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India Full Year 2004: Maruti Alto challenges 800, leader for 20 years

The Maruti Alto, left, ends the year 20.000 sales below the 20 year leader, the Maruti 800, right.

* See the Top 23 All-brands and Top 80 All-models by clicking on the title *

The new vehicle market in India is expanding by leaps and bounds, up another 23.7% to annihilate the annual million units for the first time in the country’s history at 1.142.128, up 49% from just 768.801 two years ago in 2002. Once again Maruti (+22%) manages to salvage its market share at 42%, approaching the half-million units itself. Quite stunningly, the entire Top 8 brands post double-digit gains, starting with Tata (+27%), Hyundai (+16%), Mahindra (+22%) and Toyota (+20%). Chevrolet (+301%), Honda (+112%) and Ford (+42%) score the biggest improvements in the Top 10 while Hindustan (+4%) and Force Motors (+3%) are the weakest.

The models ranking is the theatre of a sudden and dramatic change: just as it celebrates 20 consecutive years of reign, the Maruti 800 (-22%) is tumbling down to its lowest share ever at 11.6% and is now threatened by the Maruti Alto (+166%) up to a record 112.000 sales and 9.7% share which benefits from a life-changing price drop. In fact, the Alto is already the best-seller in India over the 2nd Half of 2004 and should take the lead in 2005. The Hyundai Santro (+12%) and Tata Indica (+27%) are knocked down to #3 and #4, the Maruti Wagon R (+69%) is up one spot to #5 and the Maruti Zen (+9%) and Omni (+11%) both down two to #6 and #7, making it 5 Marutis in the Top 7 for the 2nd straight year – and ever. The Tata Indigo soars 41% to break into the Top 10 at #10. There are only two additional foreigners in the Top 15: the Toyota Qualis (+19%) and Honda City (+115%).

Previous year: India 2003: Maruti 800, Wagon R, Alto shine in record market (+20%)

Full Year 2004 Top 23 All-brands and Top 80 All-models below.

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