Four South India-based car companies, Renault-Nissan, Hyundai, Ford and Toyota, have decided to collectively ship cars through the Ennore port in Chennai.
The first shipment from the companies from Ennore port with more than 1,600 cars are on the way to Cochin port in Kerala and Kandla port in Gujarat.
The most number of cars in the shipment is from Hyundai, with just over 1,000 vehicles. The companies have been trying to reduce the risk of transportation by reducing the usage of road transport, and this is considered as a viable alternative.
Anand V, senior GM, Hyundai Motor India said: "Currently 96% of all cars produced are transported by road and the rest by rail. Building additional rail infrastructure are too heavy for private companies so the shipping the is a better alternative. We expect this to be much cheaper than road transport particularly when the government's promised 80% discount on vessel charges starts to trickle down."
Shipping via sea has its perks. It is a cost-effective and environment-friendly mode of transportation which will help reduce road traffic congestion and pollution. With the government's new wharfage charge of Rs 500 per car, sea cargo will soon become cheaper than by road.
On the other hand, it is also not time efficient. It normally takes 8 days for a consignment to reach Delhi from Chennai whereas by sea it will take around 12 days.