Two-Wheelers

Two-wheeler sales slow down as buyers remain sombre in September

by Amit Panday Oct 13, 2015

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Seven out of 12 major two-wheeler manufacturers have registered a year-on-year decline in their sales volumes for the month of September 2015. While total two-wheeler industry sales stood at 15,37,137 units during the last month, volumes were down by 1.06% YoY, data compiled by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) points out.

Among the companies that have registered a decline in their YoY September 2015 sales are Bajaj Auto, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI), TVS Motor Company, Suzuki Motorcycle India, Piaggio Vehicles, India Kawasaki Motors and Triumph Motorcycles India.

On the other hand, Hero MotoCorp, India Yamaha Motor, Royal Enfield, Mahindra Two Wheelers and Harley-Davidson Motor Company India recorded an upward move in their respective monthly sales numbers for September.

However, the recent rate cuts (repo rate to 6.75% and reverse repo rate to 5.75%) by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on September 29, 2015 only signals that the cost of borrowing money from commercial banks would be lowered, thereby giving a substantial push to vehicle sales. The two- wheeler market, which sits right in the deep pockets of the rural economy deprived of good farm output and healthy monsoons this year, is expected to see some revival in the coming months.

Hero MotoCorp records marginal growth 

Crossing the magic monthly consolidated sales (including exports) mark of 600,000 units, India’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer by volumes, Hero MotoCorp (HMCL) registered total sales of 606,744 units during September 2015, recording flat growth of 0.44% YoY. The company had recorded total despatches of 604,052 units in September 2014. In terms of additional sales (domestic and exports) by units, the company sold just 2,692 units more than sales volume in September 2014.

On the domestic front, it sold 589,644 units during September 2015, which marked a YoY growth of 1.51% for the company.

However on the cumulative domestic sales front, crossing the three million sales mark for the two quarters in the ongoing financial year, the company has recorded total sales of 31,15,854 units between April-September 2015. Cumulative sales are down by 5.91% when compared to the sales of the corresponding period from the last fiscal.

The company, which has just rolled out two new 110cc scooter models – Maestro Edge and Duet – eyes to garner sales and boost its overall share in the booming scooter market as the festive season begins. First to retail, hence, will be the stylish looking Maestro Edge model that is expected to reach the showrooms today, i.e., the first day of the festive season. The more affordable Duet model, as the company has indicated, will be retailed later into the long festive month.

To boost its sales during the festive season, Hero MotoCorp has also rolled out a few more cosmetically upgraded motorcycle models such as the new Splendor Pro (ex-showroom Delhi price of Rs 46,850) and Splendor iSmart, which is now offered in two new colour options of silver and red. The company has also added a new variant to its Splendor Plus line-up, which now will come with a self-start feature. It hopes that these new refreshed models in its portfolio would deliver increased sales in the coming months of October and November.

Scooters make up for Honda

Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) has registered total domestic sales of 411,645 units during the last month as against the total domestic sales of 420,580 units during September 2014. This points out at a decline of 2.13% YoY.

HMSI continues to see de-growth in its motorcycle portfolio that is largely covered by the growth recorded by its scooters, primarily the Activa models.

The company has sold 147,258 motorcycles during September 2015 as against total motorcycle sales of 179,456 units in September last year, down by 17.94% YoY. Its scooter sales, on the other hand, for September 2015 stood at 264,385 units as against 241,124 units in September last year, a YoY growth of 9.65%.

According to an official release from the company, its year-to-date domestic market share (April-September 2015) stands at 27% within the two-wheeler industry. Also, during the last month, the company had sold over 58,000 two-wheelers in a single day on the auspicious occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi.

On the cumulative domestic sales front, HMSI has recorded total sales of 21,70,425 units for the last two quarters of the ongoing financial year. The sales for these two quarters reflect a growth of 2.92 percent YoY, all thanks to its robust scooter sales.

