The Indian Hatchback

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An Independent Study - August 2010

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The Indian Hatchback

  1. 1. A Detailed Analysis of the Hatchbacks in the Indian Automobile Market (An Independent Study) August 2010
  2. 2. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><ul><li>Participants </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A Segment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>B Segment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>B+ Segment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Way Forward </li></ul></ul>THE INDIAN HATCHBACK
  3. 3. A hatchback is an automobile designed such that the boot is integrated with the cabin space. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><li>Spark </li></ul><ul><li>Aveo U-VA </li></ul><ul><li>Beat </li></ul>Chevrolet <ul><li>Grande Punto </li></ul>Fiat <ul><li>Figo </li></ul>Ford <ul><li>Jazz </li></ul>Honda <ul><li>Santro </li></ul><ul><li>i10 </li></ul><ul><li>i20 </li></ul>Hyundai <ul><li>800 </li></ul><ul><li>Alto </li></ul><ul><li>A-Star </li></ul><ul><li>WagonR </li></ul><ul><li>Zen Estilo </li></ul><ul><li>Ritz </li></ul><ul><li>Swift </li></ul>Maruti Suzuki <ul><li>Micra </li></ul>Nissan <ul><li>Fabia </li></ul>Skoda <ul><li>Nano </li></ul><ul><li>Indica Vista </li></ul>Tata <ul><li>Polo </li></ul>Volkswagen
  4. 4. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The A-Segment covers entry level hatchbacks. These cars make for great city drives and are the first stepping stones for people graduating to cars. They usually feature sub 1 liter engines, are under 4m long and are priced between 1 to 3 lakh Rupees. Competitors The Maruti Suzuki Alto succeeded the Maruti 800 as the king of hatches. The car continues to be a favorite with buyers, as it continues to clock the highest sales figures across segments. The Maruti 800 was the car that brought 4 wheels to India. It retains a strong emotional relationship with the customers and continues to woe its faithful followers. The Tata Nano, the cheapest car in the world, has definitely generated a lot of interest. Waiting periods ran into months as the public queued up for a piece of the Nano pie.
  5. 5. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Despite featuring only three cars, the A Segment accounts for 25% of total hatchback sales. Source: Press Releases
  6. 6. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Note: 1 Ex-Showroom Price (Delhi) as on 7 th August 2010 Value-for-money is the key to success in this price-sensitive segment. Fewer variants are offered with concerted efforts to keep base pricing as low as possible.
  7. 7. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The small engines and low weights allow these cars to be very efficient. Source: Society of Indian Automobiles Manufacturers (SIAM)
  8. 8. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Source: Company Websites
  9. 9. Upcoming Launches 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><li>The entry level hatchback segment has been ruled by Maruti for decades now. But the Tata Nano has been able to rake in very good numbers as well. As customer confidence grows in the Nano, one can expect better sales. </li></ul><ul><li>Keeping the vehicle well priced, for the very price-sensitive entry level, is the key to initial success. </li></ul><ul><li>Keeping the ownership costs low, in the form of maintenance , spares cost, and efficiency is again of prime importance. </li></ul><ul><li>Buyers in this segment would rather compromise on interior quality, ride comfort, and driving pleasure, than on the price, space and the VFM factor. </li></ul><ul><li>Having a well-established service network helps alleviate maintenance worries, which are a carry forward from the 80s and 90s. </li></ul><ul><li>Honda is developing an A segment offering </li></ul><ul><li>Bajaj and Renault-Nissan are developing a 1 lakh INR car to counter the Nano </li></ul><ul><li>Maruti might launch the Cervo in 2011 </li></ul><ul><li>Hyundai plans to launch an 800 cc car in 2012 </li></ul>
  10. 10. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The B-Segment covers above entry-level hatchbacks. These cars perform best during city drives and afford most creature comforts deemed necessary by today’s customer. They usually feature 1 to 1.2 liter engines and are priced between 3 to 5 lakh Rupees. Competitors The Spark, a rebadged Matiz, has created steady sales for the last few years. The looks make it a favorite with women and the maintenance packages make for a value offering. The Beat was launched by Chevrolet with the hope that it would change their fortunes. While that hasn’t happened, the Beat has definitely generated interest with its unique design. i10 has been a raging success, taking off from where the Santro left. It is the market benchmark for quality and practicality. It has really strengthened Hyundai’s position in India.
  11. 11. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Santro, the victor of the hatchback war of 1998, has seen many successful years. Even though the car is simply outdated now, it continues to sell decent numbers. The Indica Vista was a welcome change from the erstwhile Indica. With an effort to move away from the taxi image, Tata gave it a new name, new style and tried to give it a personal car touch. The Wagon R has always been hugely popular in India. With its new avatar, a new engine, new interiors… it just got better. Being the chart topper for July is no surprise.
  12. 12. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK A Star, or the Alto to the rest of the world, was the car that introduced us to the K10 engine which powers all A and B segment cars for Maruti today. The pricey car has not seen chart burning sales. The second generation of the Zen Estilo saw it losing some of the character it was earlier criticized for. Although, it still does not rake in huge numbers, it is a respectable performer as far as sales are concerned.
  13. 13. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The B-Segment cars post sales of about 60,000 units every month! Launch of the new Wagon R propelled sales Source: Press Releases
  14. 14. Companies offer a large range of variants, from basic to luxury, to target a larger audience. Note: 1 Ex-Showroom Price (Delhi) as on 7 th August 2010
  15. 15. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Most ‘B’ segment cars are tuned with a focus on efficiency. Source: Society of Indian Automobiles Manufacturers (SIAM)
  16. 16. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Source: Company Websites
