The growth of Indian passenger vehicle (cars, utility vehicles and vans) market stood out among top volume markets globally in 2017.
Data available for the January-November period of 2017 showed the domestic passenger vehicle market expanded to 2.98 million units against 2.73 million units in the corresponding period of 2016, registering a growth of 9.15 per cent.
This despite a partial impact of demonetisation in the initial months of the year and the introduction of the goods and services tax (from July 2017), which made bigger cars expensive. The Indian market, the fifth biggest, had grown at seven per cent in 2016.
Data from the Society of Indian Automobile Manufactures (Siam) showed the world’s biggest market for passenger vehicles, China, grew at sub two-per cent to 22 million units during the specified period in 2017. This against a 15 per cent growth registered in 2016. The second biggest market, the US, shrunk 11 per cent to 5.58 million units. The country’s demand for passenger vehicles had contracted in 2016 by nine per cent.
Data from the Society of Indian Automobile Manufactures (Siam) showed the world’s biggest market for passenger vehicles, China, grew at sub two-per cent to 22 million units during the specified period in 2017The only country (among the top several market) to clock a high single-digit growth was Japan. The Japanese market reversed the declining trend of 2016 to grow at eight per cent in the first 11 months of 2017, with sales of 3.41 million vehicles. The sales volume in the fourth biggest market, Germany, grew at three per cent in the 11 months of 2017 to 3.18 million units. The UK saw a decline of five per cent to 2.38 million vehicles. The country had grown at two per cent in 2016.
Data showed that except for India and Japan, sales in most top countries have either moderated or at best remained flat in 2017. The Indian market was projected to remain on a growth path in 2018 as well.
Indian car sales would remain robust, growing at seven per cent in 2018, supported by the impact of India's new GST as well as new model launches, according to a Moody’s report. The South Asian outlook has improved dramatically and should further recover in 2018, as IHS Markit has estimated this market would be up 7.3 per cent from 2017, with demand from India accelerating after tax reforms.
India, most experts claimed, would emerge as the world’s third-largest market by 2020, when it can sell up to five million units.