Amidst the nationwide lockdown, demand has gone up considerably for used cars and a large part of the same has manifested itself greatly in the unlock phase. People are now looking to bypass public transportation facilities for commuting to work or for daily necessities. Upon a full unlocking of the country, buyers will naturally make a greater shift towards personal mobility via passenger cars and two-wheelers like bikes and scooters. With people also being impacted financially by the pandemic owing to factors like job losses, pay cuts and higher costs of living, they will naturally gravitate towards used cars in India.
Most Searched Cars in Lockdown
The Indian automobile industry is opening up steadily at present and demand will naturally increase for personal cars as a result of safety guidelines and preferences for social distancing and better personal hygiene. People will also look to conserve their money and choose high-value utility vehicles which are pre-owned as per industry experts. Hence, hatchbacks and entry-level cars should witness sizable demand in the short term following which people will once again consider upgrades from two wheelers to used cars in the medium term.
Demand and supply levels were both at their peak levels before the COVID-19 outbreak and owing to the lockdown, demand initially came to a complete stop owing to movement and business restrictions nationwide. However, in the unlocking phase, demand has been steadily going up for used cars in the country. Demand is expected to be significant for used cars starting from Rs. 1.5 lakh onwards. People are now more comfortable with buying used cars online while they will also expect sanitization and other safety protocols in place when they venture into the offline part of the used car buying process across dealerships.
As per several reports, the most searched used cars in the lockdown phase were the Mahindra Scorpio and the Maruti Suzuki Swift along with the Maruti Suzuki 800, Maruti Suzuki Swift, Maruti Suzuki Alto, Toyota Innova, Maruti Suzuki WagonR, Mahindra Bolero, Used Honda City and Maruti Suzuki Zen among others. Millennials are the predominant buying population that is opting for used cars and more than half of people between 21-36 years of age are likely to purchase a used car as their very first private car. Amidst the pandemic, used car demand is expected to peak not only in metros but also suburbs, tier-2 and tier-3 cities.
Many car owners are also expected to upgrade to a better used car model as per experts. Swift recovery is thus expected for the pre-owned car category in the near future. People in suburban towns and cities will be wary of commuting by trains or buses to their workplaces and hence demand will go up for high-value used cars from a more utilitarian perspective. Conversely, once the economy starts picking up, people will look for greater value with their purchases and may upgrade to better models of used cars from even bigger brands.