Maruti Suzuki India’s mid-sized SUV Grand Vitara for global markets

Insight Online News

By Venkatachari Jagannathan

New Delhi, July 20 : India’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd will make for the world its newly ‘hatched’ mid-sized hybrid – petrol, battery- sport utility vehicle Grand Vitara, said a top official.

At the global unveiling of the new SUV here on Wednesday Hishashi Takeuchi, Managing Director and CEO told the media that the new model will be produced only in India and will be exported to different markets.

He also said the mid-sized SUV will be exported to Middle East, South American and African countries and it will not replace any other model anywhere in the world.

Queried about the production volumes and the company would have ordered the components from vendors he said the production would depend on the demand volumes within and outside India.

The newly hatched model will be produced at the Toyota Kirloskar Motor Pvt Ltd’s plant in Karnataka’s Bidadi.

Commercial production of Grand Vitara will begin in August and the model will be available for sale in Nexa showrooms from September onwards.

Takeuchi said, Maruti Suzuki India will decide on introducing hybrids in other models like the compressed natural gas (CNG) powered vehicles at a later date.

According to Maruti Suzuki’s Senior Executive Director, Marketing & Sales, Shashank Srivastava, the production backlog for CNG models is about 125,000 units. The company will first clear the backlog of CNG models and decide on having CNG-hybrids.

The Grand Vitara was designed by Suzuki global while the localisation of the components were done by Maruti Suzuki, C.V. Raman, Chief Technology Officer said.

About the market potential for mid-sized SUVs Srivastava said last year the total volume sold in India was about 5.4 lakh units which is about 18 per cent of the total car market.

He said the demand for diesel SUVs will come down from the current 51 per cent.

IANS / AGENCY

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