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Maruti Suzuki Leads India Car Sales Decline; Early Signals of Recession?

ciazIndia’s passenger car market leader Maruti Suzuki India Ltd on Saturday said it sold 103,973 units last month, down from 105,087 units sold in October 2013, followed by Nissan Motor Company which reported a dip in sales by 774 units at 4,106 units, down from 4,880 units sold in Oct 2013.

Maruti Suzuki said the company sold 97,069 units in the domestic market last month up from 96,062 units sold in Oct 2013, due to a decline in exports to 6,904 units last month as against 9,025 units exported during the comparable period last year.

Maruti Suzuki’s only car that sold better was Ciaz at 6,345 units, from 262 units sold in Oct 2013.

Maruti Suzuki attributed low volumes due to limited working days in a festive season besides cyclone in in Gujarat postponing shipment of around 1,000 units to Algeria and Egypt to November 2014.

Nissan Motor India Ltd said it sold 29,847 units so far in FY14, marking a growth of 71.5 percent over the same period last year.

Even Tata Motors reported negative growth on Saturday showing a decline by 17% compared to sales in October 2013. Its total sales, including exports stood at 42,819 units as against 51,638 units sold in October 2013.

The company’s domestic sales of commercial and passenger vehicles last month were 38,760 units, down from 46,926 units sold in October last year.

Cumulative sales for the company for the fiscal are 279,489 units, lower by 22% over 356,380 units sold last year.

General Motors India sales were down 45 percent in October 2014 and it sold 4,263 vehicles in October against 7,715 units sold in the corresponding period last year.

“Even though the lower fuel prices are encouraging, the market is not showing any movement apart from new entries. Even the festival season did not bring the expected momentum in the market. The turnaround of the automobile sector is still not visible in the short-term,” P. Balendran, vice president, General Motors India, said.

“Industry needs the lower excise duty benefits to be extended till budget and beyond with additional stimulus package in the next budget to boost the overall manufacturing sector, create additional employment opportunities and improve its contribution to GDP,” he said. The company exported 160 units to Chile in October.

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