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Published on: July 13, 2020, 10:23 a.m.
Road to recovery
  • Vehicle sales in June 2020 are raising hopes for a revival

By S.M. Boothem

From almost no sales recorded in April 2020, automotive companies have announced their June 2020 sales figures, which show that the industry is slowly limping back to normal after the lockdown due to COVID-19. In spite of supply chain constraints, the two-wheeler companies – Hero MotoCorp, Honda Motorcycle, TVS Motor, Bajaj Auto and Royal Enfield – have declared decent sales numbers. Sales of passenger vehicles (PVs) and tractors are also slowly picking up. 

Hero MotoCorp led the revival of the domestic two-wheeler sector in June with a sales figure of 4,50,744 units. “Sales of over 4.5 lakh two-wheelers in a highly disrupted month are a clear signal of the resilience of the Indian economy which is able to revive in the face of any adversity. This has vindicated our strong belief in the robust fundamentals of the Indian economy.

A major part of market demand emanates from rural and semi-urban markets, which have been helped to a large extent by the various stimulus packages rolled out by the government,” said Pawan Munjal, chairman & CEO, Hero MotoCorp.

Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt Ltd (HMSI) sold 2,02,837 units in June. “Around 95 per cent of Honda dealers resumed their business, while our supply chain further stabilised to align with the rebooting of our production operations in all four plants. With an over 150 per cent spike in our retails, June turned out to be the first confidence booster. We are also witnessing a new demand being unlocked, with people preferring personal mobility over public transport and two-wheelers becoming the first choice in the shift to this market,” said Yadvinder Singh Guleria, director, sales & marketing, HMSI. 

Rural demand TVS Motor registered sales of 144,817 units in June 2020. According to company officials, the market is opening up gradually post the lockdown, and is witnessing a positive uptake in both domestic and export markets. Bajaj Auto sold 1,46,695 units in June, followed by Royal Enfield with sales of 36,510 motorcycles.

In the PV segment, Maruti Suzuki registered sales of 52,300 units in June 2020, followed by Hyundai India with 21,320 units. Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) sold 8,075 units. “The automotive industry has started to see recovery both in the passenger and small commercial vehicle segments. This has been led primarily by rising rural demand and movement of essential goods across the country. Our key brands such as Bolero, Scorpio and Pik-Ups, are all seeing good traction.

Managing the supply chain will be our key focus area as we ramp up production to meet this increased demand,” said Veejay Nakra, CEO, Automotive Division, M&M. Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) sold a total of 3,866 units. Commenting on the sales growth, Naveen Soni, senior vice president, sales & service, TKM, said: “With demand gradually returning in the market and with strong support from our dealer partners, we have been able to keep up with customer expectations. We are also seeing a visible growth in online enquiries as well as bookings.”

Kia Motors India clocked sales of 7,275 units in June 2020, indicating recovery in a challenging environment. “While the pandemic refuses to subside, the country is somehow trying to sustain and prepare itself to live with the effects of COVID-19. The last few months have been testing for consumers as well as the industry. The COVID-19 and lockdown constraints limited our sales this month, but we are sure of delivering many more cars to our customers in July,” said Kookhyun Shim, MD and CEO, Kia Motors India. MG Motor India has recorded sales of 2,012 units.

In the tractor segment, M&M sold 35,844 units. “We have sold 35,844 tractors in the domestic market during June 2020, a growth of 12 per cent over last year. This is our second highest June sales ever. The timely arrival of the southwest monsoon, combined with the benefits of a record rabi crop, government support for agri-initiatives and very good progress in the sowing of the kharif crop have led to positive sentiments among farmers. It is expected that this demand will continue to remain buoyant in the coming months,” said Hemant Sikka, President, Farm Equipment Sector, M&M.

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