Who will be India’s No. 1 automobile exporter in FY2021?


Hyundai and Maruti are battling against each other to be India’s no. 1 car exporter. In FY2020 Hyundai went ahead and took the lead from Ford India to be India’s leading passenger vehicle (PV) exporter which led Maruti Suzuki in making a strong bid for the title in FY2021.

As of the end of February 2021, Hyundai remains well placed to retain the title. However, things could change by the end of FY2021. The last month of FY2021 holds the winning card for both the automobile manufacturers. The export demand drivers for Hyundai are the new Creta and Verna.

During the April-December 2020 period, Maruti Suzuki was 14,200 units behind Hyundai whereas now, it is just 8,791 units behind the Korean carmaker. In between April 2020 and February 2021, Hyundai has managed to export a staggering 93,321 passenger vehicles compared to Maruti Suzuki’s 83,530 units. On February 27, Maruti Suzuki proudly announced that it had surpassed the 2 million vehicle exports milestone. A batch of cars comprising the S-presso, Swift and Vitara Brezza left for South Africa from Mundra Port in Gujarat.

Also giving momentum to the company’s export is the made-in-India Suzuki Jimny. Towards the end of January, the first shipment of 184 Jimny’s left Mundra Port headed for Latin American countries such as Columbia and Peru. The 3-door Jimny will be exported to Latin America, the Middle East and African markets from India.

Ford India however is in 3rd position with 43,442 units behind the top two manufacturers. Since Ford is shutting down it’s Brazil operations some of the demand for the EcoSport from South America could be re-routed to Ford India. Surprisingly, the Ford EcoSport holds the title of the most exported car from India.

Right behind Ford India, at fourth place is Kia Motors India with a decent 35,803 units (90%). Hyundai’s sibling does indeed have the potential to boost its export momentum in the upcoming months and years. With such a good amount of exports, Kia Motors India has already surpassed its FY2020 total export tally of 21,461 units.

Volkswagen India, with 29,530 units is at fifth place, followed by GM India with 28,619 units. Nissan India is at 7th position with 27,165 units.

The total passenger vehicle exports in the first 11 months of FY2021 are 363,705 units, which is 40% down year on year. This is not a surprise, considering nearly all countries and key global markets were badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. It is only recently that the key markets have opened up and are noticing the gradual demand returning.

India seems to be doing pretty good with its PV exports, for now, considering some countries’ manufacturing operations are still to come up.

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