VIJAYAWADA: Sales of cars and bikes are picking up in Andhra Pradesh as people are preferring to travel using individual vehicles for a safer journey during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. Vehicle purchases have picked up in tandem with wave after wave of Covid-19, with third one now on horizon.
Significantly, as many as 1,60,626 bikes and 18,999 cars have been sold during the first quarter of 2021 in AP, reflecting the huge increase in sales compared to the same period last year. As per available statistics, 1.09 lakh two wheelers had been sold in the first quarter of 2020; indicating a 47.09 per cent hike in their sales in 2021. Likewise, only 4,712 cars had been sold in the first quarter of 2020, while the number is 18,999 in 2021, a rise of over 300 per cent.
Despite the economic crisis, people have opted for individual vehicles mainly due to finance options being available under which they repay their loans in instalments.
Auto financiers disclosed that people are opting for long-tenure loans of two to four years for purchasing vehicles.
Private employee Rajesh Jayaraju told Deccan Chronicle that it appears as though waves of Covid-19 will continue in future. “We have already gone through first and second waves and the third one is being predicted shortly. Living with Corona is becoming inevitable. I have opted to purchase a bike, as I do not want to use public transport like buses and auto-rickshaws, thereby putting myself to risk,” he observed.
Car purchasers T. Ravi and G. Nagesh said they and their families had faced many hardships in the absence of public transport and unavailability of vehicles during lockdown. Thus, they have opted for individual cars for travelling with their families, particularly when Coronavirus seems to be a long-drawn affair. They said availability of car loans has turned a boon for them.
Auto financier D. Vijayasaradhi too said possibility of more waves of Covid-19 is forcing people to buy individual vehicles.
When contacted, transport department officials said revenue of the first quarter last year had been Rs 367.13 crore. This year, it is Rs 651.68 crore. Trends indicate that registrations of individual vehicles will further increase in coming days, they stated.