Third in the order in terms of the domestic volumes, TVS Motor Company reported total domestic sales of 190,094 units during September 2015, which was down by 6.70% YoY. On the cumulative domestic sales front, the company secured total sales of 10,63,664 units, which highlights a marginal growth of 1.20% YoY.

To boost the sales of its commuter motorcycle portfolio, the company rolled out its high mileage model, the TVS Sport, on September 21. The new TVS Sport model, which is now updated with a number of cosmetic and mechanical changes, is the third high-mileage model in the ongoing calendar year after Bajaj Auto’s Platina ES (claimed fuel efficiency of 96.9 kilometres per litre tested by ARAI)and Hero’s Splendor iSmart (ICAT certified mileage of 102.50 kilometres per litre). HMSI, on the other hand, has on offer HET technology across its commuter motorcycle models, which has enabled marginal mileage enhancements on its models.

In comparison to that, some new features that are now offered on the TVS Sport model an all-gear electric start button, aluminium grab rail, chrome muffler guard and a sporty instrument cluster.

According to an official release from the company, TVS Sport’s high mileage can be attributed to its patented DuraLife engine technology, which gives the benefit of reduced friction (via chrome plated piston rings and roller cam follower) and provides less stress on the engine, leading to more efficient fuel consumption.

Fourth in the row is Bajaj Auto, which recorded domestic sales of 187,711 units in September 2015, down by 5.79% YoY. On the cumulative front, the company has sold 955,148 units in the past two quarters of the ongoing financial year. The cumulative domestic sales for Bajaj Auto for April – September 2015 recorded a flat growth of 0.28% YoY.

The company has made a decent comeback in the market through its high volume models such as the CT100, which is the most affordable commuter from the stable, the Platina and the new Pulsars. Reports suggest that Bajaj Auto is working on lining up new models for the festive season which will include all-new Avenger models and possibly another Pulsar motorcycle. The KTM models, on the other hand, continue to provide a steady traction to the company in the midsized motorcycle segment.

Growing on the back of the success of its scooter models, India Yamaha Motor has registered total domestic sales of 67,267 units during September 2015. The month was also the second month in a row when the Japanese company managed to register total monthly sales mark of more than 60,000 units. While the new Fascino scooter is fetching good volumes to the company, the Ray Z and Ray models have now stabilised as they jointly see a stable monthly sales of close to 9,000-10,000 units.

Royal Enfield’s Classic turnaround

Royal Enfield, a unit of Eicher Motors, has sold 43,741 units in the domestic market during September 2015, up by 59% YoY. The company had sold 27,540 motorcycles in September last year. The year-to-date (YTD) numbers (January – September 2015) convey that the company has sold a total of 3,20,040 units in the domestic market so far in this year, thereby registering a growth close to 49% YoY. Royal Enfield’s YTD sales till September 2014 stood at 2,15,483 units.

While the company is currently working on a number of models revolving around new engine platforms for domestic as well as export markets, the management is also aggressively focussing on its UK-based operations.

Suzuki Motorcycle India sold 26,835 units in the domestic market last month, down by a substantial 36.48% YoY. However, all thanks to its new Gixxer models that have provided good traction to the company in the 150cc premium commuter motorcycle segment. The cumulative domestic sales of the company show that it has sold a total of 168,614 units in the last two quarters. This showed a growth of 1.29% YoY.

Rising from a low base, Mahindra Two Wheelers have recorded a YoY growth of 3.04% in its September 2015 sales of 17,124 units. Piaggio Vehicles sold a total of 2,380 Vespa scooters in the last two quarters recording a decline of 11.59% YoY in volumes. The new 150cc Vespa models are expected to deliver some fresh volumes to the company.

The superbike companies Harley-Davidson Motor Co India, India Kawasaki and Triumph Motorcycles India sold 492 units, 103 units and 101 units respectively during the last month. Of these, only the American bikemaker reported a YoY growth of 4.24% for September 2015 sales.

However, on the cumulative domestic sales front, all three have reported a decline in their respective sales volumes for the past two quarters.  

2-wheelers

Also read: INDIA SALES ANALYSIS SEPTEMBER

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