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Suzuki posts record exports

MUMBAI, Sep 1 – India\’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India, majority-owned by Japan\’s Suzuki Motor, Tuesday announced record exports in August, led by strong demand across European markets.

Maruti\’s exports nearly tripled to 14,847 vehicles during the month, from 5,795 a year earlier.

India\’s carmakers saw demand for vehicles fall last year due to the global downturn, but lower interest rates and recent stimulus packages from the government have boosted sales.

Including overseas shipments, Maruti\’s total sales rose 41.6 percent to 84,808 vehicles, from 59,908 a year earlier. This was the second highest sales for the company in a single month.

Maruti sold a record 85,669 vehicles in March this year.

"Data showed the highest ever monthly export volume in the company\’s history," a statement to the Mumbai stock exchange said on Tuesday.

"Maruti\’s A-star is the company\’s flagship export model. It saw strong demand across European markets like Germany, France, UK and Netherlands," the release said.

Maruti launched the A-star hatchback in November last year.

The company\’s oldest model Maruti-800 saw a near 27 percent dip in sales at 2,734 vehicles in August.

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In July, the company reported a first-quarter net profit growth of 25 percent at 5.83 billion rupees (120 million dollars) — its best performance in the last six quarters — as domestic and export demand for its new cars surged.

Maruti has the highest market share of the Indian car market although its dominance has been reduced with the entry of global car giants in the past decade.

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