Domestic car sales up 14.76% in June; commercial vehicles yet to perk up

Domestic passenger car sales rose 14.76 per cent last month to 1.6 lakh units over the same month a year ago, according to data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).

This marks the second consecutive month of rise in car sales which rose 3.08 per cent, for the first time in 15 months in May. The acceleration in growth rate shows positive consumer sentiment.

“This was the highest-ever June sales and we hope the trend of double-digit growth going forward,” Vishnu Mathur, director general, SIAM, told reporters.

Total passenger vehicles sales also grew 11 per cent to 2.19 lakh units in June from 1.97 lakh units in the year-ago period.

Two-wheeler sales in June increased 12.99 per cent to 12.6 lakh units from the year-ago period. Of this, motorcycle sales increased 9.63 per cent to 8.7 lakh units from 7.99 lakh units a year earlier. This means the growth in two-wheelers was led by scooters.

However, commercial vehicle sales, seen as barometer of business sentiments, continued to slid and fell 9.03 per cent year-on-year to 51,119 units last month, its 20th straight month of decline. Total sales of commercial vehicles in May were down 15.28 per cent to 46,986 units compared with 55,458 units in the year-ago period. 

This shows the pace of decline is slowing down and may yet turn around before the end of the year.

Across categories, vehicle sales rose 12.15 cent to 15.78 lakh units from 14.07 lakh units in June 2013.

In the interim Budget in February this year, former finance minister P Chidambaram had cut excise duty for small cars, scooters, motorcycles and commercial vehicles to 8 per cent from 12 per cent. Also, taxes were pruned from 30 per cent to 24 per cent for SUVs; from 24 per cent to 20 per cent for mid-sized cars and from 27 per cent to 24 per cent for large cars.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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