Amidst the fast growing utility vehicle segment in India, Maruti Suzuki, which is best known for offering practical compact cars, is facing some heat from the emerging segment of SUVs and MUVs. Maintaining its strong market share for the coming future will be an uphill battle for the automaker unless Maruti Suzuki plans to add SUVs and multi-puprose vehicles in its portfolio, as the preference for the segment is increasing rapidly. Maruti Suzuki is the most reliable brand amongst many car buyers and it has the capability to grow in the utility vehicle segment too.
This fiscal, Maruti Suzuki tasted tremendous success with the Ertiga, selling around 70,000 units of the only MUV available in the company’s portfolio. According to the company’s outgoing managing director and CEO, Shinzo Nakanishi, the carmaker needs to add more products after the Ertiga in its utility vehicle space to move ahead, expand its presence in the market and to maintain growth. So that means, we can expect Maruti Suzuki to ramp up the development of the compact SUV concept, XA Alpha, showcased at the 2012 Auto Expo.
The XA Alpha SUV is currently under works and will be priced aggressively, as it will be measuring under 4-metres in length. The compact SUV is intended to take on the likes of the upcoming Ford EcoSport, Renault Duster and the Mahindra Quanto. Many manufacturers are targeting the under 4-metre sweet spot and with a Maruti Suzuki badged compact SUV, the volumes are expected to be very high, if the automaker manages to price it well. The XA Alpha production version is expected to roll out in 2014. We can now expect a larger UV portfolio from Maruti Suzuki soon.