Never miss a great news story!
Get instant notifications from Economic Times
AllowNot now


You can switch off notifications anytime using browser settings.
11,921.50-96.9
Stock Analysis, IPO, Mutual Funds, Bonds & More

Can Ciaz help Maruti Suzuki win elusive 'premium' tag?

Maruti Suzuki's invincible success as affordable carmaker has made it a victim of perception and despite several try in the past it has not been able establish itself in the premium segment.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Sep 05, 2014, 09.55 AM IST
0Comments
The Manesar plant begins production of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz to meet the September launch deadline
The Manesar plant begins production of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz to meet the September launch deadline
NEW DELHI: As Maruti Suzuki, provider of their 'first car' to most of the Indians, makes yet another shot at the mid-size sedan segment with the Ciaz, analysts say one of its toughest challenges is to achieve an image makeover as premium carmaker.
The Manesar plant begins production of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz to meet the September launch deadline

"Yes, the perception battle is a little tough," said the CEO of a leading advertising firm. " Maruti has done so well in the value segment for such a long time that it has been first car for many.

When they move to a certain phase in life as a consumer, they want to upgrade to a brand which they perceive to be a premium brand," the person said, requesting anonymity.

Maruti Suzuki's invincible success as affordable carmaker has made it a victim of perception and despite several try in the past it has not been able establish itself in the premium segment.

Can Ciaz help Maruti Suzuki win elusive 'premium' tag?

Can the Ciaz - which will replace SX4 and take on the likes of Honda City, Hyundai Verna and Volkswagen Vento in the C-segment sedan space - change that?

Some experts have their doubt.

"Looking at the specifications of Ciaz, I would say the car would turn out to be an under powered car," veteran automobile expert Murad Ali Beg said.

The Ciaz is definitely not a very powerful vehicle as it comes with the 1.3-litre multijet diesel engine that powered SX4, churning out 90 PS of power against 100 PS of power in Honda City's 1.5-litre diesel engine. The Ciaz's petrol engine size is 1.4L, down from 1.6L offered in the latest SX4, churning out 95 PS against 119 PS of power in Honda City's petrol variant.

Abdul Majeed, partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, however, feels the latest offering from Maruti has a fair chance to succeed. "To become successful few things are very important. One is how the product is packaged in terms of feature, comfort and look. The growth is there in the segment and I hope Ciaz will do good," he said.

Maruti Ciaz VS Hyundai Verna VS Hyundai City (Specification Comparison)
Can Ciaz help Maruti Suzuki win elusive 'premium' tag?
Maruti Suzuki India first flirted with mid-size sedan segment in 2007 when it launched SX4, but did not get a response in tune with other cars in the segment. It relaunched it in 2013 at the same price band with much better features, but no substantial improvement was seen in terms of sales. In July this year it could sell only 233 units of SX4 while segment leader Honda City's sales was more than 7,700.

In 2011, Maruti launched luxury sedan Kizashi at a very competitive price and loaded with features such as cruise control, electronic stability programme, ABS, EBD and 10-way seat adjustment. At its launch, Mayank Pareek, the then managing executive officer-marketing at the company, had said, "This is an A4 segment car with A5 features."

But it failed to impress Indian consumers and the car went out of the market the very next year.

Also Read

Maruti Suzuki recalls 63,493 units of Ciaz, Ertiga, XL6 to fix faulty part

Maruti to open bookings for new Ciaz from tomorrow

Maruti Suzuki India Ltd undertakes service campaign of new Ciaz

Maruti drives in Ciaz with new 1.5-litre diesel engine, prices start at Rs 9.97 lakh

Maruti Suzuki aims to reclaim number 1 spot with new Ciaz

Comments
Add Your Comments
Commenting feature is disabled in your country/region.
Download The Economic Times Business News App for the Latest News in Business, Sensex, Stock Market Updates & More.

Other useful Links


Follow us on


Download et app


Copyright © 2019 Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd. All rights reserved. For reprint rights: Times Syndication Service