The Supreme Court of India has allowed automotive retailers across India to sell only 10% of their leftover BS-IV vehicle stock in a span of just 10 days, once the nationwide lockdown is over. Unfortunately, the orders do not apply to Delhi-NCR.
Automakers and, more importantly, automotive retailers across the country got some relief today, as the Supreme Court of India has announced an extension of the upcoming BS-IV vehicle sales deadline. The order comes after the Federation of Automobile Dealers Association (FADA) approached the apex court seeking a deadline extension of the sale and registration of BS-IV vehicles across the country till 31st May 2020. Clearly, the Supreme Court has only partially delivered on the request with some really challenging conditions.
The order allows automotive retailers across the country to sell only 10% of their leftover BS-IV inventory. Further, this extension will only be applicable for just 10 days after the completion of the nationwide lockdown. As of now, the lockdown is set to end on April 14th. The extension is also applicable to all BS-IV vehicles that have been sold so far but have not been registered. But, the Supreme Court has clearly stated that this order will not apply to the Delhi-NCR region. Therefore, as planned, the sale & registration of BS-IV vehicles will stop in Delhi-NCR post 31st March 2020.
While some readers may applaud the Supreme Court's decision, it's worth mentioning that the Indian automotive industry needed much more support and many more last-minute measures in order to fight the ongoing sales slump. While the industry had been reeling under a severe slowdown for the past year, all hopes of recovering the smallest possible margins were quashed when the inventory-clearing initiatives for the month of March were blocked due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis.
More worryingly, as per FADA, the current inventory of unsold BS-IV vehicles across the country is worth approximately ₹6,300 crores, which includes more than 7,00,000 two-wheelers, around 12,000 passenger vehicles, and about 7,000 commercial vehicles.