Automobile makers close March on a positive note (Roundup)

New Delhi/Chennai, April 1 (IANS) Automobile manufacturers closed March 2016, also the final month of fiscal 2015-16, on a positive note with most of them logging sales growth.

The industry is also hopeful of softening interest rate regime to boost their sales during the new fiscal.

India’s leading passenger vehicle manufacturer Maruti Suzuki reported a 15.9 percent growth in total sales for March.

The company’s total sales stood at 129,345 units (domestic 118,895 units, exports 10,450 units) — up from an off-take of 111,555 units (domestic 103,719 units, exports 7,836 units) during the corresponding period of 2015.

According to the automobile manufacturer, its total sales in the last fiscal grew by 10.6 percent to 1,429,248 units.

“With this, the company ended 2015-16 with its highest ever sales of 1,429,248 units, a growth of 10.6 percent. This comprises the highest ever domestic sales of 1,305,351 units and 123,897 units of exports,” the company said in a statement.

“For the fourth year in a row, the top four best-selling models in India are from Maruti Suzuki: Alto, Dzire, Swift and WagonR.”

On the other hand, the country’s second largest car maker Hyundai Motor India (HMIL) sold 51,452 units (domestic 41,201 units, exports 10,251 units), up from 49,740 units (domestic 39,525 units, exports 10,215 units) sold in the corresponding month of 2015.

For the last financial year, the automobile manufacturer reported an increase of 15.1 percent in domestic sales to 484,324 units, its highest ever, as compared to 420,668 units sold during 2014-15.

“Hyundai for FY16 achieved an all-time highest volume of 484,324 units with 15.1 percent yearly growth with highest-ever market share of 17 percent plus, on the strong performance of models like Creta, Elite i20 and Grand i10,” said HMIL’s senior vice president, sales and marketing, Rakesh Srivastava.

On its part, Tata Motors Ltd closed last month selling a total of 53,057 units as against 52,479 units sold in March 2015.

Cumulative sales (including exports) for Tata Motors for FY 15-16 were 511,711 units, higher by two percent over 502,281 vehicles, sold last year.

While Tata Motors sales of passenger cars were not up to the mark, its commercial vehicles did well to boost up the overall sales.

Utility vehicle major Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd clocked a total sales of 52,718 units up from 45,124 units sold during March 2015.

The company logged growth in passenger cars and commercial vehicles segments.

“At Mahindra we are happy to have achieved an overall growth of 17 percent during March 2016 and six percent for FY2016, despite various challenges,” president & chief executive (automotive) Pravin Shah was quoted as saying in a company statement.

“Going forward, we hope to see good opportunity with our wide product portfolio. Further, the likely softening of interest rates in the upcoming RBI monetary policy, will help the automotive industry to maintain its growth momentum in FY2017,” he added.

In the two wheeler segment, Eicher Motors Ltd sold 51,320 motorcycles last month logging 52 percent growth over same period last year.

“Reaching sales of over 50,000 motorcycles in a single month is a significant milestone for Royal Enfield. We approximately manufactured a similar number of motorcycles in 2010 that goes on to show our focus and hard work that we have put in all these years,” its president Rudratej Singh was quoted as saying in the statement.

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