Passenger vehicle sales rise 14.4% in Jan, but 2-wheelers, CVs dip

Total vehicle sales in India declined 4.7 per cent in January as two-wheeler makers and commercial vehicle manufacturers grappled with the impact of the government's demonetisation drive.

Total sales dropped to 16.2 lakh vehicles last month, as two-wheeler sales slumped 7.4 per cent to 12.62 lakh units, according to the data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM). Commercial vehicle sales dipped 0.7 per cent to 61,239 units.

Passenger vehicle demand was resilient, with sales rising 14.4 per cent to 2.65 lakh units. Exports meanwhile declined 7.7 per cent to 2.55 lakh vehicles.

''Rural sales of vehicles will take longer to stabilise due to a large portion of cash purchases,'' Vishnu Mathur, the director general of SIAM told reporters in a press conference in New Delhi.

The auto industry lobby expects advance booking for commercial vehicles during February and March, as new BS-IV emission norms are scheduled to come into force from 1 April 2017.

''We are disappointed that a scheme on fleet modernisation didn't figure in the Union Budget,'' Mathur said. SIAM, however, maintained its forecast for double-digit year-on-year growth in passenger vehicle sales during the next financial year.