Passenger car sales up 9.48 percent in September: SIAM

New Delhi, Oct 9 (IANS) New launches and positive consumer sentiment during festive season coupled with lower fuel prices gave a boost last month to domestic passenger car sales which grew by 9.48 percent, industry data showed on Friday.

According to data furnished by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), passenger car sales during September stood at 169,590 units against 154,898 units in the like month of the previous year.

The data revealed that the total passenger vehicle sales, which includes cars, utility vehicles and vans, went up by 3.84 percent to 232,167 units from 223,584 units sold in September, 2014.

However, sales of utility vehicles fell by 8.56 percent to 48,464 units. The off-take of vans, too, receded by 10.01 percent to 14,113 units.

The industry data for last month showed a 12.07 percent growth in the overall commercial vehicles segment sales, which is a key indicator of economic activity.

The commercial vehicles segment off-take for September stood at 62,845 units from 56,078 units sold during the corresponding month of 2014.

On the other hand, sales of three-wheelers receded by 13.04 percent in the month under review at 49,524 units from 56,078 units sold in September of 2014.

A downward trend was also seen in the sales of two-wheelers last month. Two-wheelers sales slipped by 1.06 percent to 1,537,137 units from 1,553,608 units sold in the like month of 2014.

Bucking the trend for the two-wheeler industry, scooter off-take in September was up 6.54 percent at 462,341 units. However, motorcycle sales slipped by 2.87 percent at 1,020,237 units.

Moped sales plunged by 21.20 percent at 54,559 units.

Exports for the month under review were higher by 3.54 percent at 343,125 units sold abroad from 331,397 units shipped out during September, 2014.

Notwithstanding sales abroad, total automobile sales in September were marginally lower by 0.45 percent at 1,881,673 units from 1,890,218 units sold in the corresponding month of 2014.

Furthermore, SIAM came out with the second quarter (Q2) sales figures, which showed that passenger vehicles off-take went up by six percent to 677,000 units from 637,000 units sold in the Q2 of 2014-15.

The industry data for the Q2 showed a nine percent growth in the overall commercial vehicles segment sales which stood at 167,000 units from 152,000 units sold during the corresponding period of last fiscal.

On the other hand, the sales of three-wheelers receded by 13 percent in the quarter under review at 141,000 units from 161,000 units sold in Q2 of 2014.

Two-wheelers sales slipped by one percent to 4,143,000 units from 4,198,000 units sold in the like period of 2014.

The industry body predicted that sales could revive on the back of higher discounts propped-up due to lower commodity prices, positive consumer sentiment, new launches and increased disposable incomes.

SIAM added that lending rates are expected to further decrease, after the Reserve Bank of India on September 29 slashed key lending rates by 50 basis points.

SIAM data revelled that interest rates across public and private sector banks coupled with non-banking financial institutions (NBFCs) stood between 10.8 to 14.3 percent for car loans.

Interest rates on commercial vehicle loans ranged between 12.5 to 17 percent in September 2015.

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