"The meltdown in financial markets around the world impacted India, particularly in the last three months of 2008," Debasis Ray, Tata Motors spokesman, told Automotive News Europe. "We expect 2009 to be a challenging year."
In essence, sales of India's largest automaker fell from 582,390 in 2008 to 498,581 units, excluding figures belonging to Jaguar and Land Rover.
As mentioned, the company projects even slower results this year, with exports expected to go down 38 percent to 33,410 units. According to Autonews, Tata Motors' largest export markets are Spain, Italy, Turkey, Russia and South Africa.
India was the company's best seller, despite that global sales fell 18 percent to 111,257 units.
Tata Motors recently launched the long-awaited Nano, a model that was often promoted as the most affordable car in the world. Expected to arrive in Europe in 2011, Tata Nano may also be sold in the United States, with the Indian manufacturer having to slightly upgrade the car to meet local regulations.
According to some specs released by the Indian automaker before the official launch of the car, Tata Nano Europa will produce around 100 g/km of CO2, with fuel consumption reaching 60 mpg (4.7 l/km) in combined cycle.