Thanks to its strong export volume, Bajaj Auto became India’s largest motorcycle manufacturer by sales in April. Brand maker Pulsar and Discover sold 348,173 units in total, of which 221,603 units were exported.
The Pune-based company expects exports to continue in the coming months, despite the fact that the domestic market has been shaken by the second wave of the pandemic and a quarter of the company’s outlets in the domestic market will remain closed. Average sales in overseas markets are forecast to be over 200,000 units in the coming months. In fiscal 21, Bajaj Auto’s export revenue was Rs 12,687 crores, with 52 percent of the volume exported to over 79 countries.
Albeit by a small margin, Bajaj Auto’s total sales for the month exceeded Hero MotoCorp, which shipped 339,329 units in the month. Hero’s weekly plant closure last month also gave Bajaj an edge over its main competitor. The company said in a statement Saturday that Hero “has suspended the plant for four days in advance from April 22 to May 1 due to the rapid escalation of the spread of Covid-19 across the country.”
Mitul Shah, head of research at Reliance Securities, expects domestic two-wheeler sales to remain under pressure. “Domestic sales of two-wheeled companies are expected to be reduced in line with local restrictions. We expect it to get weaker in May as more states impose restrictions to contain the spread of the virus, ”he said. Thus, May sales may be weaker than April, he added. Most two-wheeler manufacturers reported a monthly decline in sales in April as large shipments remained locked. “
Strong export growth bodes well for the likes of Bajaj and TVS Motor, Shah said.
TVS Motor’s exports also increased sharply. During the month, the company shipped 226,193 units. Of these, 94,807 units were exported against 8,134 units in the same month last year. However, this year’s volumes are incomparable with last year’s, since from March 25, India was blocked for 21 days.
According to the plan, which again focuses on expanding its business overseas, exports of Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, which until now have been exclusively focused on the domestic market, also increased, albeit at a low level. The local branch of the Japanese two-wheeler manufacturer shipped 42,945 units, surpassing 40,000 units for the first time in 36 months.
Yadwinder Singh Guleria, Director of Sales and Marketing, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India, said: “Regional restrictions since early April have significantly reduced consumer sentiment. While the need for personal mobility still exists, recovery could be delayed by several months as home safety is India’s first priority. ” Honda has taken a 15-day closure of its factories due to the raging virus.