Great news! Car, bike sales posting turnaround despite COVID-19 crisis: Here’s how

With the month of August (signals the start of Indian festive season) just a couple of days away, buyer sentiment is going to increase say the experts. New launches happening in the next few months will add to this sentiment.

By:Updated: Jul 29, 2020 7:44 PM

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Its been more than a year wherein the entire auto industry has been reeling under the pressure of low sales, slump in demand and the entire transition phased to BS6. Now that BS6 implementation has been done, the coronavirus pandemic has reared its head. The pandemic looks here to stay for a while. This has further dampened the buying sentiments or so we assume. However, there is good news coming in from the auto industry. Contrary to popular perception, demand is on a rise and automakers are hinting that sales will normalise like before. Industry sources revealed to Express Drives that July has been a very optimistic month. Digital sales have taken a lead. With many working from home, the entire family can sit around a computer or tablet device and choose their next car or bike. Tier-1, tier-2 and the rural markets are the ones that are driving the growth.

Digital sales are claimed to have reached over 100 per cent whereas it was less than 10 per cent pre-COVID. Many a bike or carmaker prefers doing sales online from the start to end. Manufacturer website visits have gone up to 180 per cent from the early observed 60-70. Sources say that the interest is piqued because of the new launches that are lined up for the next two quarters. The hottest space happens to be between Rs 7-14 lakh. A few hours ago, Hyundai sent in a release that the new Creta has got more than 55,000 bookings. This is just a couple of months after it was launched in the Indian market. The Hyundai Creta range begins from Rs 10 lakh and goes up to Rs 18 lakh. That’s a wide price range but interestingly there are buyers.

A motorcycle manufacturer who didn’t wish to be named and has recently revamped its parallel-twin bike confirmed that sales have increased. Due to dealers and manufacturers devising new techniques to attract customers, there are more sales. The new step-up, balloon, deferred EMI schemes, as well as overall low interest rates, are helping build demand. Manufacturers understand that customers don’t have the required spare change to splurge on a luxury offering like a car or motorcycle. Hence the introduction of these schemes has come at the right time.

With the month of August just a couple of days away, buyer sentiment is going to increase say the experts. August signals the start of the festive season in India and hence this will definitely drive sales growth. Nearly 100 per cent normalcy has been achieved with respect to the supply chain and hence production too is at full swing in most factories. With added safety measures in place for both visiting customers and employees, 90 per cent dealerships have re-opened. Since social distancing is the keyword, after the resumption of normal activities, customers will want their own vehicles to travel. Public transport might be shunned for sometime. Manufacturers are depending on this aspect to see a boost in sales of personal vehicles.

Sales in metro cities is expected to go up from next month. As it is, the government has almost finalised the vehicle scrappage policy. The expected linked incentives with the old car/bike scrappage policy will help new vehicle sales. This eventually will reduce pollution as well as get the much needed raw material recycling process in place. A survey done by a manufacturer shows that most of the buyers happen to be new customers or females.

All in all, we will do a sales analysis on the first week of August. It should definitely be a positive bit than what it was for these many months. What do you think?

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