India’s Maruti Suzuki posts record exports

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MUMBAI, September 1, 2009 (AFP) – India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India, majority-owned by Japan’s Suzuki Motor, announced record exports Tuesday in August, led by strong sales across European markets. Maruti’s exports nearly tripled to 14,847 vehicles during the month, from 5,795 a year earlier, helped by its A-star hatchback launched last November.

“Data showed the highest ever monthly export volume in the company’s history,” Maruti said in a statement, reporting strong demand in European markets such as Germany, France, Britain and the Netherlands.

India’s car exports have been buoyed by incentives in major European markets to scrap old vehicles in exchange for new ones, aimed primarily at shoring up European automakers.

“In recent months, Indian carmakers’ sales have been boosted by the scrappage schemes in European markets,” said Vaishali Jajoo, analyst at Angel Broking.

Including overseas shipments, Maruti’s total sales rose 41.6 percent to 84,808 vehicles, the second-highest sales tally for the company in a single month. Maruti sold a record 85,669 vehicles in March.

The announcement of higher sales pushed Maruti shares up 103.6 rupees or 7.21 percent to 1,540.25