Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. (MSIL) on Saturday reported over three-fold increase in its net profit at Rs.687.53 crore in the third quarter of the current fiscal ending December 31, 2009, against the same quarter of previous fiscal, while its net sales went up by over 62 per cent to Rs.7,334 crore.

“In the October-December 2009 quarter, favourable conditions in the domestic market supported by the government’s stimulus package and ease of automobile finance helped achieve good sales. Commodity prices were favourable for a major part of the last quarter but started to harden in the last few weeks,” a company statement said. Notably, MSIL recently announced hike in prices in almost all its models.

In the third quarter, the company’s domestic sales volume grew by 37.8 per cent to 2.18-lakh units, led by Alto and WagonR, while its exports went up by over 167 per cent to 39,116 units led by compact car A-Star. The scrappage schemes offered by some European governments, an appreciating euro and efforts in the non-European markets resulted in the growth in exports, it added.

On the outlook for the current quarter and the year ahead, MSIL said it remained cautiously optimistic about sales volume. “The margins would be under pressure due to introduction of Bharat Stage IV emission norms in the large volume models and hardening of commodity prices,” it added. MSIL plans to invest Rs.1,700 crore to expand the production capacity at its Manesar plant by 2.5-lakh units annually by 2012. Its current overall capacity is 10-lakh units annually (7-lakh Gurgaon plant and 3-lakh Manesar plant).

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