At a time where the passenger vehicle (PV) segment registered its worst ever sales in eight years in April 2019, there are some outstanding performances as well. Launched in January 2010, the Maruti Suzuki Eeco lately got updated with additional safety features. Last month, it managed to register its best ever sales with 10,25 units while the previous best sale was recorded in March 2019 with 9,893 units. A total of 5,74,160 units of the Maruti Eeco has been sold by the end of April 2019 whereas it had crossed the milestone of 5 lakh units in October 2018.
The utility vehicle (UV) segment with the support of popular names like Maruti Vitara Brezza and the Hyundai Creta gets a bit of relief in industry, which is suffering from several worrisome factors like weak buyer sentiment, low industrial production, low liquidity in rural areas and shortage of working capital as well. Other than this, the shared mobility also impacted the segment with slowing down the purchase of new vehicles in urban areas and lowering the ownership of multiple vehicles in a single household.
We can consider the impact of slowdown with the sales of top selling PVs in the country. They cumulatively clocked the sales of 1,38,294 units in April 2019 as against to 1,61,299 units sold in April 2018. It calculates as a downfall of 14 per cent on year on year basis. Let’s check how these best sellers performed in this competitive market environment.
Maruti Alto, which always tops the chart maintained its top position with the sales of 22,766 units. It registered a growth of 7 per cent over 21,233 units sold in April 2018. The most popular hatch lately got updated with a mid-life makeover including added safety features, a bit of designing changes to comply with the crash test norms and an improved BS-6 compliant 799cc petrol engine.
Maruti Dzire that is a popular compact sedan from the manufacturer gets the second position with a crucial drop of 29 per cent in year on year sales. It indexed 18,544 buyers in April 2019 as compared to 25,935 units sold in April 2018. The car which usually on sale with a waiting period is now available with a fair discount in time due to poor demand for PVs in Indian industry.
Another offering from Maruti, the Baleno stands at the third spot. It is a premium hatchback that managed to found 17,355 homes in April 2019. As compared to 20,412 units sale in April month last year, it witnessed a downfall of 15 per cent however its ranking has improved by one position.
The Maruti Swift, on the other hand, with sales of 15,776 units gets No. 4 in the top ten rankings of cars in April 2019. As compared to March month, the premium hatchback drops by two positions. Not even this, the Ford Figo and the Hyundai Grand i10 sale also recorded a dip of 30 per cent as compared to the 22,776 units sold in April last year.
The Vitara Brezza also posts a positive sales of 8.9 per cent from 10,801 units during April 2018 to 11,785 units in April 2019. As of now, there is only a 1.3 diesel motor option for the Brezza which also expected to discontinue in coming months. While the company’s announcement of phasing out diesels from April 2020 indicates that the 1.5 DDiS diesel motor may not be provided with the compact SUV. That’s why Maruti is working on the development of a petrol engine for the Brezza.
the Maruti Wagon R with the sale of 11,306 units stands at No. 6. It is a decrement of 31 per cent in generated volumes as compared to 16,561 units in April 2018. The Wagon R competes with the Tata Tiago, Hyundai Santro and its own cousin in the segment. It comes featured with reverse parking sensors, ABS with EBD and dual-channel ABS as standard fitment across trims. Moreover, an option of petrol-CNG bi-fuel is also available for the Wagon R.
Popular SUV from Hyundai, the Creta jumps three positions to stand at No. 7 in April 219. It manages to find 10,487 homes with a rise of 11.6 per cent over last April, which stood at 9,390 units.
Hyundai Elite i20 that is premium hatchback from Korean carmaker stood at No. 8 in April 2019. The hatchback which did not match up with carmaker’s expectations registered a drop of 16 per cent with sale close at 10,411 units as against to 12,369 units in April 2018.
The Maruti Eeco takes ninth place in this bestsellers list with 10,254 sold out units. It is a value for money van and still popular for its use in commercial purposes like ferrying school kids. The Hyundai Grand i10 with 9,610 units sales gets the least position in the bestsellers list. The vehicle registered a significant downfall of 21 per cent over 12,174 units sales in April 2018. An all-new Grand i10 from Hyundai stable is slated to launch in October 2019.
With the continuous fall in the performance of some of the most popular car brands, it is clear that the Indian automotive industry is going through a very challenging phase. The dealer inventories are saying a different story and discount to clear that outstanding stock has become a regular trend from the last six to eight months in a row. While, the experts believes that the Industry will emerge once again in Q2 FY 2020 (July-September 2019) with a sort of stability in the country’s political environment, While the industry is hopeful of recovery in Q2 FY 2020 (July-September 2019) once some stability has been regained in the country’s political environment, however, the situation will continue to remain grim on the ground for a little while longer.