Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd on Thursday joined a long list of vehicle manufacturers in reporting zero domestic sales in the month of April owing to the national lockdown in place to check the spread of Covid-19 disease. While the company remains hopeful of restarting operations, it would only be possible once the lockdown is lifted.
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Mahindra, in a press statement, informed that no passenger vehicles, utility vehicles, cars, vans, commercial vehicles or three wheelers were sold in the entire month of April. This was a direct result of the lockdown in place which has resulted in factories at large being shut, dealerships closed and people staying at home. And while exports were also significantly down, the company did manage to put out 733 units in the month as against 2118 from April of 2019.
The focus for Mahindra now is to prepare for life and work once the lockdown is lifted. "“At Mahindra, we are working hand in hand with all stakeholders, especially our dealer and supplier partners, to get our ecosystem started, once the lockdown is lifted," said Veejay Nakra, Chief Executive Officer, Automotive Division, Mahindra & Mahindra. "We are hopeful that our dealerships will open soon and have stocks to cover the first few weeks of sale."
April has been an unprecedented month for the automotive industry in the country with OEMs reporting zero sales, something which has never happened before. The extraordinary situation arising out of the national lockdown has put a gloom on the present prospects of the industry and a silver lining appears feeble and far into the future at best.
The situation is every bit as grim in international markets too. In the US, most dealers have stopped accepting new vehicles and this has forced manufacturers to keep these parked, some aboard ships. The European markets have also seen a massive decline in demand and production is only now stuttering back to life in some countries. China, the world's biggest car market, saw significant declines in the first three months before manufacturing process finally began under strict safety protocols in April. Here, there has been a push by many cities to encourage people to buy new vehicles and a 2015 plan to remove subsidy on electric vehicles from 2020 has been done away with for EVs under a certain price bracket.