India Watch : November’s Tata Nano sales down 85% year-on-year

The Economic Times, 1st December, 2010          

NEW DELHI: Automaker Tata Motors Limited’s much hyped ‘world’s cheapest’ car, the Nano, has failed to meet expectations as it witnessed a massive decline to 509 units in November this year compared to 3,065 units sold in the previous month.

The decline came during the month when the company had asked customers to bring back the people’s car to add safety devices to prevent it from catching fire. While the company had insisted it was not a ‘recall’, it said that the addition of safety devices, a lesson learnt from some of its brand new Nanos catching fire, was optional.

During October this year, the Nano failed to enthuse buyers and witnessed only 2 per cent growth compared to the same month year ago. Interestingly, the Nano’s sales stood at 5,520 units in September this year, up 61 per cent from the same month last year. However, on a year-on-year basis, the Nano’s sales during November were down by 85 per cent over the same period last year.

In August, the sixth incident of a Nano catching fire since the car was commercially launched in March 2009, was reported in the national capital, three months after a company probe declared the car was “absolutely safe”. Five previous incidents were reported from across the country, including Mumbai, Lucknow, Delhi and near Vadodara in Gujarat.

However, the company witnessed a marginal increase of one per cent in its total sales at 54,622 units the month compared to 54,108 units sold in the year-ago period. Its total passenger and commercial vehicle sales in the domestic market stood at 50,419 units in November, a jump of one per cent from the sale of 50,114 units in November last year, according to the company statement. 

[Source: The Economic Times] 

Clive Goldthorp

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