Passenger Car Market – 2018

Growth Analysis

Passenger car manufacturers are facing headwinds in 2018 and growth rate has slowed down to 6.4% (Jan-Oct 2017 vs 2018), despite some interesting launches like Maruti Swift, Honda Amaze, Mahindra Marazzo and Hyundai Santro. Automakers would be more cautious for the upcoming year because India will have general election in 2019, which may have some impact on passenger car sales due to the nervousness in the market, emanating from the formation of next Government. 2020 will see much larger impact as vehicle prices will certainly go up due to implementation of BS6 (Phase-1) emission norms, particularly for diesel engine powered cars.

Monthly growth rate in 2018 has been slow since the beginning of the year, except for the month of May and June, due to GST base effect. So, we summarized all the factors impacting the consumer sentiments at one place to understand the effect on the growth of passenger car market.

Note : highest monthly price in Delhi is considered as retail fuel price.



Despite nearly all updated productline, India’s largest car maker Maruti too is struggling in the second half of the year, thus dragging the whole industry growth numbers down.





All other industry players too are feeling the heat, with few exception summarized below.

While temporary factors will go away with time but what is here to stay is higher interest rate and highly vulnerable retail fuel price. Also, rising input cost and depreciating Rupee is having direct and indirect impact on the cost of making cars, even for homegrown companies like Tata and Mahindra. This at some point of time may push automakers for price hike, and lead to further worsening of consumer sentiments.

So, all these could lead to the possibility of higher car prices and even higher discounts in future by automakers to keep inventory in check at factory and dealership level and keep the business running at optimum level.

(The article is written by Rohan Rishi. You can connect with him at emailrohanrishi@gmail.com)

2.0

No, This is not an article on Superstar Rajnikanth’s next movie. However, this writeup is about the super star of the entry-MUV segment – Ertiga’s next iteration.

MARUTI SUZUKI ERTIGA 2.0

The compact seven-seater scene continues to be a hotly-contested segment it seems. From tiny crossovers, to sleek MPVs, automakers are cashing in on this booming segment. Suzuki’s answer to this conundrum? The all-new 2018 Suzuki Ertiga.

Officially making its world debut at the 2018 Indonesia International Motor Show (IIMS), the new Ertiga bears a new face, along with new and updated technologies. With it, Suzuki is determined to keep a foothold on this segment that is populated by such competitors like the Honda BRV and Mahindra Marrazzo.

Much like the new-generation Swift (from which it is based on), the 2018 Ertiga ditches its rounded curves for a more angular, more up market appearance. No longer does the MPV resemble the hatchback as Suzuki gave this all-new model a unique face.

Let’s take a look at the historical sales statistics of Maruti Suzuki Ertiga in the Indian market –





The Ertiga is a 7 Seater mini MPV developed by Suzuki. It is built on the Swift Platform.

Ertiga got the distinction of having the first monocoque MPV of India. The Ertiga is based upon the R-III(R3) concept showcased by Maruti Suzuki in 2010 Indian Automobile Expo. The Ertiga name is derived from the Indonesian word R-Tiga where the R stands for Rows and Tiga meaning three. Thus Ertiga means MPV with 3 rows.

R III concept

First Generation (2012-2018)

The Ertiga was launched in India on 12 April 2012 and created a new segment. Ertiga was below Toyota Innova. Maruti Suzuki proclaimed Ertiga as the first LUV (Life Utility Vehicle).

The Ertiga was offered with K15B petrol engine and Fiat’s 1.3 multijet engine. In June 2013, Maruti Suzuki offered Ertiga with a CNG variant. The Ertiga ruled the segment with no real competitor in the Indian market. Honda tried various models like Mobilio and BR-V. Chevrolet introduced Enjoy but they were unable to take any share and Maruti Suzuki maintained its monopoly in the segment.

First Generation




Second generation(2018-)

The second generation Ertiga is already launched in various ASEAN markets. It is going to get launched in the Indian market in few weeks. The second generation model is revolutionary and has given Ertiga a distinct look.

Sweeping projector headlights along with a bigger, more distinct chrome grill, dominate the front fascia of the new MPV. Also bearing noticeable revisions are the front bumper, foglights and foglight bezels. Newly-designed 15-inch alloy wheels, as well as eye-catching L-shaped taillights, are also seen on the all-new Ertiga.

In terms of exterior dimensions, the 2018 Ertiga measures 4395mm long, 1735mm wide, 1690mm tall and has a 2740mm wheelbase. Compared to the outgoing model, the all-new model is 130mm longer, 40mm wider, and 5mm taller. Wheelbase remains the same as before. However, to further distinguish itself from the Swift, Suzuki gave the new Ertiga its own dashboard and cabin design. High-end models will come with a free-floating touchscreen infotainment system along with heaps of faux wood trim on the dashboard, center console, flat-bottomed steering wheel and door panels. Like the current offering, the 2018 Ertiga continues to come with a pre-dominantly beige interior which has become one of its well-known features.

