Passenger vehicle sales in July registered record growth post the Goods and Services tax rollout with manufacturers restoring supplies to dealerships and stocking up ahead of the festive season. Six leading companies, including Maruti Suzuki, Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M), Honda and Toyota, recorded high double-digit growth, as they replenished the inventory at dealerships.
Initial estimates suggest wholesale volume last month rose in healthy double digits of 13-14 per cent and may have inched ahead of March 2012 peak of 295,403 units to approximately 2,96,100 units, ahead by 500-800 units.
Automakers in India report wholesale volumes--despatches to dealers and not retail numbers sold to customers. To be sure, while it was a bumper wholesale performance, retail sales tailed off in July due to pre-buying ahead of the goods and services tax (GST) rollout at the start of last month.
Industry volumes were propelled by Maruti Suzuki which reported its highest-ever monthly sales of 153,298 units, which is almost 10-15 per cent of its average monthly sales in recently times.
Mahindra & Mahindra and Honda Cars India that had seen sales slow to the low single digits, registered a healthy expansion of 21% and 22%, respectively, in July. New model launches at Tata Motors continued to drive volumes at the company, with despatches growing 10% in July.
Maruti Suzuki 1.96 per cent sales rose across segments. Sales of mini cars Alto and WagonR grew 20.7% to 42,310 units, while those of compacts (Swift, Celerio, Ignis, Baleno and DZire) rose 25.3 per cent to 63,116 units. Sales of midsize sedan Ciaz rose 23.5% to 6,377 units. Demand remained strong for utility vehicles--Ertiga, S-Cross, Vitara Brezza – and grew 48.3% to 25,781 units. In the commercial vehicle segment, the company clocked sales of 703 units of the Super Carry.