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Slow revival in car sales

Companies fare better than May as they gradually ramp up operations after relaxation in lockdown
Maruti Suzuki India reported a 53.7 per cent drop in domestic sales at 53,139 units last month against 1,14,861 units in June 2019.

Our Bureau   |   New Delhi   |   Published 02.07.20, 03:41 AM

Major automobile manufacturers, including Maruti Suzuki India, Hyundai, Toyota and Mahindra & Mahindra, on Wednesday reported a big dip in June sales, though they fared better than May as companies gradually ramped up operations after relaxation in lockdowns.

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI), the country’s largest car maker, reported a 53.7 per cent drop in domestic sales at 53,139 units last month against 1,14,861 units in June 2019. Its June performance, however, was better than May when it had posted domestic sales of 13,888 units.

“On the customer side, if you look at the parameters which reflect demand pattern which are enquiries, bookings and retail, I think we have reached levels of 80-85 per cent of the normal,” MSI executive director (marketing and sales) Shashank Srivastava said.

It means “there is quite a good pick-up in sales mainly because of the pent-up demand” as there was no retail in April and very less in May, he said, adding that June was in that sense more a representative month because showrooms were open the entire month.

With sales demand reviving, he said, the companies are now also looking at ramping up production.

Hyundai Motor India Ltd (HMIL) reported domestic sales of 21,320 units against 42,007 units in June 2019.

Similarly, Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) saw domestic sales plunge 63.53 per cent in June to 3,866 units against 10,603 units in the same month last year.

“With demand gradually coming back in the market, we have been able to keep up with customer expectations. Thanks to our special financing offers and buy back offers which has also helped bring customers back to dealerships,” Naveen Soni, TKM senior vice-president (sales and services), said.

Homegrown auto major Mahindra & Mahindra saw domestic sales drop 53 per cent to 18,505 units last month against 39,471 units in June 2019.

“The automotive industry has started to see recovery both in the passenger and small commercial vehicle segments. This has been led primarily by rising rural demand and movement of essential goods across the country,” said Veejay Nakra, chief executive officer, automotive division, M&M Ltd.

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