Worst-ever decline in auto sales in 2019: SIAM

As per the latest data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the automobile industry recorded its worst-ever sales decline in two decades in 2019, with an unprecedented slowdown hampering vehicle offtake across segments.

According to SIAM all vehicle segments reported de-growth last year as low consumer sentiments, weak rural demand and economic slowdown took toll on demand.

Overall wholesale of vehicles during the year across categories, including passenger vehicles, two-wheelers and commercial vehicles, saw a decline of 13.77 per cent in 2019 at 2,30,73,438 units as against 2,67,58,787 units in 2018. This is the worst fall in sales since the industry body started recording monthly and yearly sales data in 1997. The previous lowest was recorded in 2007 when overall sales had declined by 1.44 per cent.

Similarly, total passenger vehicle sales during 2019 declined by 12.75 per cent to 29,62,052 units as compared with 33,94,790 units a year ago. This is the worst performance in the segment since 2013 when sales witnessed a dip of 7.49 per cent.

Two-wheeler sales also saw a dip of 14.19 per cent last year to 1,85,68,280 units as compared with 2,16,40,033 units in 2018. Likewise, total commercial vehicles saw a dip of 14.99 per cent to 8,54,759 units as against 10,05,502 units in 2018.

The auto industry body also said the positive sentiment that was witnessed during the festive season has not sustained with retail sales in December coming back to negative. In December, domestic passenger vehicle sales declined 1.24 per cent to 2,35,786 units in December from 2,38,753 units in the year-ago period.Domestic car sales were down 8.4 per cent to 1,42,126 units as against 1,55,159 units in December 2018, according to SIAM.

Motorcycle sales last month declined 12.01 per cent to 6,97,819 units as against 7,93,042 units a year earlier. Total two-wheeler sales in December declined 16.6 per cent to 10,50,038 units compared to 12,59,007 units in the year-ago month.

In two-wheeler segment, Hero MotoCorp posted a decline of 5.63 per cent at 4,12,009 units in December. Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) saw its sales drop by 2.26 per cent at 2,30,197 units, while TVS Motor Co witnessed a decline of 25.09 per cent at 1,57,244 units.

Sales of commercial vehicles were down 12.32 per cent to 66,622 units in December, SIAM data showed. Vehicle sales across categories registered a decline of 13.08 per cent to 14,05,776 units from 16,17,398 units in December 2018, it added.

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