Continuing the growth momentum, the auto sector posted robust numbers in the month of May, with overall sales growing 12.13 per cent, fuelled by new launches, higher infrastructure expenditure, positive monsoon outlook and pickup in rural sales.

The sales growth in May 2018, however, is a reflection of low numbers in the same month last year, due to slowdown ahead of GST rollout and pre-buying, owing to BS IV implementation in April 2017.

While the passenger vehicle segment grew 19.65 per cent in May to 301,238 units riding on new launches from the house of Honda and Toyota, the total commercial vehicle sales stood at 76,478 units during the month, up by 43.06 per cent.

Sales from the newly launched Toyota Yaris added to the spike in May’s passenger car numbers.

In May last year, the passenger vehicle sale stood at 251,764 units and commercial vehicle sale was at 53,457 units.

As per Society of Automobile Manufacturers Association (SIAM), heavy discounts on BS III models before the announcement of implementation of BS VI from April 1, 2017, led to pre-buying in March, especially in commercial vehicle and two-wheeler space, thereby killing the number post March.

Besides, in anticipation that GST implementation from July 1 will lower down car prices, consumers postponed their sales, which also led to low base in May and June, said Vishnu Mathur, Director General at SIAM.

Sales from the newly launched Toyota Yaris and Honda Amaze besides highest numbers from largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki added to the spike in May’s passenger car numbers, which saw sales of 199,479 units last month as against 166,732 units in May 2017.

The exports of passenger cars, however declined marginally by 1.69 per cent to 44,904 units compared to 57,657 units in the year ago month.

Maruti Suzuki sold 1,61,497 units in May led by popular models such as Swift, Celerio, Ignis, Baleno and Dzire, while Honda Cars sales grew 41 per cent to 15,864 units on the back of the new Amaze launch in May clocking sales of 9,789 units during the month.

Tata Motors, which is riding on the success of Tiago and Nexon, saw its domestic sales growing 61 percent in the PV portfolio to 17,489 units.

Hyundai Motor India (HMIL) reported a decent 7.14 per cent increase in its domestic sales of 45,008 units in May 2018 against 42,007 units in the same month during the previous fiscal.

Rakesh Srivastava, Director – Sales and Marketing, HMIL attributed the sales growth momentum to its power brands the Creta, Elite i20, Grand i10 and the next Gen Verna.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) sold a total of 13,113 units in May backed by newly launched Yaris and popular models such as Fortuner and Innova.

N Raja, Deputy Managing Director, TKM said: “Along with the Fortuner and Innova Crysta, Yaris has been a significant contributor to the overall positive sales growth as compared to the same period last year.”

Sales of utility vehicles grew 17.53 per cent to 82,086 units as against 69,845 in May 2017. The exports also rose 21.23 per cent to 14.492 units in May 2018.

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