The domestic automobile industry started the new year on a high with car sales growing by 26.3% at a record 184,332 units, the highest ever in a month eclipsing the previous record set only three months ago.
The overall industry growth rate however moderated to a more amenable 18.7% at 1.3 million units — a trend which the industry expects to impact car sales in the coming months.
In October 2010, 182,992 cars were sold (the previous highest monthly sales), the overall industry growth was 45%.
A number of carmakers including market-leader Maruti Suzuki, General Motors, Hyundai Motor India and Mahindra&Mahindra have already warned that the high growth rates seen in 2010 are unsustainable.
In January 2011, Maruti Suzuki was the pick of the lot with domestic sales of 86,285 units, a year-on-year growth of 26.2%. Arch rivals Hyundai and Tata Motors had more modest growth of 2.4% and 13.4% respectively during the month.
Two-wheeler sales, which constitute almost 75% of total automobile sales in the country, increased by 17.6% to 9,80,752 units from 834,343 units in January 2010. Motorcycle sales rose 14.9% and scooter sales grew by 29.6%.
The sales of trucks and buses reported the slowest growth during the month at 60,753 units, up 12.6% over last year. Heavy commercial vehicles slithered to single digits at 6.6% growth, but an 18% light commercial vehicle sales boosted overall numbers.