Earlier Maruti Suzuki India had announced their plans to launch a small and cheap car to rival Tata Nano, the company has now announced that these plans will be put on hold. The car which will be showcased at the Auto Expo 2012 at New Delhi will be delayed due to high prices as per inputs given by Mr. R C Bhargava, Chairman of Maruti Suzuki.
‘K’ cars would prove to be too costly for Indian consumers who are not only cost conscious but would like to see a higher level of fuel efficiency in their cars as well. K cars along with tax incentives would work out to Rs.6,00,000 hence the two K car models MR Wagon and Palette would not be offered in Indian markets.
So, probably Maruti India will have to re-think of its strategy as Tata Nano is not the right competitor except for maybe where the 660 cc engine is concerned. Agreed that the Tata Nano’s 624 cc engine puts it in the direct line of competition with the Kei cars donning 660cc engine.
While Tata Nano is a ultra-compact car with a seating capacity for four, the Kei cars are huge in built. The cars are massive in built with dimensions more than that of Maruti Alto. It’s the same with price as well. As it is there is a wide gap of Rs 1.43 lakhs between the Maruti Alto price and the Tata Nano price. Now, the Kei cars are expected to sit a notch higher than Maruti Alto probably with a price tag of Rs 3 lakhs. These factors strip off the Maruti India’s plans to launch a Tata Nano killer in the segment.
Showcasing K cars at the New Delhi Auto Show would be where Maruti Suzuki conducts a survey as to what customers are prepared to pay for these small vehicles. The small car in the Nano category would have additional features such as higher technology and aluminum engines. While Nano offers 25 kmpl, K cars offer 30.2 kmpl which is one of the highest for petrol cars across the world.