The growing demand for SUVs in the country seems to have taken its toll on the sales of MPVs. According the latest data released by the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI), Honda Car India didn't produce the Mobilio MPV in the month of October due to poor demand. This, despite the fact that October falls in the festive, season where sales are usually higher.
The MPV was launched just six month ago, and the demand has shrunken after the initial excitement. This is also the case with Renault, which produced just one unit of Lodgy MPV in October. The model was launched in April this year and finds it difficult to seek takers.
Industry sources said there was a huge inventory of these models at dealerships, which led the companies to halt their production. The average monthly sales of Mobilio have fallen to 890 units at present against 3,800 units last year. Renault Lodgy sales are around 800 units a month.
These are not the only MPVs experiencing a sale slowdown. Bestselling MPVs Toyota Innova and Maruti Suzuki Ertiga have also seen fall in sales from 6,500 units earlier to 4,500-5,000 units in recent months. Other players in the segment — Chevrolet Tavera, Enjoy and Mahindra Xylo — have also experienced a significant drop in sales.
"The MPV space in India is shrinking because intra-city movement of people is not growing," Renault India Managing Director Sumit Sawhney told the Economic Times.
However, the scene is expected to change with new entries such as the upcoming Hyundai MPV and Honda BR-V in 2016.