A slew of automotive OEMs are introducing this genre of vehicles to cash in on the current market situation. With its unique design, resembling a van, but much more than that, an MPV can as well be used for personal purposes and that had appealled this segment of vehicles. For instance, Ertiga, from the stable of Maruti Suzuki India Limited is a sell out. In fact, the company is banking on Ertiga to stay on top of the highly competitive Indian automotive market. Maruti Suzuki Ertiga was launched early this year and the share of utility vehicles in its overall sales increased to around seven percent in the first quarter of this fiscal, from less than one percen in the year ago period.
Between April and June this year, Maruti Suzuki had sold 18,970 utility vehicles that includes Ertiga and Gypsy in comparison with 1,491 units last year.
Coming back to the subject of why MPVs are an attractive proposition, the users say that these vehicles are strengthened by a larger chisis, bigger dimensions, world of interior space with comfortable seating. Last, but not the least, vehicles like Ertiga has more boot space. Rest assured, besides the factorys such as higher utility, comfort and safety and extra space, these vehicles are meant for one or more families who would want to travel together on long trips and excurssions. People who have regular vehicles for commutation purposes from home to office and back pattern, but they also prefer MPVs for such weekend sojourns.
If Maruti Suzuki's Ertiga is selling well in the Indian market, so does other older brands from the stables of Mahindra, Tata Motors and Toyota Kirloskar carving a niche for themselves. Mahindra had tasted success with Scorpio, while Tata Motors made inroads by selling Sumo, Toyota had made a killing with its introduction of Innova, both in the private segment as well as taxi segment. That is not all. There are other auto makers including Chevrolet, Mitsubishi, Ford and Honda making MPVs and selling in good numbers too, the battle for supremacy has only become much more intense now.
If you take the case of Mahindra, in the third quarter of the current fiscal, it sold around 61,504 vehicles, usurping the third largest passenger car maker spot from Tata Motors, which had logged 60,405 units. So, in terms of overall sales, now Mahindra has reached the third spot and Tata Motors the fourth, the first being Maruti Suzuki and the Korean car maker Hyundai in the second spot. In the MPV segment Toyota Innova is leading in the race. The battle for third spot is not yet over as Ratan Tata had announced in the recently concluded AGM that it will fight back with renewed vigour to regain the third spot. Having said that, Anand Mahindra had also made up his mind to sustain in the third position with a slew of products. To start with, the company will launch its compact SUV Quanto in the second half of this month. So, who will emerge the winner would be known only at the end of fourth quarter of this year. But so far, with only one car, Mahindra Verito in its entire line-up, Mahindra is giving a good fight to Tata Motors, which have an array of car models.
The target market for SUV/MPV segment is aimed at large Indian families, who prefer vehciles like Maruti Suzuki Ertiga or a Mahindra Xylo. They have wider options now and they settle only for the best vehicle which offers the maximum options to satisfy the ever demanding lot. In the MPV segment, Toyota Innova is the top seller and a market leader at that. So, in the high end, if Toyota Innova serves the purpose, then the new Ertiga will cater to the mid range. For a full report, visit http://automotivehorizon.sulekha.com/