New Delhi:
Automobile registrations across the country dropped by more than 28 per cent in March from the year-ago period but passenger vehicles marked a sharp increase of 28 per cent, the Federation of Automobile Dealers Association (FADA) said on Thursday. FADA President Vinkesh Gulati said the second wave of Covid-19 is not only spreading faster but is also destabilise growth which India has been able to achieve in last few months.

"Any lockdown at this point will severely hamper the momentum which is getting built for auto industry to come out of the woods," he said.

Data released by FADA showed three-wheeler registrations were down by 50.72 per cent with 38,034 registrations in March 2021 compared to 77,173 in the year-ago period.

Commercial vehicles witnessed a downswing of 42.20 per cent to 67,372 registrations versus 1.16 lakh in March 2020. Two-wheeler registrations totalled 11.95 lakh last month compared to 18.46 lakh in March 2020, marking an downturn of 35.26 per cent.

However, passenger vehicle registrations edged higher by 28.39 per cent to 2.79 lakh from 2.17 lakh in the year-ago period. And tractor registrations rose by 29.21 per cent to 69,082 last month compared to 53,463 in the year-ago period. That took overall vehicle registrations to 16.49 lakh in March 2021, down 28.64 per cent from 23.11 lakh in March 2020.

"Tractors continued their dream run as rural incomes saw improvements after successive monsoons and good rabi produce. If experts are to be believed, India will witness a normal monsoon for the third year in a row. This will further see tractors performing well in FY22," said Gulati. Since Maharashtra contributes 10 to 11 per cent of the auto retail, the current lockdown will have catastrophic effect on overall sales for the month of April, he added.

FADA India represents over 15,000 automobile dealers having 25,000 dealerships including 30 associations of automobile dealers at the regional, state and city levels accounting for 90 per cent of market share.