Commercial Vehicles is Flavour of the Month!

Dear Dealer Colleagues,

The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) few days back, in its first-stage forecast, has affirmed normal monsoon forecast. If the forecast holds true, this will be the third consecutive year of normal monsoon, which means that the Indian Automobile Industry will continue its uptrend as good rural income will push the demand north for consumer goods and automobiles as a whole. We should hence plan our inventories well in advance so that maximum benefits can be squeezed from this phenomenon!

Coming back to the Auto Industry, the year gone by has been a record year altogether as all the segments have leapfrogged in terms of domestic sales. Passenger Vehicles, Commercial Vehicles, Two-Wheelers and Three-Wheelers have all pushed the accelerator pedal hard resulting in record growth. Except PV which grew by 7.89%, all the other segments have clocked double digit growth rates. It is noteworthy that the Industry recovered and expanded even after major roadblocks like ‘Demon’, GST Implementation and the shift to Bharat Stage IV emission norms in 2-W and CV category.

I firmly believe that the Indian Auto Industry is in a sweet spot on the back of cyclical recovery across all segments. Going forward, the stage is set for strong growth in vehicle demand due to:

1.    Increase in Government infrastructure spending and focus on rural economy;

2.    Strong rural demand and higher disposable income in view of 7th pay commission awards; and

3.    New launches.

Two-Wheelers, Passenger Vehicles and Tractor sales are most likely to witness double digit volume growth in FY 2018-19, while Commercial Vehicles growth could be in high single digits. 

F A D A had taken a strong 20 member delegation to attend the NADA Show 2018 held in Las Vegas, USA from 22nd to 25th March. A focus on the future has always been key to NADA’s mission, and this year’s get together highlighted many challenges and opportunities auto retail will face in the next century. Autonomous vehicles, Data Security and Social Media were some of the hottest topics which got discussed and debated upon. There were more workshops than ever which targeted different digital issues – including special sessions with Facebook, Google and Twitter. Keeping the tradition, our delegation also did Key Dealership Visits. New age customer retention techniques and ways to successfully use digital marketing were the key takeaways from our visit. The NADA Show is a crème de la crème event and it is my utmost desire to hold such high class event in India for the benefit of our fellow dealers! 

Continuing its work on the Draft Auto Policy, Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Sector Enterprises had called multiple round of meetings last month. F A D A has been making its presence felt as we are continuously raising important issues like Grant of Infrastructure and Industry Status and Single Point Redressal for grievances redressal.

Reverting to our own activities, I am happy to share that F A D A for the first time is in process of freezing the entire year’s events calendar. I am sure that it will help us plan our future activities in a much better way. I am also delighted to share that F A D A Newsline  a one stop knowledge centre, has been entirely conceptualised, designed and maintained in-house. The learning cycle is a continuous process and hence, I request you to share your feedback on how F A D A Newsline can be improved further. 

With the new financial year already a month behind us, I hope that we keep the momentum of growth intact and wish all the best to all of you for exciting times ahead!

With best wishes.

Yours sincerely

John K Paul

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