NEW DELHI: After reporting a loss for the June quarter, Maruti Suzuki looks set to report double-digit growth in profit for September quarter, thanks to healthy demand for entry-level cars. Sales are expected to rise in line with volume growth, but realisation per vehicle may drop due to poor product mix, analysts said.

Lower discounts, operating leverage would nonetheless drive margins, they said. The largest car maker in India will report its earnings later on Thursday.

Maruti has reported a 16 per cent YoY growth in volumes at 3,93,000 units. Compared with June quarter, the volume growth was a massive 413 per cent. Marketmen tracking the sector said Maruti numbers would be aided by its leadership position and broadbased presence in the market.

HDFC Securities said any comment on demand trends, particularly in that of the entry-level cars segment, and new product launch timelines would be watched keenly.

It expects Maruti to report a 11 per cent YoY rise in profit at Rs 1,510 crore. Sales are seen rising 16 per cent to Rs 19,770 crore, but Ebitda margins may fall 46 basis points YoY to 9 per cent, HDFC Securities said.

Not all brokerages, however, expect a margin squeeze. Brokerages such as Motilal Oswal Securities and Sharekhan expect margins to expand by over 150 basis points.

Sharekhan is expecting a 19 per cent growth in profit at Rs 1,617.80 crore on a 13.9 per cent growth in sales at Rs 19,352 crore. “Realisation per vehicle is likely to decline marginally 2 per cent YoY driven by increased mix of entry cars,” it said.

The brokerage expects Ebitda margin to rise 179 basis points to 11.3 per cent compared with 9.5 per cent in the year-ago quarter.

Motilal Oswal Securities projects margins to rise to 11 per cent on low discounts and operating leverage. It expects adjusted profit to grow 17.3 per cent YoY to Rs 1,593.70 crore and sales by 11 per cent to Rs 18,847 crore.

“Product launches and competitors’ diesel portfolio performance will be the key monitorables, it said.

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