Maruti Suzuki had zero domestic car sales in April, the company reported in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.
The largest Indian carmaker reported all its production facilities were closed during the month, in compliance with the nationwide lockdown imposed by the Indian government to contain the spread of COVID-19. However, Maruti exported 632 units from Mundra port in Gujarat after port operations resumed in late April.
RC Bhargava, the company’s chairman, expects sales to boom once lockdown restrictions are eased across the country, according to media reports. However, the Society of Indian Automobiles and Manufacturers (SIAM) expects the auto industry to face major demand challenges once the economy reopens.
Recently, Suzuki Motors, Gujarat, which manufactures cars for Maruti on a contract basis, informed the company that it had suspended production, indicating it would restart the plant only after lockdown restrictions eased. In March, domestic car sales halved compared with the same prior year period.
The Indian auto industry is a major consumer of lead and zinc, among other metals.