Industry group cuts India car sales forecast

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by Laura Matovina

MUMBAI, India (AP) -- An industry group says car sales in India may grow just 1 percent this fiscal year, down from an earlier forecast of around 10 percent.

The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers said Wednesday that rising fuel prices, economic growth at levels that is "not encouraging," inflation and still-high interest rates are hurting domestic demand more than expected.

Exports have also been hit, with a 6 percent fall in total vehicle exports from April through September.

Car sales for September slid 5.4 percent while commercial vehicle sales were flat.

Sales of two-wheelers slid 13 percent as economic weakness spread to the rural economy.

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