The decline in the Indian auto industry is a concern for one of the world's largest automakers Ford Motor Company, the firm told CNBC at the Auto Shanghai Summit 2013.
"The softness in the Indian market right now is a little bit of a concern," said president of Asia Pacific operations David Schoch on the sidelines of the auto show.
India is one of the American automaker's key regions, as the firm expects 70 percent of its growth over the next decade to come from Asia Pacific and Africa. However, Ford's sales in India dropped 38 percent year-on-year in March due to challenging market conditions including hikes in fuel prices, ongoing high interest rates and high inflation.
"Like China, India has tremendous growth opportunity but all markets will tend to go through cycles," said Schoch. "But I believe we are at a point in a cycle and we are keeping our focus on the long term vision and opportunities we have in India, so fundamentally our strategy hasn't changed," he added.
The once red-hot Indian auto market softened for the first time in a decade over the past year, as domestic passenger car sales fell 6.7 percent in the year to March 2013 on the previous year when car sales grew by 2.2 percent, according to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers. The decline was a sharp slump on the 30 percent rise in sales seen in 2010-2011.
Ford has a more positive outlook for China, the world's largest auto market, said Schoch. Ford sales in China have been growing fast as the company tries to catch up with bigger players, such as Volkswagen.
The company's sales rose 65 percent year-on-year in China in March, but the automaker still has only a 3 percent market share.
Total vehicle sales in China were 19 million units last year and are expected to surge to 32 million by 2020.