Maruti Suzuki is considering entering the LCV segment since long but the carmaker has only recently come out with concrete plans to commence LCV operations. The plan to foray into the LCV segment was on hold due to poor demand but recently the market has seen considerable growth, hence the move from Maruti Suzuki. The new LCV under consideration is expected to launch in two years and will compete with the segment leading Tata Ace. It will also rub shoulders with the Mahindra Maxximo.
Maruti Suzuki will develop the LCV on the Suzuki Carry platform, which is currently on sale in China, Indonesia and Pakistan. The development of the upcoming LCV is at its initial stage and the vehicle is likely to be available in both CNG and diesel configuration. The vehicle is intended to be a pure goods carrier and will feature a diesel engine licensed from Fiat, which will be produced in India for high localisation of the LCV. Mileage will be the forte of Maruti’s LCV which will give sales a shot in the arm.
In the international market, Suzuki sells the Carry in both mixed and exclusive showrooms and the strategy for the Indian market hasn’t been decided yet. Maruti Suzuki’s plan to enter the LCV segment comes in a way to diversify their product portfolio and to sustain the fluctuating slowdown in the Indian car market. The largest carmaker of the country is setting up its third plant in Gujarat, which is expected to commence operations from 2015. The LCV is most likely to be produced in the upcoming Gujarat plant.