Maruti extended huge discounts on all its products as it wanted to start the year with lower inventory
After the auto sector recorded sluggish sales in the festive season during October and November, Maruti Suzuki's retail sales reached its highest ever in December due to big discounts which also reduced its inventory considerably, Mint reported.
Two people in the know told the publication that showroom sales of India's largest carmaker in December were nearly 220,000 units, up 18.18 percent YoY. This is also the Maruti's highest ever retail sales in a month. The company offered discounts as it wanted to start the new year with lower inventory.
"Lots of customers postponed their vehicle purchases in 2018 because of the rise in petrol and diesel prices and the adverse impact of the NBFC crisis on the availability of credit and the decline in the stock market. Now, with such huge discounts being offered on every vehicle, customers realised it was the best time," one of the two persons added.
Many car buyers were impacted by the credit crunch that followed the Infrastructure Leasing & Finance Services (IL&FS) disaster in September.
Maruti extended attractive offers on all its products through its Nexa and Arena dealerships. There was also a lift in customer sentiment at the end of December. There was a Rs 25,000 discount on SUV Vitara Brezza, one of its best-selling models in India. On premium products like Ciaz and S-Cross crossover, there were discounts ranging from Rs 70,000 to Rs 90,000.Maruti's January wholesale numbers will give the actual idea of the reduced inventory. Sources said the customer sentiment lifted at the end of December, which worked in favour of the company. December is always the time for high discounts on car sales, as customers do not want to own vehicles manufactured in the previous year as the resale value goes down 10-15 percent, Avik Chattopadhyay, founder of brand consultancy firm Expereal, told the paper.