According to data released by Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), domestic passenger vehicle sales in India observed a decline of 17.07 per cent during the month of April 2019. During the aforementioned month, domestic passenger vehicles sales in India stood at 2,47,541 units. In comparison, during the month of April last year, this figure was 2,98,504 units. Domestic car sales declined 19.93 per cent to 1,60,279 units compared to 2,00,183 in April 2018. Motorcycle sales last month declined 11.81 per cent to 10,84,811 units as against 12,30,046 units a year earlier.
Total two-wheeler sales in April declined 16.36 per cent to 16,38,388 units compared to 19,58,761 units in the year-ago month. Sales of commercial vehicles were down 5.98 per cent to 68,680 units in April, SIAM said. Vehicle sales across categories registered a decline of 15.93 per cent to 20,01,096 units from 23,80,294 units in April 2018, it added.
The decline in sales has been attributed to changing market sentiments. In addition to this, the industry is soon going to witness a massive change. This will be in accordance with the new emission and safety regulations. By October 2019, all new cars on sale in India will have to meet stringent crash test regulations. These will include compliance with full-frontal impact, front-offset, side impact and pedestrian protection norms. In addition to this, cars will also have to have certain safety systems installed, for instance, driver side airbag, ABS with EBD, rear parking sensors, driver and passenger seat belt warning along with the high-speed alert system.
By April 2020, cars will have to meet the BS-VI emission regulations. This will require the upgradation of petrol as well as diesel engines with the required hardware, or the development of al-together new engines in order to comply with the set norms. The said upgradation is going to result in a significant increase in the prices of the vehicles, more so diesel ones. And hence could lead to a decline in sales for the oil-burners. Considering this, Country's leading automobile manufacturer, Maruti Suzuki has announced that it is going to discontinue diesel engines from its portfolio post-April 2020. Tata Motors has hinted towards the carmaker discontinuing diesel engines from its compact cars.