Maruti's sales spurt 23 per cent in June

Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, India's biggest-selling auto maker, on Wednesday announced a 23 per cent rise in vehicle sales in June, boosted by its highest-ever monthly exports. Total sales in the past month climbed to 75,109 vehicles from 61,247 a year earlier, the Indian unit of Suzuki Motor Corp said in a statement.

The figure included local sales of 61,773 vehicles, a 9.5 per cent rise from the year earlier. The company's exports surged to 13,336 vehicles in June from 4,836 a year earlier as it shipped more A-Star small cars to Europe, particularly to Germany, the UK, the Netherlands, Spain and France. Cumulative exports of the A-Star have crossed 45,000 units since the car was introduced last January, Maruti said.

Maruti also introduced the Ritz in May - its seventh small car model - as it tries to maintain market leadership amid intensifying competition from Fiat SpA, Honda Motor Co and General Motors Corp.

Sales of the entry-level M800 continued to decline in June, posting a 54.5 per cent drop to 2,438 units. Sales of the Alto, Wagon-R, Swift, A-Star and Ritz hatchbacks gained 22 per cent to 46,156 units, while sales of the Swift Dzire and SX4 sedans rose 5 per cent to 6,099 units.

Maruti's total sales in the April-June quarter grew 18 per cent to 226,729 vehicles. The government's recent fiscal stimulus measures have helped the company overcome the recent slump in auto sales.

"This month's export numbers are the highest-ever monthly export volume in the company's history," Maruti's statement said.