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India May 2019: Hyundai Venue lands, hurts Maruti Vitara Brezza in worst market decline this decade (-20.5%)

The Hyundai Venue has landed in Indian dealerships.

The worrying situation for new car wholesales in India has escalated very quickly: from -2.4% in March to -16.4% in April and a full-on -20.5% freefall in May to 239.033 units, the steepest year-on-year decline this decade. Poor consumer sentiment and uncertainty linked to the recent general election had a major part in this abrupt sales slowdown, and high inventories at dealerships mean the double-digit drops could keep coming in the next few months. For now, the year-to-date volume is down -8.5% to 1.330.312. Local behemoth Maruti Suzuki (-25%) dives even faster than the market but remains above the symboling half-market mark at 50.6% share. The three next best-selling brands are the best confirmed performers in the entire market (some premium brands may have performed better but are estimated). Mahindra (+3.8%) is the only brand to officially posts a year-on-year gain this month while Hyundai (-5.6%) and Toyota (-7.4%) manage to contain their losses to the single-digit, something no other carmaker has officially managed. Renault (-11.6%), Volkswagen (-13.6%) and Skoda (-19.2%) gain share year-on-year but Fiat (-71.4%), Datsun (-52.1%), Tata (-37.7%), Jeep (-35.6%), Nissan (-30.4%). Ford (-29.9%) and Honda (-27.9%) all skid down mightily.

Over in the models ranking, the Maruti Swift (-11.3%) limits its loss and snaps the pole position for only the 5th time in history after April 2012April 2017, September 2018 and November 2018. The Swift eclipses 2019 YTD leader the Maruti Alto (125.1%) and 2018 leader the Maruti Dire (-33.5%). However the most attentive will have noticed that sales of the Maruti Baleno (-21.8%) and its new Toyota rebadge the Glanza (2.142) would add up to 17.318, overtaking the Swift (17.039) for the month as India’s best-selling vehicle. The Maruti Ertiga (+81.9%) breaks into the Top 10 for the first time at #9, with the Maruti Eeco (+49.4%) also showing market-defying resolve at #6. But the event of the month – aside from the devastating overall market loss – is the arrival directly at #12 of the Hyundai Venus with over 7.000 wholesales, in line with the 25.000 order the small Korean SUV has already received here. The Venue is aimed squarely at the segment leader the Maruti Vitara Brezza (-43.8%) already hit in the heart. Finally, notice the Mahindra XUV300 crossing the 5.000 monthly wholesales milestone for the first time and the Tata Harrier maintaining itself inside the Top 30.

Previous month: India April 2019: Honda (+23.3%) stays afloat in steepest market loss in over 6 years (-16.4%)

One year ago: India May 2018: Maruti (+24%), Tata (+61%), Honda (+41%) outpace market up 20%

Full May 2019 Top 22 All-brands and Top 90 models below.

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