  17. 17. Upcoming Launches 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><li>Dominated by Maruti, with 4 offerings in the segment including the recently launched Alto K10, the B segment is a lucrative market to tap. This segment has seen quite a bit of activity recently. </li></ul><ul><li>The keys to success remain the same as with the A segment, with fuel efficiency and reliability taking the crown. </li></ul><ul><li>Customers look for a few creature comforts as well, and good interiors coupled with a stylish design can pull in the younger buyer. </li></ul><ul><li>Mostly these cars find use in the city, hence ease of driving and good efficiency are a big advantage. </li></ul><ul><li>The general absence of diesels in this segment can be one of the ways to enter the market. The bottleneck remains the cost of development and deployment for small capacity diesels. </li></ul><ul><li>Fiat India’s small car </li></ul><ul><li>Hyundai i10 and Santro diesels </li></ul><ul><li>Volkswagen UP </li></ul>
  18. 18. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The B+ Segment covers the entire range of premium hatchbacks. These cars are just at home on the highway as they are in the city. Most new hatchbacks are launched in this segment. They usually feature engines above 1.2 liter and are priced between 4 to 7 lakh Rupees. Undoubtedly, with the Indian buyer getting richer, the B+ segment is where all the action is. Competitors The Ritz was launched in May 2009 as a conservative alternative to the hugely popular Swift. The car has been well-received despite the oddball rear as it proves to be a practical choice. The Swift has been a rage in India ever since its launch. A powerful yet fuel-efficient car that meets everyone’s requirements; the Swift makes up for almost half the cars sold in this segment. i20, Hyundai’s offering in the B+ Segment, has introduced the Indian middle class to quality. With interiors shaming cars two segments above, the cosmopolitan Indian is ready to pay the premium.
  19. 19. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Chevrolet’s initial attempt to capture the market, in the form of the Aveo U-VA, pretty much failed. The car was never bang-for-buck, despite its roomy interiors and well-sorted ride. The Grande Punto rescued Fiat in Europe. It hasn’t been able to do the same in India yet. The beautiful car does well on most counts, but Fiat’s old reputation is an albatross around its neck. Figo, Ford’s latest offering, has certainly created a blast in the market. The car is viewed as value-for-money and has been clocking more numbers than the rest of the Ford lineup combined.
  20. 20. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The Polo had been the most ‘looked forward to’ launch this year, and it didn’t disappoint. Offering the hatch buyers a shot at owning a ‘real’ German car; Polo saw heavy bookings, but few deliveries. Skoda’s Fabia was never a numbers player in the market. Marred by unfortunate glitches and an inflated price tag, this deserving car never really took off. Honda’s Jazz is another car that has seen very poor sales owing to its irrational pricing. With most SUVs coming cheaper, the ‘space’ sales point never really struck a chord with the public.
  21. 21. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The B+ Segment is attracting all companies, with almost all fighting for a piece of the premium hatchback pie. Source: Press Releases Figo moved to the 2 nd place within a month of its launch.
  22. 22. B+ segment car prices often compete with entry level sedans’. Note: 1 Ex-Showroom Price (Delhi) as on 7 th August 2010
  23. 23. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Diesel hatches are favorites for people looking for economical long-distance city rides. Note: 1 Ex-Showroom Price (Delhi) as on 7 th August 2010
  24. 24. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Hyundai’s ‘Kappa’ engine leads the pack in fuel efficiency. Source: Society of Indian Automobiles Manufacturers (SIAM)
  25. 25. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK The premium diesels offer stunning fuel efficiency coupled with the low cost of fuel. Source: Society of Indian Automobiles Manufacturers (SIAM)
  26. 26. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Source: Company Websites
  27. 27. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK Source: Company Websites
  28. 28. Upcoming Launches 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><li>Toyota Etios </li></ul><ul><li>Volkswagen Golf </li></ul><ul><li>A revamped Swift with a new engine and exteriors </li></ul><ul><li>A revamped Chevrolet Aveo U-VA with a diesel variant </li></ul><ul><li>The B+ segment is where all the action is. Maruti again maintains a strong hold with its dual offerings: Swift and Ritz. </li></ul><ul><li>The customer here is usually buying his second car, specifically for the city, or is an experienced buyer. </li></ul><ul><li>Important factors can range from exclusivity, premium image to practicality and reliability. </li></ul><ul><li>With a wide range of customer audience, positioning of the vehicle vis-a-vis the right customer bucket is essential for success. </li></ul><ul><li>This diversity is illustrated by the success of Ritz, Swift and Figo which play on the VFM factor. </li></ul><ul><li>On the same level, premium offerings like the Polo and i20 are tapping into the market share as well. </li></ul><ul><li>Pricing is a factor that must not be ignored as has been clearly illustrated by the Jazz’s inability to rake in numbers. </li></ul>
  29. 29. 08/07/11 THE INDIAN HATCHBACK <ul><li>Currently hatchbacks account for over 70% of all passenger cars sold and the segment is growing at rate above 30% annually. </li></ul><ul><li>A Segment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Competitive pricing and providing the basic necessities are of key important. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New launches should focus on keeping costs low, without compromising on – fuel efficiency, space and safety. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>B Segment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New launches can look to differentiate themselves on features, practicality and comfortable ownership, apart from maintaining competitive price points. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>B+ Segment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Higher than expected sales speak for the acceptability of the premium hatch. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New launches must come across as viable alternatives to sedans and should offer: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Suitability for city driving along with the advantages of sedan-like space. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>More customers are looking for safety features. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus should be on either premium or practicality. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Good quality and performance at a reasonable high price is accepted by a niche but ever-growing customer base. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Value-for-money and practicality will continue to be of prime importance to the majority of Indian buyers. </li></ul></ul></ul>

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