Second Generation

Other features present inside the Ertiga include a four-speaker sound system, tilt-adjustable steering rack, seat height adjuster for the driver, refreshed instrument cluster design and three 12V power outlets. Like the current generation model, the second row seat can be split folded 60:40 while the third row can be folded 50:50.

Under the hood is a new 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine dubbed the K15B. It displaces 1462cc and benefits from variable valve timing (VVT) and multi-point injection (MPI). The result is 105 PS at 6000 rpm along with 138 Nm of torque at 4400 rpm. Despite being based off the new-generation Swift, the 2018 Ertiga is only available with either a four-speed automatic or a five-speed manual gearbox.

As it sits on the same platform as the Swift called ‘Heartect’, Suzuki claimed the 2018 Ertiga is more rigid and lighter than before. Plus, the MPV will deliver better cornering, stopping and overall driving performance.

Additional features and amenities available in the 2018 Ertiga include the following: power-folding side mirrors, rear parking sensors, keyless smart entry with engine start-stop button, electronic stability program (ESP), anti-lock brakes (ABS) with electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD), ISOFIX child seat anchors and dual SRS airbags.

Sweeping projector headlights along with a bigger, more distinct chrome grill, dominate the front fascia of the new MPV. Also bearing noticeable revisions are the front bumper, foglights and foglight bezels. Newly-designed 15-inch alloy wheels, as well as eye-catching L-shaped taillights, are also seen on the all-new Ertiga.

In terms of exterior dimensions, the 2018 Ertiga measures 4395mm long, 1735mm wide, 1690mm tall and has a 2740mm wheelbase. Compared to the outgoing model, the all-new model is 130mm longer, 40mm wider, and 5mm taller. Wheelbase remains the same as before, however.

To further distinguish itself from the Swift, Suzuki gave the new Ertiga its own dashboard and cabin design. High-end models will come with a free-floating touchscreen infotainment system along with heaps of faux wood trim on the dashboard, center console, flat-bottomed steering wheel and door panels. Like the current offering, the 2018 Ertiga continues to come with a pre-dominantly beige interior which has become one of its well-known features.

Other features present inside the Ertiga include a four-speaker sound system, tilt-adjustable steering rack, seat height adjuster for the driver, refreshed instrument cluster design and three 12V power outlets. Like the current generation model, the second row seat can be split folded 60:40 while the third row can be folded 50:50. The boot space is also said to be improved.

Sources: globalsuzuki,com,Wikipedia and marutisuzuki,com

(This article is written by Gourav Saksham, a dentist by profession and a Petrohead by passion. You can connect with him at gouravsaksham@gmail.com)

Auto Punditz Poll Results – Tata Hexa an SUV / MUV?

We have been getting a lot of feedback on categorizing Tata’s Hexa as an MUV in our sales figures charts. Our intent of terming it as a MUV is considering the prospect customer base for the model; i.e. a Hexa prospect is one who is looking for a capable 7 seater and is extremely feature rich and doesn’t compromise on premium-ness. We do agree that an XUV500 / Compass / Creta buyer may also consider Hexa in their consideration list; but we anticipate that the numbers of such cases may be lower. Technically, Hexa can be considered as a SUV according to the definition (SUV – a passenger vehicle similar to a station wagon but with the chassis of a small truck and, usually, four-wheel drive). However the fact is, There is no universally accepted definition of the sport utility vehicle! And also by the definition; the so called monocoque based vehicles & without 4×4 availability shall be off the list.

Hexa was based on the Aria and was also seen as Innova competitor right from the start. Even the bodyshell of Hexa is same as Aria and from the side there is no visible difference. Moreover Tata had clearly differentiated it with its sibling Safari. Hexa is clearly marketed as a seven-seater when compared to Safari. The Ground Clearance, Approach Angles, Departure Angles and Breakaway Angles are more practical in Safari than Hexa. Hexa is a people’s mover with off road potential while Safari is hardcore off-roader.



We faced a similar dilemma while categorizing Etios under Compact Sedan category – yeah, we are aware that technically Etios is over 4m in length and ‘technically’ we can not put it under the Compact Sedan category. However, our logic of placing it under the CS category is basis the customers’ consideration set. We believe that an Etios customer may consider Dzire, Amaze or Xcent in his/her list (not many will compare with City, Ciaz or Verna).

Auto Punditz have always believed that Sales Figures help us understand the performance of a particular model against the market size and potential. That’s the reason why we have presented relentless reports month-after-month and off-late we have even started categorizing models for our readers benefit. We have always taken our readers feedback very strongly and this poll is a result of the same. It shall help us get connected much better with you and would request your honest response on the poll. Do share the same with your connections and help us get maximum responses for better assessment.

