Passenger vehicle sales in India grew in strong double digits for the fifth straight month in December, as the market continued to witness pent-up demand and preference for personal mobility solutions amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Industry estimates put sales last month at around 2.78 lakh passenger vehicles, nearly 18% higher compared with 2.36 lakh units a year earlier. These are dispatches from factories to dealerships, as automakers in India do not report monthly retail sales to customers.
Maruti Suzuki, reported growth of 14.6%, selling 140,754 units in December.
While wholesale volume of mini cars Alto and S-Presso increased 4.4% to 24,927 units, those of compact vehicles (WagonR, Swift, Celerio, Ignis, Baleno, DZire and Tour S) rose 18.2% to 77,641 units and utility vehicles (Vitara Brezza, Ertiga, XL6 and S-Cross) grew 8% to 25,701units. The company sold 1,270 units of the midsize Ciaz sedan, compared with 1,786 units in the year-earlier month.
Volumes at Korean rival Hyundai Motor grew 25% to 47,400 units — the best ever December sales for the company in India — helping it increase its market share.
At Tata Motors, sales of passenger vehicles nearly doubled to 24,545 units last month, as against 12,785 units a year earlier.
Naveen Soni, senior vice-president at Toyota Kirloskar, said customer orders had been rising significantly and retail sales had also been “very encouraging”.