New Delhi: Looking to gain a firm foothold in the premium segment, the country’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) Wednesday rolled out crossover vehicle S-Cross at an introductory price range of Rs 8.34 lakh and Rs 13.74 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).
“We currently have a market share of 45 percent in the passenger vehicles segment. Still, 55 percent of market is not with us. With the launch of this vehicle, we hope to further increase our market share,” MSI Managing Director and CEO Kenichi Ayukawa told reporters here.
He, however, did not specify by how much the company was looking to enhance its market share.
“Our target is to sell around 3,000-4,000 units of the S-Cross per month,” he said, adding that the company has already received over 30,000 inquiries and 6,000 bookings of the S-Cross.
Ayukawa said: “There is a segment of customers in India who want power and performance in their vehicles, but also the comfort and refinement of a sedan. It is in that spirit today, we are launching S-Cross.”
MSI and its suppliers have invested over Rs 600 crore towards development of the S-Cross over a period of four years. The S-Cross will be available only in diesel engine options of 1.6 litre and 1.3 litre.
The DDiS 200 (1.3 litre) variant is priced between Rs 8.34 lakh and Rs 10.75 lakh. The DDiS 320 (1.6 litre) trims are priced between Rs 11.99 lakh and Rs 13.74 lakh (all prices ex-showroom Delhi).
It’s positioned to take on Hyundai’s newly-launched SUV Creta and Renault’s popular SUV Duster, which are priced between Rs 9.12 lakh and Rs 12.49 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) for comparable engine variants.
Maruti Suzuki will sell the S-Cross through its newly launched Nexa chain of showrooms, Ayukawa said, adding that the company has various premium models in the pipeline which would be sold through these outlets going ahead.
“In order to enhance our market share we have created Nexa outlets so that we could cater to premium segment as well,” he said.
MSI has struggled in the past to be as successful in big cars as it is in small cars. It has the Ciaz sedan in the big car portfolio. S-Cross is the first vehicle which would be retailed through Nexa showrooms.
Built on a brand new platform, the S-Cross has various features, including cruise control, rain sending auto wipers, self-adjusting hydraulic clutch and rear seat recliner.
“Starting today, S-Cross will be exclusively available at Nexa outlets. We have 35 outlets operational today across 23 cities. We plan to have 100 showrooms across 30 cities by end of this fiscal,” Ayukawa said.
On exports, Ayukawa said the company will ship S-Cross to overseas markets but priority would remain domestic market.
Maruti is looking to extend its leadership in India by entering new segments.
It has stated that launching of the crossover vehicle and setting up of Nexa network are the first few steps to meet its target of selling two million units annually by 2020.