Auto sales up, to rev up further

After a dull two quarters of the current fiscal, the third quarter is spelling good news for the auto sector in the city with sales spiralling upward since Dussehra and demand showing an extra bounce in the run-up to Diwali. Last year's Dussehra-Diwali sales had been a dampener, but sales this year have been picking up since Dussehra and dealers are finding it difficult to cope with the sudden pre-Diwali rush.

Both two-wheeler and four-wheeler companies are banking on the "positive'' market growth seen at present and hope for double-digit sales growth around Diwali. P Balendran, vice-president of General Motors India said the company expects a growth of 20 per cent in its sales around Diwali. "We are positive after the launch of our new products," he said. Two-wheeler major Bajaj Auto saw sales grow around Dussehra, from a poor show in the previous quarter. The sales in July-September had dipped to 10,49,208 units, a 9.87 per cent dip from 11,64,137 units of 2010-11 Q2.

This Dussehra was also better for sales as compared to the last year's Dussehra. President of the motorcycle division of the company K Srinivas said this Dussehra saw sales grow 9 per cent as compared to last Dussehra. He said, "We expect the momentum to continue till Diwali. We don't see any reason for any de-growth."

Dealers said there is a "waiting period of weeks for vehicles'' and that demand is likely to "continue till the end of this calendar year." Sagar Pashankar, managing director of Pashankar Auto said there is a "waiting period of three weeks for Honda products." "The products in the Honda stables like Dream Yuga are doing good. There is an overall growth in sales and there is a pre-Diwali rush," he said.

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