Warhel :: Maruti Suzuki launches crossover in late assault on India SUV market

Maruti Suzuki launches crossover in late assault on India SUV market

Updated on: 05-Aug-2015 Views: 84 Views
Maruti Suzuki(MRTI.NS), Indias car market leader but lagging Ford Motor Co(F.N), Renault SA(RENA.PA) and others with new models in the fast-growing SUV segment, launched a crossover vehicle on Wednesday that aims to support ambitious sales growth plans.

Maruti Suzuki launches crossover in late assault on India SUV market


Maruti has set a target of nearly doubling its annual sales to 2 million vehicles by 2020, when analysts expect India will become the worlds third-largest auto market with sales of more than 5 million vehicles despite sluggishness in recent years.



We are taking various initiatives to achieve this goal. An important initiative is launching new cars and entering new segments, managing director, Kenichi Ayukawa told reporters at the launch of the S-Cross - a crossover between a sport-utility vehicle (SUV) and a sedan.



Consultant IHS Automotive forecasts compact SUV sales in India to reach nearly a million vehicles in 2020, or almost double 550,000 it expects to be sold in 2015.



Maruti launched its premium Ciaz sedan last October and has on average been selling about 5,000 a month, while monthly S-Cross sales are targeted at 4,000 - both well below the 20,000 average for its flagship Alto small cars.



The companys dominance in India and the strength of its parent, Japans Suzuki Motor Co (7269.T), in small cars for emerging markets were key factors behind an investment in Suzuki by U.S. activist investment fund Third Point LLC, which was revealed in a letter to investors on Friday and could be worth almost $1 billion.



The base diesel model of the S-Cross will be priced at 834,000 rupees ($13,070) and will be sold through a new network of showrooms for premium models.



It will compete with Fords EcoSport, Renaults Duster and the recently launched Creta compact SUV from Hyundai Motor Co (005380.KS), Indias No. 2 car seller.



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