Car sales up 12.87% in Dec, two-wheelers decline

Domestic passenger car sales rose 12.87 per cent to 1,72,671 units in December from 1,52,986 units in the same month a year ago.

Motorcycle sales declined 5.93 per cent to 7,24,807 units last month from 7,70,519 units a year ago, according to the data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).

Total two-wheeler sales in December declined 3.10 per cent to 11,67,633 units as against 12,04,942 units in the same month last year.

Sales of commercial vehicles were up 11.45 per cent to 56,840 units in December 2015, SIAM said.

Vehicle sales across categories registered a marginal decline to 15,02,314 units from 15,04,944 units in December 2014, it added.

Indian car market leader Maruti Suzuki and closest rival Hyundai Motor saw robust growth in December on the back of good sales of models like Maruti's Baleno and Creta and Hyndai's Grand i10.

Utility vehicles leader Mahindra & Mahindra managed to stay in positive territory despite several of its models being impacted by ban on sales of diesel cars in Delhi / NCR.

Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) said its domestic sales rose by 13.5 per cent during the month to 1,11,333 units as against 98,109 units in December 2014.

Sales of the company's small cars, including Alto and WagonR, rose by 7.5 per cent to 37,234 units compared with 34,625 units in the year-ago month.

Dispatches in the compact segment comprising Swift, Estilo, Ritz, Dzire and the recently launched Baleno rose by 14 per cent to 47,354 units during the last month.

Utility vehicles sales, including models like Ertiga and S-Cross, rose by 58.8 per cent to 9,168 units during the month.

The company posted a record 14 lakh total sales in 2015, its highest ever in a calendar year.

"CY 2015 was a year of transformation for Maruti Suzuki. The company set up premium channel Nexa for new products like S-Cross and Baleno and launched hybrid Ciaz and Ertiga... stepped up customer safety and strengthened its market share to over 47 per cent," MSI executive director R S Kalsi said.

Hyundai Motor India saw its monthly domestic sales rise to 41,861 units last month compared with 32,504 units in December 2014, up 28.78 per cent.

HMIL senior vice-president (sales and marketing) Rakesh Srivastava said the growth in December was driven by "strong performance of Grand i10, Elite i20 and Creta".

He said that in terms of calendar year domestic sales, the company achieved an all-time high of 4,76,001 units with a cumulative growth of 15.7 per cent.

Mahindra's domestic sales were up 1 per cent to 34,839 units last month as against 34,460 units in December 2014.

"In spite of a challenging external environment, we at Mahindra have closed December on a positive note," M&M chief executive (automotive division) Pravin Shah said.

Ford India's domestic sales were at 5,924 units last month, up 57.8 per cent from 3,754 units a year ago.

Commenting on the calender year performance, Ford India, executive director of marketing, sales and service, Anurag Mehrotra said 2015 was a good year for Ford.

"We launched our new plant in Sanand, strengthened our product portfolio with the launch of Aspire and Figo, increased our exports, expanded our sales and service network including parts distributors across the country and welcomed more employees and customers to the Ford family," he said.

In 2016, the company will continue to bring great products that customers want and value, Mehrotra added.