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Automakers sales revv up in Feb, but note ban effect stays

Author: IANS/Thursday, March 2, 2017/Categories: Auto & Ancillary

Automakers sales revv up in Feb, but note ban effect stays

Mumbai (IANS) - As the impact of demonetisation phases out, automobile manufacturers reported broadly positive monthly sales results for last month. "The impact of demonetisation is still felt in the automotive industry," said Abdul Majeed, Partner- Price Waterhouse and an auto expert.
"However, the impact is slowly phasing out as the currency in the circulation is coming back to normal. The OEM's (original equipment manufacturer) with better performing new launches continue to grow." Maruti Suzuki India reported a surge of 10.9% in its monthly sales. The company's sales during the month under review rose to 130,280 units from 117,451 units sold during the corresponding month last year.

For February, the company's domestic sales surged by 11.7% to 120,735 units from 108,115 units. Similarly, exports were up by 2.2% with 9,545 units shipped out, up from 9,336 units sold abroad in February 2016. 

Another automobile major, Hyundai Motor India sold 52,734 units last month, logging a 6% volume growth. The firm sold 52,734 units (domestic 42,327 units, exports 10,407) last month as against 49,729 units (domestic 40,716 units, exports 9,013) sold in February 2016.

According to Rakesh Srivastava, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing at Hyundai Motor India, the Union Budget has generated customer confidence as it has positively impacted the overall business sentiments.
Homegrown automobile major Tata Motors' total vehicle sales for last month rose 2%. The company's total passenger and commercial vehicle sales, including exports, in February 2017 increased to 47,573 units from 46,674 units sold in the like month of last year.

"Tata Motors' passenger vehicle business grew by 12% in February owing to a continued strong demand for the Tata Tiago," said Mayank Pareek, President, Passenger Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors. 
"Our recently launched lifestyle UV HEXA, has received an encouraging response and going forward our robust product portfolio will drive growth in the coming months."

However, leading utility vehicle maker Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) reported a decline in its total sales for the month under review. The company sold 42,714 vehicles compared to 44,002 vehicles during February 2016. "The auto industry is seeing some positive trends emerging over the last two months. With rural sentiments improving, we believe that there will be a turnaround in demand over the next few months for the small commercial vehicles space," said Pravin Shah, President and Chief Executive (Automotive), M&M. 
"The industry is also waiting for the implementation of the BS (Bharat Stage) 4 norms from April 2017 and at Mahindra, we have geared the supply chain so that there is no strain in moving to meet the new emissions norms."
According to Shah, the impending implementation of GST (Goods and Services Tax) will provide a veritable boost to the auto industry and the economy in general.
Ford India's combined domestic wholesales and exports last month grew to 24,026 vehicles from 17,306 in the corresponding month of last year. Passenger car manufacturer Honda Cars India reported a growth of 9.4% in its monthly domestic sales of 14,249 units against 13,020 units sold in the corresponding month of last year. 
Toyota Kirloskar Motor registered a 12% growth in its domestic sales which rose to 11,543 units in February 2017. Commercial vehicle maker Ashok Leyland posted a positive sales figure for last month which stood at 14,067 units, up from 13,406 units sold in the corresponding month of 2016.
In the two wheeler segment, Hero MotoCorp Ltd (HMCL) - the world's largest two-wheeler manufacturer - closed last month selling 524,766 units as against 550,992 units in the corresponding month of last year.
Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India's domestic sales grew 5% to 369,865 units from 351,401 units in February 2016. Two and three wheeler maker TVS Motor Company reported a decline in its monthly sales which stood at 211,470 units as against 219,467 units sold during the like period of last year.

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S Vijaykrishnan
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