The sturdy displaying — maybe for the primary time ever in India’s automotive historical past — shows the rising fondness and craze of Indian consumers for SUVs, which can be found throughout value factors and types, and have one of many strongest line-ups within the broader automobile market.
With gross sales of 87,720 items in September 2021, SUVs outnumbered the passenger vehicles class –– comprising hatchbacks and sedans — by a big distance because the latter may solely promote 64,235 items in the identical month.
And the development was equally sturdy through the second quarter of 2021-22 — SUVs bought 3,67,457 items whereas passenger vehicles added as much as 3,43,939 items, in keeping with knowledge sourced by TOI from SIAM, the business foyer group.
So what’s fuelling the development? The autumn in costs of SUVs over the previous few years — as firms adopted the physique type even when it got here to small vehicles (which are a magnet for decrease GST charges) — and the broadening street and freeway community throughout are pushing demand for the automobiles which have higher floor clearance and comparatively fashionable and strong design cues.
Costs of mini SUVs corresponding to Nissan Magnite and Renault Kiger start at below Rs 6 lakh, whereas the sub-Rs 10 lakh class has sturdy fashions corresponding to Maruti Brezza, Kia Sonet, Hyundai Venue and Tata Nexon.
The surge doesn’t cease right here: well-liked fashions above Rs 10 lakh embrace Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, Mahindra Thar, and MG Hector. And the craze retains on getting stronger even because the prize shoots up multi-fold or by a number of lakhs of rupees — demand stays equally strong for luxurious off-roaders from Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, Land Rover, and even the Lamborghinis and Porsche, a lot of whom are priced upwards of Rs 1 crore and are even stocked out.
Whereas car puritans stay essential in regards to the recognition of small-sized low-powered SUVs — since they lack the normal “heavy off-roading go-anywhere” options corresponding to 4X4, water-wading capabilities, excessive torque and traction management — others don’t agree a lot with the argument.
“It’s the general packaging that issues probably the most. SUVs provide the greatest worth for cash relating to type quotient, visibility, energy, and cabin house. They supply command and management on the street,” says Ravi Bhatia of auto analysis agency JATO.
Shashank Srivastava, director (advertising & gross sales) at Maruti Suzuki, says that the development is not only confined to India, however is kind of a worldwide shift. “The development is the world over. In actual fact, should you take a look at markets corresponding to China, the US, and nations in Latin America and Europe, the share of SUVs is round 45-50% to total gross sales. India had been a late starter, however has been gaining swiftly,” Srivastava says.
He says that the autumn in costs of SUVs have meant that they’re now poaching clients from each hatchbacks and sedans. “There’s now an enormous value overlap of SUVs with premium hatchbacks and premium sedans. Prospects who by no means thought of shopping for an SUV beforehand are actually trying on the automobiles since they’re inside their attain by way of pricing and choices.”
Firms have clearly learn the development, and thus a lot of the new launches are within the SUV class. Not too long ago launched SUVs embrace Mahindra’s Thar and XUV7OO, Skoda Kushaq, VW Taigun, MG Astor, Hyundai Alcazar, and luxurious ones corresponding to Audi eTron collection and Mercedes GLS Maybach.
Not too long ago, Anand Mahindra was gushing on social media as his firm’s new launch XUV7OO managed a mega 50,000 bookings — signifying a worth of Rs 10,000 crore — in simply two rounds of sale. “The client enthusiasm is staggering,” Mahindra says.
The “coming-soon” record stays equally sturdy with fashions corresponding to Tata Motors’ Punch, Audi’s new-generation Q5, Q3 and Q7, Citroen’s localised C3, and luxurious electrical Model3 from Tesla and XC40 Recharge from Volvo.
Martin Schwenk, MD & CEO of Mercedes-Benz India, says that demand has been phenomenal. “Our SUV portfolio has seen an unprecedented demand and has been on longer ready lists… The SUV portfolio is waitlisted throughout markets, whereas the waitlist for the GLS extends as much as six months, underlining the rising penchant for luxurious SUVs.”
Hyundai, which is now the chief within the Indian SUV class, says that an SUV fulfils a buyer’s want for a automobile that gives an array of options that embrace security, consolation, know-how and efficiency. “Because the development for segmented lockdowns and earn a living from home has been prevalent, clients are additionally taking a look at breaking the monotony with leisure journeys and getaways, fulfilling the will to have SUVs.”