Auto sales down for 11 months in a row, FM promises more steps
New Delhi/Pune: The pain of auto sector continued for the eleventh straight month, despite the onset of festival season as overall sales declined 22.4%, heaping more pressure on the sector reeling from impact of a demand slowdown.
The auto industry, however, said there were early signs of some improvement and the full festival season along with discounts and measures announced by the government will help improve sentiment in the sector.
In Pune, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman acknowledged the slowdown and Change (%) in sales in Sept 2019 over Sept 2018
said the government, if needed, would unveil more measures to help the auto sector.
“I have been interacting with auto sector (representatives) from all over the country... Most of their suggestions have been responded to and if there are any more, they are always welcome to tell me. Consumer demand has not revived in the automobile sector. If the sector wants something, the representatives can always reach out to me,” FM told reporters.
September witnessed motorcycles sales declining to the lowest-ever level in over two decades, while commercial vehicle sales also dropped the worst since January 2009. Motorcycle sales in September declined 23.3% to 10.4 lakh units as against 13.6 lakh units a year earlier. Total twowheeler sales in September declined 22.1% to 16.6 lakh units compared to 21.3 lakh units in the year-ago month.
Sales of commercial vehicles were down over 39% to 58,419 units in September compared with 95,870 units in the same period of last year, the data showed.
SIAM President Rajan Wadehra said the worst may be over for the sector as the industry has witnessed higher footfalls and greater sales conversion in recent days. He added that all indicators pointed out towards sales picking up even in the rural areas as bumper crop is expected in regions which were not impacted by the floods this monsoon. “We are very hopeful that things will improve from here on,” he said.