The sales numbers for the two-wheeler industry are out. The top five players that make up for nearly 80-90 percent of the market have delivered upbeat sales in February 2021. However, on a month-on-month basis, a few posted muted or flat performance due to supply chain concerns owing to shortage of semiconductors and container availability. The impact of sky-high petrol prices also needs to be factored in.
The world’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer sold 4,84,433 units in February 2021. This is a 1 percent increase on a YoY basis compared to the 4,80,196 units sold in February 2020. On a month-on-month basis, there is a 4 percent growth compared to the 4,67,776 units sold in January.
Hero MotoCorp remains optimistic about growth in the coming months, as a credible recovery in the Indian economy and a positive momentum towards personal mobility are expected to strengthen the demand for two-wheelers. With the vaccination drive also gaining pace across India, the company expects a swift recovery in businesses and the economy. Recently, the company announced its highest-ever revenue for any single quarter: Rs 9,776 crore for the third quarter (October-December 2020) of FY2021.
Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India
Maintaining a positive sales growth momentum for the seventh consecutive month, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India posted a 31 percent jump in domestic sales at 4,11,578 units in February 2021 as compared to 3,15,285 units sold last February. On a month-on-month basis they had a 1 percent drop compared to 4,16,716 units in January 2021.
Honda’s exports also grew 16 percent to 31,118 units. Also, total sales rose 29 percent to 4,42,696 units. Yadvinder Singh Guleria, Director – Sales & Marketing, HMSI said, “While the industry growth is expected to hover near the double-digits in Q4 and upcoming Q1 due to the low base of BS VI transition, Honda continues to drive the two-wheeler demand recovery for the second straight month of 2021. Backed by robust demand for our models across both Red Wing and Silver Wing (300cc+ premium motorcycles), Honda’s sales have surged 31 percent in February 2021. We are confident of maintaining the positive sales momentum in coming months too, with our three new models (CB350RS, 2021 Africa Twin Adventure Sports, Grazia sports edition) exciting the market.”
In February, Honda expanded its network and inaugurated three new BigWing showrooms in Siliguri, Vadodara and Thane. With this, Honda’s premium motorcycle business has now expanded to 5 Honda BigWing Topline showrooms (for the entire premium motorcycle range starting 300cc) and 18 Honda BigWings (for 300-500cc mid-size premium motorcycle) outlets.
TVS Motor Co
TVS Motor Company’s domestic two-wheeler sales grew by 15 percent registering 1,95,145 units in February 2021 as against 1,69,684 a year ago. As against month-ago sales of 2,05,216 units in January 2021, it is a 5 percent decline. Also, the company's total two-wheeler sales grew by 21 percent recording 2,84,581 units in February 2021 as against 2,35,891 units in February 2020. Motorcycles grew by 16 percent recording 1,37,259 units and scooters grew by 56 percent registering 95,525 units in February 2021.
Exports grew by 23 percent at 1,01,789 units in February 2021. The company said that the demand in the export market continues to be robust, but scarcity in container availability is affecting overall export volumes.
Bajaj Auto reported total sales of 1,48,934 two-wheelers last month, up 1 percent year on year (February 2020: 1,46,876). In January 2021, they sold around 1,57,404 units, posting a 5 percent drop on the month-on-month sales. In comparison, the company’s exports are up 7 percent YoY to 1,83,629 units (February 2020: 1,63,346).
Rajiv Bajaj, MD, Bajaj Auto told our sister publication, Autocar Professional, “We are growing at over 50 percent but still losing production every month due to supply chain problems. This month (February 2021) we will lose, between domestic and exports, 6,000 KTMs because of shortage of semiconductors and ABS parts from Bosch.”
Chennai-based Royal Enfield sold around 65,114 units in February 2021 posting a growth of 6 percent compared to 61,188 units sold last February. During January 2021, they sold around 64,372 units, posting a 1 percent growth on the MoM basis. The company’s export grew 94 percent in February 2021 (4,545 units) compared to February 2020 (2,348 units).