The festive season has begun and Indian carmakers are launching cars one after the other to cash in on the demand. With 13 launches scheduled for the month of September (including variant launches) the stage had been set up for a surge in demand. But, the rising fuel prices, depreciating rupee and other economic challenges seem to have dampened the spirits.
Overall car sales have still grown in September compared to August with a majority of the carmakers showing positive growth. Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai, Mahindra and Tata are in green while Toyota and Honda have slipped into the red. The sales numbers are fairly steady across models, well within the standard deviation.
Amongst the newcomers, the Ford Freestyle seems to have steadied itself between 2200 and 2500 units a month while the just-launched Aspire should post inspiring numbers in October. Sales of the Figo hatchback have been reduced to a trickle and we do not have an official comment yet on whether it is due to the Figo facelift which is in the making or because the Freestyle has cannibalised it.
Mahindra’s Marazzo MPV is growing in numbers, thus helping the Indian SUV-maker go past Tata to become the third largest car-seller in September 2018. We also have the Mahindra adaptation of the G5 Rexton expected in October and should be able to boost Mahindra sales further.
Not to be left too far behind, Tata Motors will launch the Tigor facelift in October and probably the enthusiast-focused Tiago JTP as well. We haven’t got the individual numbers for the Tiago and the NRG to check how the NRG has turned out for Tata and if it has been able to target the Celerio X buyers. The Toyota Yaris sales are taking a hit with the numbers falling into three-figures in September.
With another slew of launches in October and the festive season gaining momentum after Dussehra and with the fuel prices being reined in, we will have to see if October has some fireworks in store for us!