At a time when the increase in excise duty on SUVs announced in the budget this year has robbed most brands of their momentum, the Mahindra Scorpio has done the opposite.
Last month, the vehicle notched up its highest monthly sales ever, crossing the 5,000 unit mark for the first time in its 11-year life.
In the first five months this year, the sales of the vehicle have grown by over 6%. Since the budget in March, when the higher excise duty came into effect, sales have grown nearly 10%.
Industry volumes in the same time declined by nearly 15%. The Scorpio also outsold the recently launched Renault Duster.
'May was the season of marriages and that helped the sales of the Scorpio,' said Pravin Shah, chief executive, automotive division, Mahindra and Mahindra. 'It has been a consistent performer... In a slowing economy customers tend to go for reliable vehicles.'
The Scorpio's growth seems to have come at the cost of stablemate XUV5OO, which slipped off its purple patch selling 2,144 units in May, its lowest monthly sales.
'Whenever taxes go up, there is a direct impact on big ticket products like the XUV,' Shah said. 'Also, I think budget-conscious customers are downgrading to a Scorpio. Once the economy picks up, it will be the other way round.'