Moderate two-wheeler sales in August, industry pins hope on festive season

    Published On Sep 03, 2021 12:11:00 PM

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    Cumulative sales numbers of 12,71,455 units from six leading OEMs indicate a 6 percent growth month-on-month.

    With lockdown restrictions easing across India and the vaccination drive gaining traction, two-wheeler sales have shown signs of picking up on a monthly basis.

    • Hero sales drop by 24 percent

    • Suzuki witnessed growth of 6 percent

    • Sales decline 15 percent year-on-year

    While cumulative sales numbers from six leading OEMs – 12,71,455 units, indicate a 6 percent increase month-on-month, it declined 15 percent year-on-year. Semiconductor shortages is one of the major concerns in terms of delaying production schedules and reflects an industry-wide trend including passenger vehicles and commercial vehicles.

    Hero MotoCorp: 4,31,137 units / -24 percent

    One of the top manufacturers, Hero MotoCorp’s sales dropped 24 percent to 4,31,137 units in August 2021 as against 5,68,674 units in the same month last year. Month-on-month the sales were almost flat, albeit a tad higher compared to 4,29,208 units sold in July.

    Motorcycles accounted for nearly 90 percent of sales and Splendor, HF Deluxe, Passion and Glamour are amongst the top selling bikes. Keen on increasing the share of exports, Hero MotoCorp further augmented its premium motorcycle portfolio in Bangladesh with the launch of the Hero Hunk 150R in August. The company exported a total of 22,742 units last month.

    The bike maker is hopeful of a revival in the upcoming festive season on the back of a reasonably good monsoon, vaccination drive gaining pace and last mile retail picking up. As a result, it expects that consumers will spend more in the festive season, that is set to kick off in few weeks.

    Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India: 4,01,469 units / -6 percent

    Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India did witness growth in August compared to July, but on an annual basis, it is a tad lower. Its domestic sales surpassed the four lakh mark and grew 18 percent compared to the July reading at 4,01,469 (July 2021: 3,40,420 units). However, on a year-on-year basis, it saw a 6 percent dip in sales (August 2020: 4,28,231 units).

    Going forward, HMSI expects a steady recovery during the festive season. Yadvinder Singh Guleria, Director – sales & marketing, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India said, “With a steady month-on-month recovery in terms of enquiries and customer walk-ins, we are cautiously, but optimistically, moving forward.”

    Sales

    Guleria added that the bike-maker will start deliveries of the recently unveiled CB200X motorcycle in September. However, the semiconductor shortage and rising cost of raw materials continue to be a key overhang for the two-wheeler manufacturer.

    TVS Motor Co: 1,79,999 units / -18 percent

    TVS Motor’s August sales declined 18 percent to 1,79,999 units year-on-year as against 2,18,338 units in August 2020. TVS however posted a 3 percent growth month-on-month when compared to 1,75,169 units sold in July 2021. The company said that the production and sales of premium two-wheelers were severely affected due to the shortage of semiconductors. The company launched its ‘Built to Order’ (BTO) platform, marking its foray into the factory customisation and personalisation segment. This platform will debut with its flagship motorcycle, the Apache RR 310, and will be introduced across other products in a phased manner.

    Bajaj Auto: 1,57,971 units / -11 percent

    Pune-based Bajaj Auto is riding a wave of export-led demand. In August, its overseas shipments of 1,80,339 units saw it record a strong 26 percent year-on-year growth (August 2020: 1,42,838). Domestic sales, however, declined 11 percent to 1,57,971 units (August 2020: 1,78,220 units).

    Royal Enfield: 39,070 units / -18 percent

    Royal Enfield’s sales also declined 18 percent to 39,070 motorcycles in August as against 47,571 units in August 2020. Exports too grew to 6,790 bikes in August but compared to July, its sales were a tad lower (July 2021: 39,290 units). The company kicked off September with the launch of 2021 Model Year Classic 350 which gets a fair number of changes. While the styling takes cues from RE’s vintage G2 model, the big changes are on the powerplant front.

    Suzuki Motorcycle India: 61,809 units/ +7 percent

    Suzuki Motorcycle India clocked a 7 percent growth in August sales in the domestic market at 61,809 units (August 2020: 57,909 units) and exports came in at 11,654 units.

    Satoshi Uchida, Managing Director, Suzuki Motorcycle India said, “The customer sentiment is improving day by day which is positive news for the industry.”

    Growth Outlook

    The August automobile sales reflect the impact of semiconductor shortages and indicates that high fuel inflation and escalating cost of ownership continue to weigh in on sentiment. Though the chip shortage is expected to extend into next year, manufacturers are betting big on demand arising from a satisfactory monsoon, healthy pace of vaccination and hence, expect a volume recovery in the forthcoming festive season.

    Sricharan R

    Also see:

    Bajaj Chetak, TVS iQube witness uptick in sales numbers

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