2018 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga Meets Safety Norms Under Bharat NCAP
Out of the total 9 cars introduced by Maruti Suzuki, the new Ertiga is one of the cars that meet the upcoming safety norms under Bharat NCAP. Owing to the lighter and stronger Heartect platform that underpins this car along with the addition of more safety kit across models, the new Ertiga is expected to be safer than its predecessor. According to the claims by the company, the new Ertiga is compliant with the tests of frontal offset impact, side impact, and pedestrian protection outlined by Bharat NCAP. Apart from the Ertiga, the Heartect platform is featured in several Maruti Suzuki cars such as the Baleno, Ignis, and Swift. Because of the new platform, the new Ertiga is approximately 10-20 kg lighter, based on the model, as well as sturdier than its previous version. The new platform also helps increase the car’s dimensions, making it 99mm longer, 40mm wider, and 5mm taller. While the wheelbase of this car remains unchanged, the increase in the overall size has made the interiors of the MPV more spacious, especially the third row. As opposed to the previous model of the Maruti Suzuki Ertiga, the new version carries multiple safety equipment such as dual-front airbags, Isofix child seat mounts, ABS with EBD, speed-sensitive door locks, rear parking sensors, and a speed warning system as standard across all variants. The higher-spec trims add safety features like height adjustable seat belts in the front. Furthermore, the top-spec variant of this MPV gets a rear parking camera and the automatic versions come with ESP and a hill-hold function.
Kia Motors to Focus on Premium Car Segment
Due issues relating to pricing, Kia Motors has decided to focus primarily on the premier segment as opposed to the small car segment. The CEO for Kia Motors, Kook Hyun Shim stated that they might consider entering the premium small car segment sometime in the future.
Kia Motors plans on launching its first offering, an SUV code named SP2, in mid-2019. Mr.Shim further added that the new vehicle is India-specific and the carmakers have no intention of importing any models from its global line-up.
Furthermore, Kia Motors is an advantage with regards to the implementation of the new auto policy. The CEO stated that Kia Motors is well prepared since they have another year to implement the new policy.
Car Manufacturers Decided to Offer Festive Discounts to Increase Sales
Owing to sudden spike in prices of fuel and insurance along with the degrading condition of the stock markets, car sales have been declining for quite some time. In a bid to protect themselves from the alarming decrease in car sales, car and sport utility vehicle (SUV) manufacturers have decided to provide festive offers to entire buyers and push sales. As per a report, the inventory levels of these vehicle manufacturing companies are far above average which, in turn, has led them to offer massive discounts. Several car makers such as Hyundai, Maruti Suzuki, Ford, Mahindra & Mahindra, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and Tata Motors are offering discounts on their products including sedans, hatchbacks, and SUVs. The auto industry witnessed a growth of 7% during the first half of the current financial year, but the outlook currently looks tough.
Maruti Suzuki is offering a discount of Rs.25,000 on the Alto 800, while the WagonR currently has a discount of Rs.40,000. On the other hand, the Maruti Swift and Swift Dzire are available with a discount of Rs.20,000. The Hyundai Grand i10 is available on a discount of Rs.40,000, and the Elite i20 and Verna feature a Rs.20,000 off. Mahindra & Mahindra is providing a Rs.58,000 off on the Scorpio. According to the Head of Industry Body Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) and the President of the Automotive Division at Mahindra & Mahindra, Rajan Wadhera, this step was taken since many people are postponing their purchases since the running costs have increased. In addition to this, the car sales in the country are witnessing a decline owing several other factors such as high fuel prices, low consumer sentiment, and the effects of monsoon in several parts of India. According to the report, the car manufacturing companies also blame the insurance costs along with the recent political discourses in the run-up to elections for impacting the buyer sentiment. The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer at Hyundai, Y K Koo, has stated that the situation is unhealthy and the crash of the rupee is troubling companies even further. He further added that even though the inputs of the company are expensive, Hyundai is not able to pass on the additional costs since sales are slow. SIAM had given a forecast of 9% to 11% for the sector at the beginning of FY 2018-19, but it needs to be revised downward now looking at the current situation. Even luxury cars such as Mercedes-Benz and Audi have recorded a marginal decline in numbers. One of the top dealers in New Delhi has recently stated that there is a liquidity crunch because of the cautious banking system. On the other hand, traders and SMEs are not getting enough funding to meet even their business needs, while the stock market turmoil has also not helped with the situation.