New Delhi: Car sales in India grew 13.11 percent to 2,11,402 units in February as customers rushed to buy vehicles fearing rise in prices post the Union Budget, to be presented this week.
"People are expecting increase in car prices after the Budget as the government may roll back two percent excise concession given as stimulus during the 2008-9 slowdown," SIAM Director General Vishnu Mathur told reporters.
He further said there is also an apprehension in the market that diesel cars may cost more after the Budget as additional taxes may be imposed on them.
"So, the growth witnessed in February was primarily driven by customer's advancing their purchases ahead of the Budget," he said, adding that there were also a lot of discounts being offered, mainly on petrol vehicles.
According to the figures released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) Monday, domestic passenger car sales grew 13.11 percent to 2,11,402 units in February against 1,86,890 units in the year-ago period.
During February, the country's largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India sold 94,118 vehicles, a jump of 7.13 percent, over the same period last year.
Rival Hyundai Motor India's sales grew by 12.78 percent to 36,658 units, while Tata Motors' sales increased by 5.46 percent to 28,236 units.
Commenting on the market sentiments, Mathur said, "There has been an improvement as consumers are no longer expecting increase in interest rates."
This is the first time ever that the monthly car sales crossed the two lakh units mark, he added.
According to SIAM, total two-wheeler sales in February 2012 increased by 11.96 percent to 11,44,500 units, from 10,22,226 units in the same period of previous year.
Motorcycle sales in the country during the month grew by 8.01 percent to 8,38,193 units, from 7,76,005 units in the same month last year.
Market leader Hero MotoCorp witnessed a growth of 9.55 percent at 4,70,994 units compared to the same month a year ago, SIAM said.
Rival Bajaj Auto's sales decreased marginally by 0.59 percent to 2,03,919 units from the same month last year.
Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) saw its bike sales going up by 39.05 percent to 75,110 units.
However, TVS Motor Company posted a decline of 6.8 percent in its sales at 49,067 units compared to year-ago month.
Scooter sales grew 27.99 percent to 2,37,374 units in February, as against 1,85,460 units in the year-ago period, SIAM said.
The growth in the segment was led by HMSI with a jump of 55.41 percent at 1,22,386 units during last month.
TVS Motor's scooter sales were at 34,796 units, a decrease of 8.7 percent, while that of Hero MotoCorp went up by 19.49 percent to 39,464 units.
Total sales of commercial vehicles during February this year jumped by 18.7 percent to 76,891 units from 64,775 units in the year-ago period, SIAM said.
Light commercial vehicle sales rose by 31.02 percent last month to 43,982 units from 33,568 units in the same month in 2011. Medium and heavy commercial vehicle sales were up 5.45 percent at 32,909 units during the month from 31,207 units in the year-ago period, it added.
Three-wheeler sales during February 2012 were down 13.57 percent to 42,242 units compared to 48,878 units in the year ago period, SIAM said.
In February 2012, total sale of vehicles across categories registered a growth of 12.06 percent to 15,33,474 units in February 2012, as against 13,68,370 units in the same month of 2011.
First Published: Monday, March 12, 2012, 10:42