Cars Hot in India but Thailand Prefers Pickups
"It's raining cars in the Indian automobile market," says The Economic Times. Credit the increase in Indian auto sales to a four percent cut in the excise duty. Hyundai Motor India Ltd. has experienced a record 52.3 percent sales boost, and managing director and CEO H. M. Lheem says "The high sales have come on the back of good demand for our small cars." Meanwhile in Thailand, the theme at the 29th annual Bangkok International Motor Show is "The Environmental Auto Globalization" (i.e. surprise: green is in!). Organizers point out that the major cause of global warming "includes vehicle and fuel energy," and automakers have rolled out plenty of hybrid and electric cars. Anyway, the show is dominated by Japanese carmakers. "[T]hey sort of dominate eyespace," says reporter Meenakshi Verma, adding that it's "hardly surprising Bangkok's roads already seem dominated by pickups from that country." He points out that Thailand is "the second largest market for pickups after U.S." And after leaving the show, the Times reporter says he ended up "right in the middle of one of Bangkok's infamous traffic jams," where his informal "straw poll of the cars stuck on the road," confirmed that "pickups are the favorite mode of transport in Bangkok.