The Indian auto industry has recorded its highest-ever May wholesales of domestic passenger vehicles (PVs) at 334,802 units amid better semiconductor chip supply and high demand for sport utility vehicles (SUVs).
The previous May peak was observed in 2018 when the domestic PV wholesales stood at 301,238 units, said Shashank Srivastava, senior executive officer, marketing & sales, Maruti Suzuki India.
He said bookings have been going up during the last one year as chip shortage had affected production. “The chip supply situation has become better so a lot of these pending bookings have been cleared,” he added.
However, he clarified that production of some models —Ertiga, XL6, Brezza, Grand Vitara and Fronx — continue to be affected due to chip shortage and the supply situation is expected to be better in Q2 of FY24. “We have increased the production of PVs that are not affected by chip shortage,” he said. Maruti’s domestic PV wholesales jumped 15.45 per cent year-on-year in May to 143,708 units.
“For us (Maruti), the SUV’s share in our total sales has gone up from 12 per cent in May last year to about 21 per cent in May this year,” he said. In May, SUVs comprised 46.5 per cent of the auto industry’s total domestic sales.
The domestic auto industry’s bookings rose 10 per cent in May year-on-year, while the number of enquiries jumped 17 per cent in May year-on-year.
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The network stock (with dealers) is of about 26 days, which is still below the pre-pandemic average of about 30 days. “The wholesales will continue to be more than retail sales till the network stock reaches the pre-pandemic average,” he noted.
Hyundai’s domestic PV sales jumped 14.91 per cent year-on-year in May to 48,601 units. The company’s chief operating officer (COO) Tarun Garg said the company’s growth in May has been fuelled by two SUVs — Creta and Venue. He added that the newly launched Verna has clocked strong numbers.
Mahindra & Mahindra sold 32,886 units in May, posting a year-on-year growth of 22.23 per cent. “We continue our growth trend, backed by strong demand for SUVs... The sales volume for SUVs and Pik-Ups were restricted by a short-term disruption in engine-related parts at the suppliers’ end. The semiconductor supply constraints on specific parts such as Air Bag ECU (electronic control unit), continued during the month too,” Veejay Nakra, president, automotive division, Mahindra & Mahindra.
Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) doubled the domestic sales to 20,410 units in May. Atul Sood, vice-president, sales and strategic marketing, TKM, said the company had scaled a new high by reporting the highest monthly sales performance of 20,410 units. “We recently enhanced our production by implementing the third-shift of operations at our Bidadi plant from May 2023, which has greatly contributed to addressing the market’s needs,” he added.
TVS Motors’ domestic two-wheeler sales increased from 191,482 units in May 2022 to 252,690 units. Bajaj Auto’s domestic sales doubled from May last year to May this year.