New Delhi: The last month of the 2021-22 financial year ended on a happy note, but not for all players in the sector. Helped by easing supply chains, auto wholesale trade in March mirrored a positive monthly trend for passenger vehicles. Demand remains good, but the problem is long waiting times and delays in delivery to consumers.
Automotive production is expected to be affected for the rest of 2022 due to the semiconductor supply crisis. Experts suggest that the Russian-Ukrainian war and other geopolitical tensions will fuel the crisis, as the two countries are key suppliers of automotive inputs.
For the two-wheeler segment, the rural recovery is still a long way off and the commuter motorcycle market has yet to recover from the second COVID wave. Added to this is the skyrocketing price of fuel which has increased tenfold in the past 12 days by a total of INR 7.20 per litre.
The exceptionally high prices of raw materials, which are at least partially, as claimed by the industry, are passed on to consumers. In the PV segment, Maruti Suzuki is expected to announce a price increase soon, the fifth since January 2021. Others such as Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) and Tata Motors are expected to follow suit. Luxury automakers like Audi and BMW have done this before.
In the two-wheeler segment, Hero MotoCorp announced a hike of INR 2,000 from April 1, followed by Suzuki motorcycles which passed on a 1% to 2% hike to its dealer partners.
At the same time, the utility vehicle and tractor segments are showing signs of recovery.
The following is a report by segment of vehicle shipments to dealerships in March 2022.
While the segment’s two leading automakers, Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai Motors, saw declines, others like Tata Motors, Toyota Kirloskar and Skoda Auto set a record and recorded their highest ever monthly sales in March. 2022.
Domestic sales of Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) fell 8.4% year on year, however, its exports soared 128% to 26,496 units in March 2022 from 11,597 units in March 2021.
Its cars in the mini category like Alto and S-Presso recorded sales of 15,491 units in March this year, compared to 24,653 units in March last year.
Compact class cars including Baleno, Celerio, Dzire, Ignis, Swift, Tour S and WagonR saw marginal growth with sales of 82,314 units in March 2022, compared to 82,201 units in March 2021.
Sales of Maruti Suzuki utility vehicles such as Ertiga, Gypsy, S-Cross, Vitara Brezza, XL6 dropped to 25,001 units in March this year from 26,174 units in March 2021. Eeco van also saw a decline in sales to 9,221 units compared to 11,547 units during the same month last year.
“As the electronics component supply situation continues to be unpredictable, this could also impact production volume in FY23,” the automaker said in a statement.
Tata Motors’ domestic sales, at number 3, included 38,936 units of ICE and 3,357 units of electric cars in March 2022.
Shailesh Chandra, Managing Director of Tata Motors Passenger Vehicles Ltd and Tata Passenger Electric Mobility Ltd, said: “We ended the financial year with the highest monthly sales of 42,293 units, a growth of 43% compared to March. 21 and highest-ever SUV sales of 29,559 units. Electric vehicle sales continued to see rapid demand growth driven by strong acceptance of Nexon EV and Tigor EV.
“Going forward, the situation for semiconductors remains uncertain. We will continue to monitor developments closely and are refining our agile, multi-pronged approach to continue to respond to customer orders,” he said.
Mahindra sales in March 2022 included 27,380 commercial vehicle units and 223 car units.
Veejay Nakra, Managing Director of M&M Ltd’s Automotive Division, said: “Demand continues to be strong, although we remain mindful of the global supply chain to take appropriate action as needed.
For South Korean automaker Kia, the Seltos SUV remained its bestseller with 8,415 units. Kia Carens picked up the pace, recording shipments of 7,008 units. Sonet and Carnival supplied 6,871 and 328 units respectively as of the March 2022 count.
Kia India also said the company is well aware of the long waiting times and has therefore started three-shift production at its Anantapur plant. “We are still in the recovery phase as the shortage of semiconductors remains a concern, which has affected our planned production. However, we assure our customers that we are alert to global trends and taking appropriate to control waiting times,” said Hardeep Singh Brar, vice president and head of sales and marketing, Kia India.
Toyota Kirloskar shipped a total of 17,131 units during the month of March 2022, making it the highest domestic sales on record in a month since July 2017.
For MG Motor India, sales in March this year were “hugely impacted by supply chain constraints due to the new variant COVID-19 and the current global shortage of semiconductor chips”.
Skoda Auto’s March 2022 sales were its highest ever single-month sales volume in its two-decade history in India. The previous record for the company was 4,923 cars registered in June 2012.
The two-wheeler segment saw a drop in sales during the month of March last year. The country’s largest two-wheeler maker, Hero MotoCorp, shipped a total of 4,25,721 units of motorcycles and 24,433 units of scooters in March 2022.
“With pandemic restrictions seeing a gradual withdrawal due to a steady decline in Covid-19 cases and the reopening of all sectors of the economy, we expect sales momentum to strengthen over the course of the year. of fiscal year 23,” the company said.
Yadvinder Singh Guleria, Sales and Marketing Manager, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) said that despite signs of moderation, the FY22 year continued to impact business momentum due to various challenges stemming from both demand and supply. “However, bringing the synergies of new products with the commercial expansion of fun new models has helped us catalyze consumer sentiment across the RedWing and BigWing businesses.”
For TVS, motorcycle sales increased to 160,522 units in March 2022 from 157,254 units in March 2021. The company’s scooter sales recorded 94,747 units in March 2022 from sales of 104,513 units in March 2021.
According to the company, the semiconductor supply shortage has impacted the production and sales of high-end two-wheelers. “We are cautiously optimistic that semiconductor supply will improve in the months ahead.”
The country’s largest commercial vehicle maker, Tata Motors, recorded growth in all categories. Its domestic sales in March included 14,499 units of M&HCV, 7,555 units of I&LCV, 2,703 units of passenger carriers and 19,668 units of cargo and pickup SCV.
Girish Wagh, executive director of Tata Motors Ltd, said: “The first signs of recovery were seen in the otherwise hardest hit CV passenger segment. We are cautiously bullish on domestic demand for MHCV and ILCV while closely monitoring geopolitical developments, fuel inflation and semiconductor shortages.
Mahindra recorded a large portion of its domestic LCV sales in the 2T- 3.5T segment at 15,202 units, followed by LCVs under 2T at 3,806 units, and LCVs over 2.5T and HGVs at 829 units in March 2022.
Its three-wheeler sales (including the e-3W) were 4,043 units in March this year, but down 9% from 4,461 units in March last year.
Hemant Sikka, President – Agricultural Equipment Sector, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd, said, “Record supply from Kharif acreage, substantial increase in exports of agricultural products such as wheat, sugar and cotton will help to improve the financial situation of farmers, which will lead to better cash flow. in the rural market to help drive demand for tractors in the future.
“The area under kharif cultivation has already exceeded last year’s levels, which bodes well for farm incomes. This will get a boost with an early forecast of a normal monsoon. In the export market, we sold 1,651 tractors, a growth of 43% compared to last year,” he said.
(This is a developing story, we will continue to update numbers as OEMs release their sales data.)