New Delhi: Bookings for the TataNano may be closed officially, but it is not that tough to get hold of the world’s cheapest car. The Nano is not only readily available with dealerships holding unsold stocks, it even hit the used car market around three months ago and can be bought there at an even lower price.
The new car does not carry any premium and one can get a one-month-old Nano in near mint condition at a 15% discount.
Supply eases: A Nano on display in a New Delhi showroom. Though bookings are closed officially, a new car is not that difficult to get. Ramesh Pathania / Mint
“There have been a few Nanos that we have procured from customers and then sold in the last few months,” said Rajeev Dubey, president (HR, after market and corporate services), automobile maker Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd, which also has a used-car business.
“There is no premium on a used Nano right now. Just a few days back, we sold an almost brand new car in Delhi for around Rs1.25 lakh for the variant that costs around Rs1.45 lakh in the showroom.”
Usually, the price in the used car market goes up when there is a demand-supply mismatch for a brand new car. Toyota Motor Corp.’s best selling Fortuner, for example, carried a premium of up to Rs50,000 in some cities in the first two months of its launch as there was a waiting list for the vehicle. The Maruti 800 carried a premium for most of its first five years in the 1980s.
“We have not bought or sold any Nano yet but around two months back we were offered two of them in Hyderabad,” said Jagdish Khattar, who runs Carnation Auto, an independent services, spare parts and used car firm. “We did not buy the cars as we did not have an idea at what price it needed to be bought.”
Tata’s own used car subsidiary, Tata Motors Assured, has also sold three used Nanos so far. “We sold the cars over a period of time, which were bought at the same price that the customer bought it for, and sold at the same price as well,” said Debasis Ray, spokesperson for Tata Motors. “Nobody made any money during the process.”
A random check at Tata Motors dealerships revealed that a new Nano is also not that difficult to get.
“The bookings of the Nano are closed but if you are willing to become the co-owner of a new car, then you can get it in two days,” said a sales executive at one of the dealerships. Full transfer of the car takes place in 30 days and costs Rs3,200. “Customers had booked in bulk on speculation of a premium but now do not want to take the vehicle and instead have asked us to sell the cars at the same price at which they were bought.”