Utility vehicles drive auto sales in May, passenger vehicle sales rise 8.63%

Auto sales report

Passenger vehicle sales in India rose by 8.63%in May, mainly driven by strong sales of utility vehicles.

According to data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the growth registered in the passenger vehicles (PVs) segment last month was the best ever May sales.

Domestic PV sales rose to 2,51,642 units in May 2017 from 2,31,640 units in the same month last year, SIAM said.

Car sales in the domestic market rose by 4.8% to 1,66,630 units last month as against 1,58,996 units in May last year.

“This is the best ever sales performance of passenger vehicles in the month of May. Sales were driven by both utility vehicles and cars, which also posted their best sales in a ‘May month’ till date,” Vishnu Mathur, SIAM director general, told reporters here.

New model launches and the continued phenomenon of strong sales in the utility vehicle segment, comprising compact SUVs, led to strong growth in May, he added.

Utility vehicles during the period under review grew by 18.8% to 69,845 units from 58,793 units in May 2016, driven by strong sales of compact SUVs like Maruti Vitara Brezza and Hyundai Creta.

“PV sales continue to do well and with the upcoming GST along with prospects of a good monsoon season, we expect growth momentum to continue going ahead,” Mathur said.

Despite strong sales, Siam, however, stuck to its earlier growth forecast of around 10% for the PV segment.

Last month, Maruti Suzuki India continued its domination in the domestic PV space by selling 1,30,248 units at a growth of 15.10%.

Rival Hyundai Motor India was a distant second with 42,007 units with a growth of 1.59% followed by home- grown Mahindra & Mahindra at the third spot with 20,270 units, up 3.23%.

Tata Motors overtook Honda Cars India to take the fourth spot with 12,499 units, up 32.18%, while Honda Cars sold 11,278 units during the month, up 13.3%.

In the two-wheeler segment, total sales in May increased by 11.89% to 16,94,325 units compared to 15,14,334 units in the year-ago month.

“Rural markets have mostly recovered from the after effects of demonetisation and results are there to see,” SIAM deputy director general Sugato Sen said.