Always wanted to own that Mercedes or a BMW? Or an Audi, but can hardly afford the ultimate in luxury cars? Even high-end models of popular brands like Maruti, Hyundai or Renault are out of reach. Don’t worry, now is the time if you are dreaming of a chance to pick them up at a bargain price. All you have to do is wait for auctioneers to announce dates for putting up the flood-damaged vehicles under the hammer when Kerala starts rebuilding itself after the flood waters recede. Big car dealers are firming up plans to pitch their tents in Kerala, like they did in Chennai in Tamil Nadu two years ago when the capital city of this southern state was submerged under flood waters. Few BMWs, Audis, and Mercedes luxury cars costing upwards of Rs 2 crore a piece, went for as low as Rs 2 lakh or so. A costly sale of that of a Land Rover, costing Rs 1.25 fetched Rs 18 lakh to the auctioneer from a big used car seller of the country. There were Lamborghinis and Jaguars too for the picking.
Also Read | Kerala Disaster: When government ignored the danger signs The reason for the rock bottom garage clearance sale of these luxury cars and high-end sedans and saloons was that they were all submerged under flood waters for three days in the December 2015 floods that hit Chennai. The capital city of TN and its adjoining four districts received the highest rainfall in a century that year leading to flooding of these areas. Likewise, Kerala too was lashed by the highest quantity of Monsoon rainfall of the century for the past one week and the state is submerged in flood waters. The only piece of good news is that MeT office has predicted less rain and withdrew the red alert in all the 12 affected districts of the God’s Own Country. Abhishek Gautam, COO of Cardekho.com, auctions division, is moving men and material to Kochi from next Monday to set up operations headquarters there to source and auction flood-damaged cars. For him, Kerala floods is the fifth flood-related auctions of vehicles he would be conducting, the previous one in Chennai where the total number of vehicles handled by his company totalled around 5,000.
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In Chennai, Dabas had picked up an Audi, just few months old, for a mere Rs 18 lakh and needed no additional spending. He just drove it away for re-sale elsewhere.
For the insurance companies, who will be flooded with damage claims, the auctions help cut their losses. “If the auctions are successful, they would reduce our losses,” said an insurance sector source. For the present, plans are being firmed up, for auction in Kerala. Early movers in this business began reacting and putting up teams even as television channels began beaming live pictures of monsoon fury a week ago.
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