The festive season boost, along with low base and pent-up demand, accelerated domestic passenger vehicles' sales in October on a year-on-year basis.
As per the industry data released on Wednesday, passenger vehicles sales rose by 14.19 per cent in October.
The category includes sub-segments of cars, utility vehicles and vans.
A total of 3,10,294 passenger vehicles were sold in the domestic market from an off-take of 2,71,737 units sold during the like period of 2019.
Similarly, the data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) showed a sequential growth in sales during October.
In September, a total of 2,72,027 passenger vehicles were sold in the domestic market.
Among sub-segments, the data showed that car sales in the country rose by 9.68 per cent to 182,692 units in October, compared with 166,568 units during the year-ago period.
As per SIAM, the data does not include sales figures from some key players such as Tata Motors.
In terms of utility vehicles, sales grew by 20.45 per cent to 113,990, while vans' offtake went up by 29.24 per cent to 13,612 units against the same month a year ago.
"The month of October saw continuity in sales growth trajectory, drawing on from the previous month. There were marked improvements witnessed across certain segments due to very good festive demand," SIAM Director General Rajesh Menon said.
"The sale of passenger vehicles went up by 14.19 per cent and that of two- wheelers, grew by 16.88 per cent, compared to October last year. Three wheelers saw a slight improvement in sales, compared to the last month, however, it has still registered de-growth of (-)60.91 per cent over the corresponding month of last year."
According to Menon, October wholesale numbers have been good on account of dealers preparing to serve demand for the upcoming Diwali festival, which is in November this year.
On three-wheelers, the data revealed that segments' sales were 26,187 units in October 2020 compared to 66,985 units on a y-o-y basis, marking a decrease by (-) 60.91 per cent.
Two-wheeler sales were 2,053,814 units in October 2020, compared to 1,757,180 units, representing a growth of 16.88 per cent.
"While the OEM optimism regarding festive season was reflected in wholesale sales volumes, which registered a 17 per cent YoY and 11 per cent sequential growth in October 2020, the retail offtake was undoubtedly tepid in comparison," said Shamsher Dewan, Vice President & Sector Head - Corporate Ratings at ICRA.
"Data from FADA indicates that retail sales in October were 27 per cent lower on YoY basis and a marginal 2 per cent higher over the September 2020 sales. While some YoY impact could be attributed to relatively high base - as Diwali and Navratri were both in October 2019 - with increasing cases of Covid-19, the likely retail off-take during Dhanteras and Diwali has become somewhat unpredictable."
According to Shruti Saboo, Associate Director, India Ratings & Research: "As per October 2020 data, PV and 2W sales volume continued to show an upward trend. This mainly reflects the start of festive season (Navratri) in October and OEMs trying to maintain adequate stock for sales anticipated in November during Diwali time."
"The shift towards personal mobility during this pandemic continued to support sales in both PV and 2W segment. In 2W, Motorcycles continued to outperform scooters which shows higher demand coming from rural and semi-urban markets."
On his part, Acuite Ratings & Research's Chief Analytical Officer Suman Chowdhury said: "SIAM data on factory dispatches in Oct 2020 highlights that higher demand expectations during the ongoing festive season, greater need to own personal vehicles and avoid public transportation in the pandemic environment along with higher rural incomes are driving growth in the domestic automotive sector at this point in time."
"However, the sustainability of such a trajectory will depend on actual dealer level sales in the current quarter."
In addition, Sridhar V., Partner, Grant Thornton Bharat LLP, said: "The volume of OEM sales in the passenger vehicle and two-wheeler segment gives rise to good deal of optimism around recovery of the sector. The private mobility needs and bottled up demand during the lock down period has been a major enabler of potential demand."
"The festive season had added a tinge of colour or zing to the expectation of the industry."