labels: electronics - consumer
Car, television sales plungenews
Alok Agarwal
04 October 2001

Mumbai: Black September has struck Indian market severely. The infamous economic slowdown has been mauling the world a bit cruelly, and it is natural that India should also feel the pain. Two sectors that have badly affected are that of cars and colour television.

PSU car major Maruti Udyog (MUL) reported a 20.1 per cent decline in sales of its passenger car segment in the month of September 2001, selling 28,745 cars in comparison to 35,959 vehicles in the corresponding period of the previous year.

The main reasons for the negative growth, according to MUL sources, were depressed sentiments and prospective buyers deferring their buying decision due to extended inauspicious days in the month.

Maruti however did much better in the first six months ending 30 September 2001, reporting a 6-per cent growth in sales, which were placed at 1,70,269 cars in comparison to 1,61,370 cars in the corresponding period.

Similarly, Hindustan Motors, General Motors and Hyundai Motor India too reported a drop in sales. Hindustan Motors posted 40.6-per cent decline in sales in the month of September 2001 in comparison to September 2000. It sold 1.653 vehicles in comparison to 2,786 units in the corresponding period.

General Motors sales dropped 30.6 per cent in September 2001 at 800 units in comparison to 1,153 units in the corresponding month last year. Finally, Hyundai too suffered an 18.20-per cent drop in sales in the month of September 2001, which were placed at 6,781 cars in comparison to 8,242 cars in the corresponding period of the previous year.

Driven by its diesel version, Telcos Indica, however, bucked the trend, posting a 51-per cent growth in sales at 5,405 units in comparison to 5,157 units in the corresponding period last year. This is for the second consecutive month that Indicas volumes have shot up by more than 50 per cent. For the period April-September 2001, Telco sold 27,535 units of Indica, up by 10 per cent over the corresponding period last year.

Black September has also caught colour TV manufacturers where it hurts most. After growing by 18 per cent and 21 per cent in July and August 2001 respectively, sales of colour TV sets slowed down to 3 to 4 per cent in September 2001, according to figures provided by the Consumer Electronics and TV Manufacturers Association.

CETMA cited three main reasons for the drop in sales - a sluggish economy, the overall GDP growth rate and inadequate rains in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. The association expects colour TV sales to grow at an average rate of around 10 per cent per month during the peak months of October, November and December 2001, also known as the festival season. It also expects the full-year sales growth to average at 5 per cent. But in value terms, growth is expected to be in the vicinity of around 1 to 2 per cent.


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Car, television sales plunge