Product-wise, scooter sales inched up by 3.7%, whereas the motorcycle sales logged a decline of 3.13%

Passenger vehicles sales rise 9 in February SIAM PTI/file photo
news Business Friday, March 10, 2017 - 19:07

 The total domestic sales of passenger vehicles rose by 9.01 per cent in February, industry data showed on Friday.

According to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), total sales of passenger vehicles, which include cars, utility vehicles and vans, surged to 255,359 units last month from 234,244 units sold during the corresponding month of 2016.

On the sub-segment basis, sales of passenger cars rose by 4.90 per cent in the month under review to 172,623 units from 164,559 units in February last year.

The utility vehicles' off-take during the month zoomed by 21.79 per cent to 65,877 units, while the sales of vans edged up by 8.10 per cent to 16,859 units.

The industry data revealed that sales of overall commercial vehicles went up by 7.34 per cent to 66,939 units in February. The segment is a key indicator of economic activity.

However, the sales in the three-wheelers segment plunged by 21.35 per cent to 35,356 units during the month.

In addition, overall sales of two-wheelers, which include scooters, motorcycles and mopeds, was a tad lower by 0.01 per cent at 1,362,045 units.

Product-wise, scooter sales in the month under review inched up by 3.70 per cent to 452,295 units, whereas the motorcycle sub-segment sales logged a decline of 3.13 per cent to 832,697 units.

On the other hand, mopeds' off-take surged by 15.99 per cent to 77,053 units.

The industry data disclosed that the Indian automobile sector reported a marginal rise of 0.94 per cent in February 2017 -- with total sales at 1,719,699 units across segments and categories.

Moreover, the overall exports across categories increased by 11.84 per cent to 285,265 units during last month.

Industry experts were of the view that the automobile industry is expected to grow in the upcoming months.

"Auto sector is showing signs of bucking the trend after a negative impact of demonetisation, and are getting back on to the growth track," said Sridhar V., Partner, Grant Thornton India LLP.

"Much improvement is expected in the coming months."

According to Abdul Majeed, Partner - Price Waterhouse, the dispatches from original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to dealers in both the passenger cars and commercial vehicles segment have recorded a good growth compared to February 2016, and expected brisk retail sales.

"The growth of passenger cars was driven by new launches, especially in the utility vehicles segment," Majeed asserted.

Majeed pointed out that the impact of demonetisation was still felt in the rural sections as the result of which major two wheeler OEMs were cautious with their dispatches to dealers.

"Pre-buying due to BS IV (Bharat Stage-IV) norms that are effective from 1 April 2017 is helping in the growth of commercial vehicle segment," Majeed explained.

"Hopefully, the impact of demonetisation in the rural economy will be addressed in the coming months. With the implementation of GST (Goods and Services Tax) in the next fiscal, the outlook for automotive looks better."

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