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October car sales IANS

Indian automobile companies reported a flat-to-positive sales growth during October, as high fuel and interest costs along with a late festive season dented buyers' sentiments.

On Thursday, automobile major Maruti Suzuki India reported that its overall sales, including exports for October, inched up by 0.2 percent to 146,766 units from 146,446 units sold in the year-ago period.

In the domestic market, it sold 138,100 units during October, up by 1.5 per cent from 136,000 units sold in the corresponding month in 2017.

However, the carmaker exported 8,666 units, registering a decline of 17 per cent from 10,466 units shipped out in the year-ago month.

On the other hand, the Hyundai Motor India reported a 4.6 per cent rise in its overall sales, including exports, for the month of October 2018.

According to the company, the overall sales rose to 65,020 units from 62,139 units sold during the corresponding period of 2017.

It reported a 4.9 per cent rise in its domestic sales to 52,001 units from 49,588 units, while the exports grew by 3.7 per cent to 13,019 units from 12,551 units.

"Hyundai achieved the highest-ever domestic sales with 52,001 units and a growth of 4.9 per cent, on the strong demand pull created by the blockbuster launch of India's favourite family car - the all-new Santro, improving customers sentiments and setting new benchmark in the industry," said Vikas Jain, National Sales Head, Hyundai Motor India.

Similarly, commercial and passenger vehicles maker Tata Motors' domestic sales grew during the month under review. It rose by 18 per cent last month over the corresponding period of 2017.

Total domestic sales in October stood at 57,710 units, against 48,886 units sold during the corresponding month last year.

The company attributed the rise in sales to the strong performance of its commercial and passenger vehicles business in the domestic market.

"October 2018 was yet another month wherein Tata Motors outstripped the industry growth. While the industry grew at 2 per cent, Tata Motors saw a robust growth of 11 per cent," said Mayank Pareek, President, Passenger Vehicles Business Unit, Tata Motors.

"We are therefore pleased to sustain positive traction despite strong headwinds such as the hike in fuel prices, higher interest rates and increase in insurance premium."

Another automobile major Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) reported a 14 per cent rise in its overall sales, including exports, in October 2018.

As per the company data, the overall sales during the month under review grew to 58,416 vehicles from 51,160 vehicles sold in October 2017.

"For past few months, the automotive industry has been witnessing subdued retail sales for passenger vehicles segment, because of low consumer buying sentiment," said Rajan Wadhera, President, Automotive Sector, M&M.

"Therefore, one has to remain cautious on how the festive season, ultimately, turns out to be."

Commercial vehicles major Ashok Leyland closed October 2018 with a 17 per cent growth in sales.

In a statement, the company said it sold 15,149 units last month, up from 12,944 units sold in October 2017.

Additionally, two- and three-wheeler maker TVS Motor Company sold 398,427 vehicles in October, an on-year rise of about 26 per cent.

The company had sold 317,411 units in October last year.

In the two-wheeler segment -- Suzuki Motorcycle India's domestic sales rose 34.13 per cent to 61,768 units in October 2018, as compared to 46,048 units last year.

Two-wheeler major Hero MotoCorp said that it despatched 734,668 units of motorcycles and scooters in October 2018, which represents a growth of 16.4 per cent over the corresponding month of the previous fiscal, when the company had sold 631,105 units.