Automobile registrations rose by 2.6 per cent last month as transitionary demand crawled in with March 31 as the sunset date for BS 4 vehicles, the Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations (FADA) said on Thursday.

February turned positive for retail sales for the entire ecosystem as auto dealers focussed on liquidation of BS 4 stocks, said FADA President Ashish Harsharaj Kale.

"Rural sales contributed for retail sales turning green with tractors being in double-digit growth for the second month in a row. But the ongoing transition of BS 4 to BS 6 emission norms is a factor in a delayed purchase decision," he said in a statement.

Three-wheeler registrations gained by 20.7 per cent with 65,752 registrations in February 2020 compared to 54,474 in the year-ago period.

Commercial vehicles witnessed an upswing of 13 per cent to 92,805 registrations versus 82,129 in January 2019, data released by FADA showed.

Tractor registrations rose by 13.52 per cent to 41,485 last month compared to 36,543 in the year-ago period.

But two-wheeler registrations totalled 12.85 lakh last month compared to 12.66 lakh in February 2019, marking a slight uptick of 1.52 per cent.

However, passenger vehicle registrations edged lower by 1.17 per cent to 2.26 lakh from 2.28 lakh in the year-ago period.

That took overall vehicle registrations to 17.11 lakh in February 2020, up 2.6 per cent from 16.68 lakh in January 2019.

Kale said auto dealers are facing an alarming drop in customer walk-ins with coronavirus cases being detected in India.

"The overall uncertainty is further contributing to the already weakened sentiment as purchase decisions are getting postponed. BS 6 vehicle supply is also affected due to coronavirus spreading in China and the outlook for March is negative," he said.

FADA India represents over 15,000 automobile dealers having 25,000 dealerships including 30 associations of automobile dealers at the regional, state and city levels accounting for 90 per cent of market share.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.

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