So the results are out:

It was an extremely close match between the two options and was nothing short of a nailbiting-contest when we were counting the votes. We received a total of 147 responses and the categorization of votes is as shown below:

Though MUV emerged as a winner in the poll; it was ahead of the SUV categorization by just 1 vote! We also got a feedback on Twitter mentioning Hexa to be categorized under ‘Family SUV‘ segment. The survey results clearly indicate the confusion in the brand placement of the model and is also affecting the retail performance of the capable vehicle. With Hexa, Tata not only redefined it’s quality aspects; but also bought in a real competitor to Innova/XUV. However, it didn’t fare as expected and was able to sell an average of just 1,000 units in past 22 months (total 22,097 units sold). We expect the model to fare much better in coming time and also the consumer having greater acceptance of the model than it’s counterparts. But all said and done, Indian Automotive Market doesn’t show mercy and only the best survive!

We have already initiated a study on the segmentation of vehicles according to the Indian context and shall release an article too on the subject in coming days.

Top 10 Selling Cars of October 2018



  • Alto regains the No.1 slot and emerges as the best selling car of Oct’18! It was leading by ~3.5k units from the second best seller and proved its worth. Sep’18 best seller Swift was pushed to the No.4 spot!
  • Baleno made its all time highest rank and stood second in the list. The Nexa model is steadily maintaining volumes with the Swift and may even overtake Swift numbers in some time.
  • Dzire ranked third and sold 17,404 units in Oct’18.
  • Brezza sold >15k units and its the third in its lifetime it had crossed 15k units! The Compact SUV has gained tremendous volumes over time and has also emerged as the best selling SUV in the subcontinent. Brezza has also established Maruti as a market leader in the SUV/MUV category.
  • Wagon-R moves out of the Top 5 best sellers and ranked 9th in Oct’18. To make way for the upcoming Wagon-R; the volumes are dropped and we expect the resurgence pretty quick.
  • Hyundai’s Tri-Murti (i20, Grand i10 & Creta) again deliver as expected and ranked 6th, 7th & 8th. Creta now is consistently faring >11k units & even i20 volumes are at an impressive >13k units.

Best Selling Compact Sedans of October 2018



An undying segment!

Yes, there is a reason why we are terming it as ‘undying’ – while OEMs had given up on the segment due to the 1-model dominance (Dzire); Honda rekindled the segment with its Amaze & Ford too isn’t ready yet to give it up and launched the refreshed avatar of Aspire. Tata too had the performance-oriented version of the Tigor (JTP) and is gunning hard to make it as successful as the hatchback sibling (Tiago). Let’s look how the Top 5 models fared in the segment in Oct’18:



  • Dzire as always stood on top and sold 17,404 units. Surprisingly; it is after 17 months that Dzire has sold less than 20k units! The last time Dzire had sold <20k units was in July’17 (14,703 units). Does the falling volumes indicate something brutal for the segment? Or is it the competition is getting fiercer and Dzire is facing the heat?
  • Amaze is now the clear No.2 and sold 5,542 units. However the drop in volumes in Oct’18 is steep when compared to Sep’18 (numbers dropped from 8,401 units in Sep’18 to 5,542 units in Oct’18)!
  • The gap between Xcent & Tigor is minimized and Tigor was just 216 units behind Hyundai’s Xcent. Will Tata be able to gain the lead from Xcent and move to No.3 spot?
  • Aspire in its refreshed avatar made in the Top 5 and sold 2.520 units in Oct’18!

Let’s look at the YoY sales numbers of models in the segment:

Best Selling Compact SUVs of October 2018

This segment has seen major upward movement in the past decade. Even in Oct’18; the segment grew by a whopping 39% when compared to Oct’17.

While Ecosport was the one which identified the true potential of the segment; Brezza redefined volumes here! Many other entrants (likes of WRV, TUV, Quanto, Nuvosport) tried to get a pie in the segment and still trying to do so. Even Tata ventured in with Nexon and was pretty successful here. However; the competition is going to be much more fiercer with Hyundai entering the segment and Mahindra introducing a new model (S201).

Let’s look at the Best 5 selling cars in the segment for Oct’18 –





Nexon again overtakes Ecosport to seal the No.2 spot in Oct’18! Nexon has slowly gained volumes and is maintaining the ~4.5k sales trend month on month. Even WRV gained significant volumes in Oct’18 and registered a sales of 3,253 units v/s 2,421 units sold in Sep’18. The YoY performance of the models in the segment is as mentioned –

Best Selling Sedans of October 2018

One of the most competitive segments in the Industry!

There has been no definitive winner in this category and that’s what makes this segment extremely competitive. Ciaz in its refreshed avatar had taken the Top slot in Sep’18 and was clearly ahead of City & Verna. However, just within a month the scenario changed and the gap between Ciaz & No.2 (City) minimized to just 280 units. Also City, which was pushed to the No.3 spot jumped to the second rank in Oct’18 overtaking Hyundai’s Verna. 4th Spot has been dominated by Skoda’s Rapid and it has been pretty consistent there (anticipated that Yaris could’ve dethroned it).



Let’s see the Top 5 best selling sedans of Oct’18 –





You may be wondering; where is Yaris in the list? Toyota’s biggest launch this year couldn’t meet the customer’s aspirations level and the pricing worked as a deterrent to the model. Yaris registered its all time lowest sales yet and was pushed to the bottom of the table!