The country’s top auto makers were off to a strong start in the new financial year with Maruti Suzuki , Hyundai Motor, Mahindra & Mahindra and Renault all reporting strong April sales. Analysts tracing the industry estimate passenger vehicle volumes to have risen 11% from a year earlier to about 2,47,000 units in the past month, aided by new launches in the utility vehicle segment.
At Maruti, sales grew more than 16% to 1,17,045 units in April in the domestic market, helped by demand for premium hatchback Baleno and compact sport-utility vehicle Vitara Brezza. Maruti’s sales increased across segments, except for the small-car category — Alto and WagonR — where volumes fell nearly 10%. But in the utility vehicle segment, sales rose nearly fourfold, driven by the Vitara Brezza. “We are happy to begin this fiscal (year) on a positive note,” said RS Kalsi, executive director for sales and marketing at Maruti Suzuki. He said the company, the market leader, is making efforts to improve availability of the Baleno and Brezza which run long waiting lists.