Honda India has served a legal notice on India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki, over advertisements claiming that its SX4 sedan is bigger than the Honda’s segment leader City and the former is loaded with more features. The notice was served on January 13.
The Maruti ad claims that City’s entry-level model does not have an integrated stereo as standard equipment and that the car is shorter and smaller in size compared with the SX4. The advertisement, Honda alleges, makes inaccurate, incomplete and distorted statements with an intention to mislead customers that amounts to unfair trade practice. Honda alleges that the ad is an attempt to discredit the new City, launched in November last year.
“We are examining the issue legally and will take suitable action as and when required,” said a Maruti spokesperson.
It is the largest segment after the small car segment that dominates the Indian market in terms of sales. Honda has asked Maruti to withdraw the advertisements immediately and has hinted at seeking damages. Honda executives maintained that they were awaiting Maruti’s response on the issue before initiating any action, including suing for monetary compensation.