Best Time To Buy Your Car? It’s Now.

Modified On Jun 23, 2021 11:38 AM By CarDekho

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 If you have been waiting to buy a car, July is the right time. The heads of industry explain why. 

With Diwali just a few months away it might seem sensible to wait a bit longer to buy your desired vehicle; after all, your plans have already been delayed so much because of the lockdowns, haven’t they? However, with restrictions easing across the country, should you book your set of wheels? Or should you just wait it out a bit longer? Our advice, based on interaction with the captains of the auto industry, is: book it now. If you know what you want and it’s already on sale, don’t wait. Here’s why. 

Tight Supply 

Like last year nobody was prepared for the second wave, however, dealerships have ended up in a better situation this time around. 

“Supply issues weren’t as bad as last year; dealers still had stocks when we went into lockdown. Which will help us in retailing good numbers in June.”, says Vinkesh Gulati, president, FADA, So, if the car that you want is already on sale, chances are you could get it now and waiting it out might mean a longer wait as manufacturers might not be able to step up production. 

Even as Tata Motors prepares for the launch of the Tata HBX, Shailesh Chandra, president, passenger vehicles, Tata Motors, cautions, “We continue to remain challenged on the supply side. Semiconductor shortages have further deteriorated in terms of visibility of supplies. In the first two months of FY22, we witnessed even greater uncertainty than Q4 FY21. The outlook still remains precarious in the coming months.”

Mahindra Thar

So current offerings on sale might also be harder to come by. Mahindra too are treading with cautious optimism as they prepare to launch their flagship, the XUV700 and the new Bolero Neo. “The semiconductor shortage continues to be a global challenge. Hence, despite the robust demand for our products, the average wait period is between two and three months for different models. For the Thar, the waiting period will vary between nine to 11 months. A big reason behind this is the continued supply chain disruptions after the launch, as a result we were unable to produce to our full capacity,” said Veejay Nakra, CEO, Automotive, Mahindra & Mahindra. 

Shashank Srivastava, Executive Director, Sales and Marketing, Maruti Suzuki sees a better supply pipeline, albeit with some exceptions. “After resuming production from May 17, ramp up has been good. We are moving towards normalcy as far as production is concerned.”

While Srivastava says Maruti Suzuki can shift production between models easily, some will have long waiting periods. “On a brand level - Ertiga, XL6 and Swift have longer waiting periods. Among all  the fuel types, CNG has the longest waiting periods, as  the manufacture of CNG cylinders requires a huge input of oxygen, which was not available for industrial use for the whole of May and part of April, so obviously production of CNG vehicle was much lower for this time.” The waiting period for the Ertiga CNG is 32 weeks, while that of its petrol equivalent is 10-12 weeks. The wait time for the Celerio, S-Presso, Alto CNG range from five to ten weeks. 

Discount Dhamaka?

While Diwali is known to be the best time to get deals, with the high level of uncertainty it might not be as exciting for deal-hunters. 

“We believe that the demand and supply will see a rebound leading to a strong festive season, especially in the personal vehicle ownership space. That said, consumer offers are dependent on the market situation and currently we don’t see the need to have big consumer offers for any of our products.”, says Nakra.  But, there is a bright side - “April to June discounting is up 10 percent in cases. Customer schemes which would be Rs 30,000 would be Rs 32,000 or Rs 33,000 now,” confirms Vinkesh. 

If we revisit the question of waiting till Diwali, “I would say earlier the better,” says Tarun Garg, Director, Sales, Marketing and Service at Hyundai India which is riding high on SUVS. “SUV demand is going up and the waiting period continues to go up. In June almost 75 percent of the demand is back and as more and more markets open up we expect demand to reach normal levels”

Maruti’s Srivastava stresses the point further. “They should not wait. The reason is not so much supply constraints but because of the very high increase in input costs. It is possible that we may see cost pressures getting too much for manufacturers. Prices of steel, plastics and precious metals like rhodium and palladium have gone  up dramatically. It’s much better for people to not hold back purchases.” 

Kia Introduces Updated Seltos With New Logo, Features And Transmission Option

In the last year, several popular models like the Kia Seltos saw prices being hiked by Rs 25,000; Tata’s Nexon and Harrier prices went up by about Rs 15,000 and prices of the Maruti portfolio also increased by about 2.5 percent. 

So, if you have your heart set on a car, make your move now! We wish you safe travels and happy motoring!

Words by Kartikeya Singhee

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