The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Car sales race ahead in May

New Delhi, June 16: Domestic passenger car sales in May surged ahead by 41 per cent to 55,166 units while exports jumped 61 per cent to 7,496 units, the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) said today.

SIAM said cumulative car sales for the first two months of the current financial year grew by 35 per cent to 97,672 units from 72,345 in the year-ago period, reflecting a spurt in the economy.

Auto sales are closely monitored by economists since it reflects aggregate consumer spending patterns, and consequently, are indicators to the health of the domestic economy.

The report also said combined sales of trucks and buses rose to 16,725 units from 13,123 a year earlier while sales for the first two months rose 16 per cent to 28,569 units from 24,520 a year ago.

Sales of motorcycles for the month rose by a modest 7 per cent to 3,47,059 units from 3,23,792 during the same month of the last financial year.

However, scooter sales dipped to 71,392 units from 73,578 a year ago. Sales for the cumulative April-May period slipped by 11 per cent to 1,269,27 units from 1,43,306 a year earlier.

Sales of Tata Engineeringís Indica leapt by 126 per cent to 6772 units in May, while sales of the recently-introduced Indigo sedan model registered 1,983 units.

Sales at Hyundai Motor India Ltd, a wholly-owned unit of Korean automobile major Hyundai Motors, rose 14 per cent to 8,900 units in May from 7,761 a year earlier. Cumulative sales in April-May of this financial rose by a higher 30 per cent to 17,950 units from 14,912 a year earlier.

Combined vehicle sales at Maruti Udyog Ltd, a unit of Japanís Suzuki Motor Corp, has jumped 35 per cent to 33,501 units during the month from 21,596 a year earlier.

The countryís biggest carmakerís initial public offer, in which the government unloads 25 per cent equity out of itís 45 per cent stake, and is scheduled to close on June 19 has so far been heavily subscribed.

However, Ford Indiaís Ikon, General Motorís Opel range of cars, Fiat India Automobileís Sienna, Hindustan Motorís Lancer has all registered negative growth for the month. General Motors India is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the US auto giant General Motors Corp.

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