Pandemic pushed back growth in auto sales by many years: SIAM

For FY21, car sales declined by 2.24% and two-wheeler sales declined by 13.19%.
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Base effect, along with low interest rates and pent-up demand, accelerated domestic passenger vehicle sales in March 2021 on both year-on-year and sequential basis. However, on a fiscal to fiscal basis, pandemic-hit FY21 battered the industry badly.

Sales of passenger vehicles increased to 2,90,939 last month compared to over 135,196 units during the same period of 2020. In February 2021, 281,380 units of passenger vehicles were sold, including the sub-segments of cars, utility vehicles, and vans. A total of 156,985 passenger cars were sold in the domestic market up from 80,727 units in the like period of 2020. SIAM said that the data does not include sales figures from some key players such as Tata Motors.

In terms of utility vehicles, sales grew by to 1,22,350, whereas vans' offtake went up by 11,604 units against the same month a year ago. Similarly, two-wheeler sales rose in March. It increased 1,496,806 units last month compared to 866,845 units. Consequently, the overall automobile sales including PVs, 2Ws and three-wheelers rose to 1,819,682 units last month from 1,029,518 units sold during March 2020.

For FY21, the data showed that total domestic PV sales declined by 2.24% to 2,711,457 units from 2,773,519 units during the same period of 2020. Besides, the data showed that two-wheeler sales declined by 13.19% to 15,119,387 units from 17,416,432 units during the previous fiscal. Furthermore, commercial vehicle sales declined by 20.77% in FY21 to 568,559 units from 717,593 units during FY20.

In addition, the overall automobile sales fell by 13.60% to 18,615,588 units from 21,545,551 units sold in the previous fiscal.

Maruti Suzuki MD and CEO and SIAM President Kenichi Ayukawa said: "On the sales front, a deep structural slowdown in the industry even before the pandemic, combined with the impact of Covid-19 in 2020-21, has pushed all vehicle segments back by many years."

"Recovery from here will require time and efforts, by all stakeholders. There is uncertainty in the value chain owing to semiconductors, lockdowns and raw material. In an environment of uncertainty, instead of trying to predict the future, we will all work hard to create it."

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