Saturday, September 9, 2017

Ford, VW, Nissan, Skoda, Audi, General Motors may give Auto Expo 2018 a miss

At least six automobile companies are likely to skip the biennial Auto Expo 2018, South Asia’s largest show, as they seek to cut costs amid weak sales.

Ford India Pvt. Ltd, Volkswagen India Pvt. Ltd, Skoda India Pvt. Ltd, Audi India Pvt. Ltd, Nissan India Pvt. Ltd, Ducati India and General Motors India Pvt. Ltd (which is exiting India) have decided against participating in the show, at least one executive in each of the companies said, requesting anonymity.
Eicher Motors-controlled Royal Enfield, Bajaj Auto Ltd and Harley-Davidson India Ltd skipped the show in 2016 citing high participation cost and inadequate returns and have also decided against participating in next year’s event.
A Skoda India spokesperson confirmed that the company will not participate. Emails sent to the other companies did not elicit any response till press time.
The executives cited non-availability of India-specific models to showcase in the show and financial constraints as reasons for not participating.
“They have not been able to sell vehicles. All the money that they get from customers, half of that goes to the government in terms of taxes,” said a senior executive at a car maker who did not wish to be named.
In the four months ended 31 July, sales at Ford India grew 0.24% from a year earlier; GM India sales plunged 70%; and Nissan’s sales fell 7.15%. Skoda India’s sales grew 29% and Volkswagen grew by 3.84% from a low base. That compares with the 7.29% growth in the Indian passenger vehicle industry during the period.
“Auto Expo is not only about price that they pay for the space but also about construction, labour, imported materials and cars,” the industry executive cited earlier added.
While several companies are likely to skip the show, SAIC’s MG Motor unit, Peugeot and Kia Motors Co are likely to participate for the first time.
A spokesperson for Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the organizers of the Auto Expo, said that preparations are going on and it’s still receiving bookings.
with thanks : Hindustan Times : LINK : for detailed news.

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