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India Full Year 1998: Podium 100% Maruti, Hyundai Santro and Honda City instant blockbusters

The Hyundai Santro is the best-selling foreign nameplate in 1998 after just 4 months in market.

* See the Top 17 All-brands and Top 40 All-models by clicking on the title *

The Indian new vehicle market endures a 9.5% year-on-year drop in 1998 to 530.342 units. However brand leader Maruti once again outperforms its home market with a slim 3% drop to reach a new all-time high share at 59.2%. Mahindra (-9%) matches the market to remain at 12.5% and slide above Tata (-26%) for the 2nd place overall by just 127 sales. It’s a debacle for the rest of the Indian contingent: Premier (-71%), Force Motors (-42%) and Hindustan (-24%) all sink. All-in-all, Indian manufacturers ex-Maruti drop 24% to 32.5% share vs. 38.8% last year. It’s a similar situation for the first wave of foreign carmakers that had entered the Indian market a few years back: except Daewoo (-0.2%), first foreigner to break into the annual Top 5, and Fiat (+89%) now inside the Top 10, Peugeot (-89%), Opel (-67%) and Ford (-57%) all fall as fast as they had risen.

Honda tries a low-cost approach for India with the City, produced locally.

A second wave has arrived though: the event of 1998 in India is the spectacular debut of both Hyundai and Honda, lodging very similar scores and landing directly at #7 and #8 brand respectively with both 1.6% share. A very promising start for both carmakers that have invested in local production, especially when you take into account they both rely on one single nameplate: the Hyundai Santro shooting up straight to #9 model and best-selling foreigner – even though it only launched in September – and the Honda City landing at #10, both dislodging the long-term #1 foreigner, the Daewoo Cielo (-25%) while the Fiat Uno (+89%) is up 7 spots on last year to #12. Finally Mitsubishi arrives at #14 and places the Lancer at #27 while the Daewoo Matiz appears at #24. All-in-all, foreign carmakers gain 22% to 8.3% share vs. 6.1% a year ago despite the steep declines of half of them.

Once again in the middle of this storm the Maruti 800 (-9%) remains relatively unscathed, even improving its market share slightly to a mammoth 31.6%. The Maruti Zen (+5%) continues to climb, reaching a best-ever 2nd place while the Maruti Omnivan (+12%) returns on the podium for the first time since 1994. This way, Maruti monopolises the Indian podium for the first time in history, pushing the Mahindra Jeep (-11%) down two ranks to #4. The Tata 407/608/609 (-18%) is back above its stablemate the Sumo (-42%) while the Hindustan Ambassador manages to remain at #7.

Previous year: India 1997: Maruti up to record 55.1% share, 800 and Zen on podium

Full Year 1998 Top 17 All-brands and Top 40 All-models below.

India Full Year 1998 – brands:

PosBrand1998%/971997%Pos
1MARUTI313,91559.2%-3%322,79855.1%1
2MAHINDRA66,44812.5%-9%73,27312.5%3
3TATA66,32112.5%-26%90,12615.4%2
4HINDUSTAN21,9454.1%-24%28,6914.9%4
5DAEWOO10,6012.0%0%10,6171.8%7
6FORCE MOTORS9,1001.7%-42%15,6262.7%5
7HYUNDAI8,4471.6%new00.0% –
8HONDA8,2491.6%new00.0% –
9FIAT7,4091.4%89%3,9180.7%11
10EICHER MOTOR4,3830.8%-13%5,0400.9%10
11PREMIER4,2760.8%-71%14,8592.5%6
12FORD3,5420.7%-57%8,1981.4%9
13OPEL3,3660.6%-67%10,2431.7%8
14MITSUBISHI1,0850.2%new00.0% –
15MERCEDES9380.2%51%6200.1%13
16PEUGEOT2470.0%-89%2,2750.4%12
17BMW700.0%8%650.0%14

India Full Year 1998 – models:

PosBrandModel1998%/971997%Pos
1MARUTI800167,63531.6%-9%183,80031.3%1
2MARUTIZEN63,69212.0%5%60,56010.3%3
3MARUTIOMNIVAN58,64011.1%12%52,1848.9%4
4MAHINDRADIESEL JEEP58,09211.0%-11%65,64011.2%2
5TATA407/608/60932,0706.0%-18%39,2676.7%6
6TATASUMO27,0485.1%-42%46,7048.0%5
7HINDUSTANAMBASSADOR18,3183.5%-23%23,6674.0%7
8MARUTIESTEEM17,3163.3%-6%18,5193.2%8
9HYUNDAISANTRO8,4471.6%new00.0% –
10HONDACITY8,2491.6%new00.0% –
11DAEWOOCIELO7,6851.4%-25%10,2671.8%9
12FIATUNO7,4091.4%89%3,9180.7%19
13MARUTIGYPSY JEEP6,2351.2%-7%6,6881.1%14
14FORCETRAX6,0161.1%-38%9,7131.7%12
15MAHINDRAFJ/XJ4,5010.8%-1%4,5570.8%18
16EICHER MOTOREICHER4,3830.8%-13%5,0400.9%16
17TATASAFARI4,0530.8%new00.0% –
18FORDESCORT3,5420.7%-57%8,1981.4%13
19PREMIERPADMINI3,4380.6%-66%10,0121.7%11
20OPELASTRA3,3660.6%-67%10,2431.7%10
21FORCEMATADOR/TRAV.3,0840.6%-48%5,9131.0%15
22MAHINDRAMAXX3,0830.6%new2,0780.4%23
23HINDUSTANTREKKER3,0480.6%-6%3,2520.6%20
24DAEWOOMATIZ2,9160.5%new00.0% –
25TATATATA 2072,0620.4%-4%2,1540.4%22
26TATAESTATE/SIERRA1,0880.2%-46%2,0010.3%24
27MITSUBISHILANCER1,0850.2%new00.0% –
28MERCEDESE-CLASS8610.2%42%6080.1%28
29PREMIERNE118/1.38D8380.2%-83%4,8470.8%17
30HINDUSTANCONTESSA5790.1%-67%1,7720.3%25
31MAHINDRACABSTAR4070.1%-59%9980.2%27
32MARUTI10003970.1%-62%1,0470.2%26
33MAHINDRAL3003650.1%new00.0% –
34PEUGEOT3092470.0%-89%2,2750.4%21
35MERCEDESCLK460.0%new00.0% –
36BMW5-SERIES320.0%14%280.0%30
37MERCEDESSLK310.0%158%120.0%32
38BMWZ3180.0%50%120.0%33
39BMW3-SERIES140.0%-26%190.0%31
40BMW7-SERIES60.0%0%60.0%34
41DAEWOODYNA00.0%-100%3500.1%29

Source: Manufacturers

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