New Delhi: India’s largest carmaker, Maruti Suzuki, is currently analysing consumer feedback to see if the Jimny brand could be introduced in the country as a part of the it’s overall plan to strengthen its SUV portfolio, as per a senior company official. As of now, the three-door Jimny SUV is manufactured at the automaker’s Gurugram plant which is exported to Middle East and African markets. The model, though compact in size, is well known for its off-road prowess and has been in the global market for over 50 years.
The SUV was also showcased at the 2020 Auto Expo held in the country before the start of the coronavirus pandemic. “We have collected some very good feedback from the customers. We are studying this feedback and we will definitely see if we can introduce the product here,” MSI Senior Executive Director – Sales and Marketing, Shashank Srivastava, told media.
He added that while the lifestyle SUV segment in the country is small, there still is a class of customers who want that kind of a vehicle. “The volumes are less but such vehicles lift the image of an OEM. At the same time, it also helps support many customer aspirations,” Srivastva said.
He noted that before the launch of any new product in the market, various aspects such as pricing to component supply need to be evaluated. Though there have been delays due to coronavirus, Maruti is now looking to consolidate its position in the mid-SUV segment in the country, where its market share in the segment remains low as compared to the rivals. “In the SUV segment our market share is around 13-14 per cent,” Srivastava said.
Maruti S-Cross in that space is not giving enough volume. “So clearly we have a low market share in a growing segment… We need to strengthen our product portfolio in this particular segment,” he further added.