Industry insiders expect as many as 321,000-325,000 passenger cars to ship from factories to dealers in June — an increase of about 25% compared to 255,743 units sold in the same period last year.
Volumes would have been even higher, probably breaking previous records, had the market leader been
did not go in for a one week maintenance shutdown. Sales of passenger cars, sedans and commercial vehicles registered record volumes of 334,311 units in October 2020 and then of 321,794 units in March 2022.
Automakers in India report wholesale shipments from factories and not retail sales to customers. “Demand parameters as reflected in inquiries and bookings remain stable at a healthy level,” Shashank Srivastava, senior executive director (marketing and sales), Maruti Suzuki, told ET.
“Despite some OEMs, including Maruti Suzuki, having their annual maintenance shutdown, overall industry PV numbers for June are expected to be quite high.”
Maruti Suzuki has pending orders for approximately 315,000 units. Hardeep Singh Brar, vice president and head of sales and marketing at Kia India, said the Korean auto giant expects to record its highest monthly sales in June.
“The offer is better than before. China is now open. There is some headwind (in the market) due to inflation, the war in Ukraine and stock market volatility. But the old pipeline is very strong. So we don’t see any wholesale or retail issues,” he said.
Kia India previously had its best ever sales of 22,622 units in March 2022.
However, with the stock in the channel at half the normal level – 14-15 days – wait times on popular models can remain quite long. Ravi Bhatia, president of consultancy JATO Dynamics, confirmed that there is a long wait for bestsellers, especially SUVs.
While Hyundai Venue has a waiting time of up to 16 weeks, Maruti Suzuki Ertiga has a waiting time of 34-36 weeks, Mahindra Thar 24-36 weeks, Hyundai Creta 28-34 weeks and Mahindra XUV700 18-24 months.
As the order book continues to grow, Tarun Garg, director (marketing, sales and service) at Hyundai Motor India, is more “optimistic than cautious” about the growth momentum that will continue in the market in the coming months.
“We fully understand that there are geopolitical risks, fuel prices are high and interest rates have risen 90 basis points in the past month. But what we have seen in the past is that India has been more resilient than the rest of the world due to strong domestic consumption. India has hedged against a total reliance on globalization, which is coming to our rescue in these times,” Garg said.