Passenger vehicle sales set to cross 10 lakh mark in festive period this year

Source : PTI | New Delhi: Domestic passenger vehicle sales are expected to cross 10 lakh mark in the festive period this year with demand remaining robust, especially for utility vehicles. The 68-day festive period this year falls between August 17 and November 14. Few days in between are not considered auspicious for buying.

In an interaction with PTI, Maruti Suzuki India Senior Executive Officer (Marketing and Sales) Shashank Srivastava said that usually the festive season sales account for around 22-26% of the overall sales during a year. “With the overall passenger vehicle sales expected to be in the range of 40 lakh units this fiscal, the festive season is expected to witness sales of around 1 million units,” he said.

Srivastava said the industry has witnessed strong sales this year and the same is expected to continue in the coming months as well.

“We have seen the best ever April, May, June and July in terms of sales this fiscal. July witnessed the second highest sales ever in a month at around 3.52 lakh units. August is also expected to be in the range of 3.5 lakh units,” Srivastava said.

Demand parameters continue to be robust and the only two issues which need to be kept a close vigil on is the way monsoon performs between August and September, he stated.

High rate of vehicle loans is also a worry as around 83% of the consumers take this route to buy cars.

When asked about sales projections for Maruti Suzuki India, Srivastava said the company also gets around 22-25% of its overall yearly sales during the festive period.

“As we are particularly strong in smaller centres where people follow the festive period more keenly, our performance is usually slightly better than the rest of the players,” he said.

Also the company’s recently launched models are going to play a positive role in terms of sales going into the festive season, Srivastava said.

The country’s largest carmaker currently has a market share of around 43% in the overall passenger vehicle segment. Expressing similar sentiments, Tata Motors Passenger Vehicles Managing Director Shailesh Chandra said the industry expects the festive season to be really good this year.

“We all expect that the festive season is going to be really good…the demand has remained very strong and it is at a sustainable level for multiple quarters. So we therefore are pretty confident about the period,” he said.

Automobile dealers’ body FADA has noted that there’s an optimism about a rise in retails as the industry approaches the festive season. It noted that the inventory level in the PV segment has breached the 50-day mark in anticipation of the upcoming festival season.

FADA however noted that the slowdown in entry level cars remains and a larger concern is the IMD’s projection of a below-average rainfall in August, potentially leading to lower crop yields.

This could impact the purchasing power, especially in rural regions, it said. FADA represents over 15,000 automobile dealers across the country.