Carmakers are offering discounts up to 20 percent on new units of models worst affected by a slowing demand and rising inventory, opening up more options for buyers.
Most carmakers are offering lower effective retail prices, by slashing ex-showroom prices or by offering cheaper loans, especially on their petrol models. Maruti Estilo, Fiat Punto, Chevrolet Spark and Hyundai Accent sedan are just some of the other models available at steeply slashed prices.
“There is a marked difference in the retail prices of cars with huge inventories being piled up as the festive period failed to live up to the expectations,” said a Delhi-based Maruti Suzuki dealer, “Companies are offering huge discounts across models, the highest in the past three years, but it’s the petrol cars where discounts are the highest.”
Auto financiers say companies are also offering discounted interest rates on new cars to spur demand, even as they stand to make up the difference to the lender. Czech carmaker Skoda Auto, for instance, is offering a flat 9.99 percent interest, against the current market rate of 14 percent. Honda is offering cars at an even lower 9 percent interest.
“In the slowing market, companies have bundled up options to bring down the actual price burden of the customers. Now many cars are virtually priced at par with the used cars as companies are forced to offload their inventories, which have almost doubled in the past two months,” said a senior executive of HDFC Bank, the largest private lender in the Indian automotive market.