The domestic passenger car market recorded a historic 22.66% growth in April-December, 2006, second only to the 28.56% in fiscal 2003-04. Analysts believe the industry will close fiscal 2006-07 with around 22-23% growth, against just 16% in 2005-06. In the first nine months of 2006-07, the industry sold 0.765 Million units, against 0.623 Million in the same period last fiscal. With the launch of new model by different players the industry is expected to maintain its growth momentum through the remaining three months.
A slew of new launches and attractive discounts by leading carmakers helped the market grow at an explosive rate. The pace of growth was led mainly by compact car models such as the Maruti Alto, the Wagon-R, the Hyundai Santro, the Tata Indica and its newly launched variant, the 1.2-litre Xeta. In the mid-size segment, Honda’s popular City and Civic together topped volume growth with total sales of 29,527 units, up 14% over 25,894 units in the same period last year. Other models that did well include the Ford Fiesta, Maruti Esteem and Indigo family from Tata Motors.
Attractive discounts by carmakers helped the passenger car market cruise ahead in December. Domestic car sales during the month stood at 81,026 units, up 23.04%, against 65,853 units in the same period last year. Total passenger vehicle sales (including sports and multi-utility vehicles) during this period stood at 0.977 million units, up 20.76% over the same period last year.
Though the Automobile manufacturing lags behind its other Asian counterparts, but with rising incomes and huge middle class, vehicle production will gain momentum and will present a lucrative market for automotive glass manufacturers.