The shut down is indefinite and will remain close until Govt policy changes
India’s largest car maker, Maruti Suzuki has shut down both its car manufacturing plants. Effective immediately, Gurugram and Manesar production plants have been shut down. All offices at the plant premises have also been shut. Maruti Suzuki R&D center in Rohtak has also been shut down.
Press statement from Maruti Suzuki India stated – “Maruti Suzuki has been taking all recommended precautions in its operations against the spread of COVID-19, which includes sanitization and hygiene, temperature checks, maximizing video-conferencing and minimizing contact, closing employee travel, health and distancing advisories to employees and following all government directions on the subject.”
“As a next step, the Government policy now requires closure of production and accordingly the company has taken a decision on production closure. The Company will shut production and office operations at its facilities in Gurugram and Manesar, Haryana with immediate effect till further notice. The R&D Centre at Rohtak will also remain closed. The duration of this shutdown will depend upon Government policy.”
Apart from Maruti Suzuki India, Tata, Fiat, Volkswagen, Mercedes, Mahindra, JCB, Hero, Bajaj are the other auto manufacturers who have announced to shut down their manufacturing plants due to corona virus pandemic.
Maruti Suzuki India was already battling low sales due to overall slowdown in the industry, largely due to the shift from BS4 to BS6. Shift to BS6 has resulted in Maruti Suzuki discontinuing all their diesel engine powered cars. There will be no Diesel BS6 cars from Maruti Suzuki India, atleast in the start.
The company has plans to launch diesel engine for their relatively expensive cars like Ertiga, Brezza, Ciaz, S-Cross. But there has been no confirmation yet. For now, there will be no Maruti diesel cars on sale from 1st April 2020.
Due to slowdown, the auto industry has been already crippled. And now, with Corona Virus pandemic, the effects on the auto industry will be huge, to say the least. Maruti Suzuki share price on the BSE has already declined to 5,094 at the end of trade on Friday, 20th March. This from about 7,200 in Feb 2020. With the plants now shut down, the stock price of Maruti Suzuki India is expected to decline even further this week.