KARACHI: Indus Motor Company (IMC) is introducing a partial payment scheme for all of its Toyota variants in an effort to boost sales which have dropped to a record low because of lethargic demand in Ramazan and huge influx of imported used cars in the local market.
“Arrival of used cars has affected our sales. But we are not offering this scheme just because used car imports have pushed us to that extent,” said IMC CEO Parvez Ghias while giving a media briefing here on Monday.
The step taken by IMC indicates buyers of new cars are holding back money, which has resulted in subdued demand in recent weeks. This low demand has also compelled the car manufacturers to cut down on their production days.
Ghias did not give the actual sales figure for July, but said sales had dropped significantly. Listing down reasons, he said import of used cars, uncertainty over taxes after the 2012-13 budget and slow economic growth have impacted the car sales.
First 10 days of Ramazan are always slow for car sales while demand picks up in the last 10 days as people buy new vehicles before Eid, he added.
Pakistan imported over 55,000 used cars in the last 12 months, a significant number that local car manufacturers believed directly affected their sales. IMC, the manufacturer and distributor of Toyota and Daihatsu vehicles in Pakistan, produced over 55,000 cars in the last one year.
Last year, total sales of locally manufactured cars hit a four-year high of 157,325 units compared to the preceding year’s 127,944 units.
“This was also the desire of the government, particularly the Ministry of Industries, that the auto industry improve its payment system, so while we are working towards minimising the delivery period, we are also facilitating the customers through this new partial scheme,” Ghias stressed.
About the partial payment scheme, he said Indus Motor strives to be responsive to customer needs and preferences as the customer always comes first. This step is to facilitate the consumer and provide flexibility of payments.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2012.