Automakers drive on slow lane in Feb.

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Maruti posts near-flat growth while Tata Motors clocks low single-digit rise in sales

Major players like Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors posted a low single-digit growth in domestic passenger vehicle sales in February 2019 while players such as Honda and Mahindra and Mahindra registered double digit growth.

Market leader Maruti Suzuki posted an almost flat growth in sales of domestic passenger vehicles during the month at more than 1.36 lakh units. The company said sales of its mini cars Alto and old WagonR stood at 24,751 units, down 26.7% from year-earlier period.

However, sales of compact segment vehicles, including new Wagon R, Swift, Celerio, Ignis, Baleno and Dzire, rose were up 11.4% to 72,678 units. Sales of Ciaz declined 37% to 3,084 units while those of utility vehicles — Gypsy, Vitara Brezza, S-Cross and Ertiga — were up rose 7.4% to 21,834 units. Sales of vans were up increased 17% to 14,565 units.

Exports, the company said, declined by almost 20% to 9,582 units.

New generation products

Tata Motors said its passenger vehicle sales in the domestic market rose 2% to 18,110 units on the back of good demand for its new generation vehicles. Mayank Pareek, president, passenger vehicles business unit, Tata Motors Ltd. said, “In February 2019, we strived to maintain our growth trajectory at a time when the market is under stress. Despite the challenging environment last month, we witnessed a growth of 2%, fuelled by the good performance of our new generation products.”

Likewise, Honda Cars India posted 16% growth with domestic sales of 13,527 units in February 2019. Rajesh Goel, senior vice-president and director, sales and marketing, Honda Cars India said, “The overall market sentiment is not overtly buoyant at this stage, however, we hope the market will revive soon.”

For Mahindra and Mahindra, domestic passenger vehicles sales rose 17% to 26,109 units. The company’s president, automotive sector, Rajan Wadhera, said February had augured well for Mahindra with a strong double digit sales growth of 16% in its utility vehicles portfolio.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) sold 11,760 units in the domestic market, down from 11,864 units in February 2018. N. Raja, deputy managing director, TKM, said, “We have seen improvement in consumer sentiment as compared to last month leading to a growth in demand However, auto sales is witnessing a temporary slowdown in pre-election phase in addition to factors like tight liquidity conditions impacting the buying behaviour.”

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