The Motor Vehicle Department in Kochi has cracked down on demo / test drive cars that did not have valid registration. These high end cars were being used by automobile dealers as test cars for prospective buyers.
It did not have the necessary papers issued by the authorities under the Central Motor Vehicles Rules (CMVR) of 1989. These Trade Certificates allows cars to be used for trial or demonstration purposes and is valid only for short trials.
These cars did not have the requisite papers and have hence been seized. The department has also imposed a fine of Rs 2,000 on each vehicle under Kerala Motor Vehicle Act while the tax will also have to be paid under the Taxation Act.
The Mercedes Benz which was seized by the authorities at Padamughal, Ernakulam, on Monday, has been driven for over 10,000 kms and this fact came to be known only when the vehicle was stopped by the officials. The reason officials stopped the driver of the car was because he was talking on mobile while driving. Besides this Mercedes Benz, all five cars belonging to various car dealers in Kochi have been seized.
Trade Certificates are issued to dealers under Section 41 of CMVR for a trial period while registration of a vehicle which is priced above Rs 20 lakhs is 20% of the total cost besides road tax. Many car dealers violate these rules, driving the car over long distances and using them for other purposes besides test rides for prospective customers.
These demo cars are later sold off by the company to its dealers at discounted rates. The cops have cracked down on such cases following customer’s complaints that they have been given faulty vehicles.
However, despite these valid regulations, the Kerala Automobile Dealers Association have defied this action taken by the authorities and stated that they would challenge the claim. The Association states that demo vehicles can ply without any restrictions on distance and that the MVD has seized these vehicles for other vested interests with will be taken up so as to release the impounded luxury cars.