India's top vehicle maker Tata Motors on Thursday posted a rise in quarterly sales but stagnant profits as rising raw material costs affected its bottom line.
The auto giant reported a consolidated net profit of 20 billion rupees ($444 million dollars) in the three months to the end of June, up 0.6 percent year-on-year from 19.88 billion rupees.
Analysts had expected profit around the 21 billion rupees mark.
Sales for the April-June period jumped 24 percent to 333.91 billion rupees, said the company, which owns British luxury car brands Jaguar and Land Rover.
Tata Motors, part of the salt-to-steel Tata conglomerate, which manufactures utility vehicles and the ultra-low-cost Nano car, said cost pressures, including commodity price rises, resulted in lower operating margins.Steel, rubber and aluminium prices -- all important raw materials for cars -- have been rising and auto makers, including Tata Motors and Maruti Suzuki, have passed on the burden to buyers by raising vehicle prices in India.The latest data includes sales of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles.
The luxury unit reported a fall in net profit of 3.09 percent to 219 million pounds, the statement said, from 226 million pounds in the same period a year ago.
Sales of vehicles touched 62,090 units, up five percent year-on-year.
Indian car sales slid almost 16 percent in July from a year ago, their biggest drop in nearly three years, as steeper borrowing costs kept buyers out of the showrooms, industry data showed on Wednesday.Indian car sales -- viewed as a barometer of overall economic health -- plunged to 133,747 units from 158,767 in the same month last year.
Last month, India's top passenger car maker Maruti Suzuki showed a surprise 18-percent jump in quarterly net profit to 5.5 billion rupees ($124 million) but warned of sluggish sales as higher interest rates crimp consumer borrowing.