The Indian commercial vehicle (CV) industry has experienced the toughest periods in this decade due to cyclical and economic slowdown coupled by the adverse impact of the pandemic. As per the ‘Grant Thornton Bharat Auto Bytes’ report for the month of May, the future of India’s CV industry is likely to be shaped by trends such as telematics, electrification, evolving regulations, IoT and big data, benchmarking global standards, higher tonnage vehicles and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS).
Saket Mehra, Partner, Grant Thornton Bharat, said, “Overall, the (Covid-induced) crisis has given an opportunity (for the CV sector) to redesign business processes with extensive use of new emerging technologies and thus paves the way for innovation. As digital retailing witness growth, OEMs like Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland, etc., and their dealers will need to plan their strategy in stages for a seamless transformation.”
At the macro level, the pandemic is the major reason for the decline, said Mehra. But if you take a step back to the pre-pandemic scenario also, CV sales took a hit because of multiple reasons, he said. "Last year, the government’s spend on the infrastructure sector got reduced very significantly, Mehra said.
As per the report, the Light Commercial Vehicle segment got immensely benefitted because of the growth in the consumption-driven by the e-commerce companies. “There is a lot of customisation happening like light trucks being used as cold storage transportation for vaccine or food products. Companies are modifying their products in its bit to be compatible with those kinds of vehicles,” Mehra said.
What will aid the recovery for the CV industry? The central government working on initiatives to accelerate infrastructural projects will aid in the recovery of the CV industry, he added.