Car wholesales in slow lane in May due to high base effect, elections

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The overall passenger vehicle dispatches from companies to dealers stood at 3,50,257 lakh units last month as compared to 3,35,436 in the same month a year ago, registering a growth of 4 per cent.

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) said its total domestic passenger vehicle sales rose marginally to 1,44,002 units last month from 1,43,708 units in the year-ago period.

The company saw a year-on-year dip in sales of entry-level and compact cars last month as against May 2023.

Utility vehicle sales, including that of Brezza, Grand Vitara, Ertiga, S-Cross and XL6, however, rose to 54,204 units last month as against 46,243 units a year earlier.

“It has been discussed that growth this year will not be very high. It will be in single digit because of the high base effect. Secondly, there were elections and the scorching temperatures also had an impact on the overall sales in May,” MSI Senior Executive Officer (Marketing & Sales) Partho Banerjee told reporters.

He further said: “We are very hopeful that we will start seeing the green shoots coming with the election results coming in. I think things will turn around.”

Banerjee noted that the company is going to introduce a limited edition trims of its entry-level cars — Alto K10, S-Presso and Celerio — in order to rejuvenate the small car segment.

The Dream Series edition trims of the three models will be launched at a price point of 4.99 lakh (ex-showroom), he said.

“Based on the feedback of our target customers we have come up with an edition in which we are mostly focusing on the utilities and convenience features,” Banerjee said.

Sales of Maruti Suzuki’s mini segment cars, comprising Alto and S-Presso, declined to 9,902 units last month from 12,236 units in May 2023.

Rival Hyundai Motor India reported a 1 per cent year-on-year increase in domestic dispatch of vehicles to dealers last month.

The company’s wholesales rose to 49,151 units in May as compared to 48,601 units in May 2023.

Hyundai Motor India COO Tarun Garg said that the sales growth this financial year is anticipated to remain in low single-digit range.

“In April also the industry grew by around 1.5 per cent …so April plus May the industry growth should be around 2-2.5 per cent over same period last year,” he noted.

Tata Motors said its passenger vehicle sales, including electric vehicles, in the domestic market, were up 2 per cent at 47,075 units as compared to 45,984 units in the year-ago month.

Mahindra & Mahindra on the other hand reported a robust 31 per cent year-on- year increase in passenger vehicle dispatches last month at 43,218 units.

It had sold 32,886 units in May 2023.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor reported a 24 per cent year-on-year increase in total wholesales in May at 25,273 units as compared to that of the same month last year.

Kia India said its total wholesales increased 4 per cent year-on-year to 19,500 units in May. The automaker had dispatched 18,766 units to dealers in May 2023.

“So far in this year, we have been aggressive in introducing new competitive variants of our models, which has contributed significantly to our sales,” Kia India Senior VP and Head Sales & Marketing Hardeep Singh Brar said.

With a robust network expansion strategy in place, the company shall continue to grow in the rest of the year and cross the one million domestic sales milestone soon, he added.

MG Motor India reported a five per cent dip in wholesales at 4,769 units in May compared to the same month last year. The company had dispatched 5,006 units to dealers in May 2023.

First Published Date: 02 Jun 2024, 09:21 AM IST

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