.47 lakh units sold in same month of the previous year.