Maruti drives in S-Presso at 3.7 lakh
New Delhi: Maruti Suzuki drove in a new mini car as the country’s largest car company tries to shrug off the slowdown blues currently plaguing the automotive market. The company said that new launches and heavy discounts are helping re-charge demand as the festive season kicks in.
The S-Presso, for which the company has spent over Rs 600 crore, comes with an entry price of Rs 3.7 lakh (ex-showroom). The BS6 car sports a 1-litre petrol engine and comes with both manual and auto gear shift transmission options. Maruti MD Kenichi Ayukawa said the current slowdown — which has lasted nearly a full year — is now more-or-less in its last leg. “We believe the current turbulent times are a short-term challenge. We continue to have confidence in India’s long-term growth story.”
S-Presso is targeted at newage buyers, and Maruti hopes it can help revive sales of entry-level models. Its old warhorse Alto has been under pressure due to slowdown and has seen volumes dip by 50%. Shashank Srivastava, director (marketing and sales), said Alto’s numbers will not be impacted after entry of new model.
Also, he said that he expects the overall car market to come back, especially with uncertainties around GST and BS6 migration going down. “Car buying being a discretionary purchase, so sentiments are very important. Therefore, you find sometimes there is disproportionate effect in terms of sales... I think in the last few days, there has been a change in sentiments partly of course due to festive season… we don't have a crystal ball to see how far it sustains… definitely as compared with previous months it is much better."