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Autos: New year, new high

autos Updated: Feb 01, 2011 22:57 IST
HT Correspondent

Car and two-wheeler sales started the new year on a high, with all major firms posting good growth during January 2011.

Maruti Suzuki India Ltd sold over a lakh cars during the month, almost 25% more in the same period last year. Utility vehicle major Mahindra and Mahindra and Ford India notched up their best ever monthly sales with the latter topping over 10,000 units in a month to become only the fifth vehicle maker in India to achieve that.

“We have carried the momentum of last year’s terrific performance into the new year by crossing the 10,000 unit sales mark,” said Michael Boneham, president, Ford India.

The optimism rubbed off on the two-wheeler industry as well, with all four players who released the sales figures reflecting a high double digit growth. Market leader Hero Honda led from the front with sales of over 4 lakh units, 20% more than last year.

“Our strong sales for January have provided an excellent start to the new year and also helped continue the sales momentum of the last calendar year,” said Anil Dua, senior VP (marketing & sales), Hero Honda Motors Ltd. “This is the ninth consecutive month of four lakh-plus sales, coming on the back of five-lakh plus sales each in October and December 2010.”

Even then, signs of the feared moderation in growth were evident and is expected to play out more in the forthcoming months. The growth itself was not even as Hyundai, General Motors and Honda Siel posting single digit growth while Fiat India saw its sales decline.

“I do expect the industry growth to slow down from here onwards,” said Pawan Goenka, president, automotive sector, Mahindra & Mahindra.