Friday, July 13, 2012
By Manoj Kumawat
SUV in India to enter a price war soon
The SUV segment in India seems to be the most happening segment now. Following the recent entry of Renault Duster and the earlier than expected entry of Ford EcoSport and Maruti XA Alpha soon, expect it to be hot hotter and hottest even more than the sedan or hatchback car segment. So what is that is pushing the SUV sales in India that has led to a 16 percent growth in sales in 2011-12 compared to 2010-2011? Is India upgrading its vision of cars from small to big ones or is it just the replication of the global phenomenon where SUVs are also growing in leaps and bounds.
India has been no doubt a heaven for SUVs. It has Rs 6 lakh to Rs 1 crore SUV present and all sell well specially recently. The entry level SUV in India is Mahindra Thar that starts at Rs 4.65 lakh but being a soft top type SUV, it is different from other SUVs such as Maruti Gypsy that is priced at Rs 5.30 lakh and then there is Premier Rio that has reportedly technical and quality issues with it and that is why its sales never picked up pace. Now that there are many international SUV makers in India, there is a strong competition between the Indian SUV makers such as Tata, Mahindra, Maruti, and Premier and the international players such as Hyundai, Renault, Ford, BMW, Mercedes Benz and others.
The road ahead for SUVs in India seems to be a cakewalk as the success of the Renault Duster launched recently and the craze for Maruti XA Alpha as well as for Ford Ecosport is put into purview. Meanwhile, the SUVs available in India including Tata Safari, Mahindra XUV 500, and Force One SUV besides a lot of others will also be putting in much competition before the new SUVs. Sensing this, sources predict a price war to ensue between SUV makers.