Product Feature : Tata Hexa

Hexa is one of the most ambitious project of Tata Motors and a lot is at stake for the Indian Automaker with its launch. Let’s see how the product’s success will be significant for Tata –

  • It will be Tata’s second attempt to step in the premium vehicle space.  Earlier Tata’s have burnt their fingers with the Aria and would want to ensure that they leave no stone unturned for Hexa’s success. Also note that Hexa will be the costliest Tata vehicle to be displayed in the showroom as on date.
  • Tata Brand Repositioning – With Hexa, Tata would want to go away with the badge of manufacturing ‘unreliable’, ‘cheap’ and ‘low quality’ cars. Tata’s have invested a lot of time and money in terms of making Hexa niggle-free, premium and feature laden car.
  • Cater to a unrepresented market – MUV space in the Rs.12-18 Lakhs is empty as of now (earlier catered by the previous-gen Innova). Literally Hexa got to fill Innova’s shoes; which is not an easy task at all! The customers in this segment have already got habituated with Innova’s quality and reliability – it’ll be a big feat for Tata if they are able to successfully lure these customers to their fold.
  • Will ensure sustainability – After a lot of turmoil, Tata’s saw growth in the Indian operations last year due to the success of Tiago. They’d want to continue this momentum with Hexa and enhance their overall volumes.
Arizona-Blue
Tata Hexa

Before talking about the specs, lets look on how Tata has worked to improve Hexa’s quality aspect. Some of the components were sourced internationally. For Ex –

  • LED tail lamps from South Korea
  • Brushed Aluminum surrounds on air vents from Germany
  • Soft touch plastics from USA
  • Seat covers from Germany Benecke-kaliko

Tata claims to have put the Hexa through 8 lakh km of road testing (cumulative). The Hexa was tested across three continents – Asia, Australia and Europe, in temperatures ranging from – 20 C to 50 C. Detailed Supplier list here for reference:

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Source: The Automotive India

Hexa was launched on 18th Jan 2017 amongst much fanfare. It is currently available with a 2.2L Diesel engine and offers a fuel efficiency of 14.4 kmpl. The price (ex-showroom Delhi) for the variants are:

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Also let’s have a look at the specifications of Hexa:

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Exterior Highlights:

Exteriors

Interiors Highlights:

Interiors

Comfort & Convenience Features:

Comfort

Safety Features:

safety

Color Lineup:

colors

Indian 2 Wheeler Sales Figures – Dec 2016

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OEM-wise sales data (Source: AutocarPro)

Model-wise Sales Statistics:

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Top 25 Two Wheelers for Dec 2016 –

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Snapshot:

  • Mahindra 2 Wheelers degrew by 85.62%!!! Lesser said the better for this Indian OEM. Need fast-track progress in bringing new products from Mahindra (inspiration from BSA & Java motorcycles will help).
  • Honda is literally surviving on Activa’s performance. While Activa stood on top of the table; it was the only offering from Honda in Top 10 selling Two-wheelers!
  • Almost 42% of the TVS’s sales is contributed from Moped sales! XL Super has no immediate competition and has grown significantly in number over the years.
  • In the Top 5 selling models – 2 from Hero, 2 from TVS and only 1 from Honda!
  • Dominar dispatches have started from Dec’16 – 185 bikes offtake done in the first month.
  • Triumph has more offerings (products) in India when compared to Hero Moto Corp! While even with 20 models on sale; Triumph managed to sell only 84 units.
  • Aprilia SR150 on the sprint of reviving Piaggio’s fate in Indian soil. The product has been accepted well and has definitely shown promise.
  • Royal Enfield seems shielded from all kinds of adverse market scenarios – even Demonitization couldn’t shake the steller performance of this growing two wheeler manufacturer.

Car of the year 2016!

We decided to announce the Car of the Year 2016 basis the sales statistics of the Calendar Year. 2016 was an interesting year with many new launches holding the flag for the respective OEMs and NEWER segments were created. Indian love for SUVs was showcased in the overall design of the manufacturers and products like Kwid (hatchback with a SUV look), KUV100 (bigger hatck with SUV inspired design) sold in good numbers. This also heralded the birth of recently launched Ignis. Let us see who wins the race to become the Car of the Year 2016 –

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Top 25 selling cars of 2016

*The rows highlighted in Yellow are the cars which were launched in the Indian soil in the past 18 months. Also these cars would be in the race of the Car of the Year award.

Top selling Hatchbacks of 2016 –

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Top selling Sedans of 2016 –

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Top selling UVs (MUVs/SUVs) of 2016 –

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And the Auto Punditz car of the year award goes to – MARUTI NEXA BALENO!!! Baleno was instrumental in establishing Nexa network in India post the dismal sales of S-Cross. It sold over a lakh units in past 12 months and gave a really tough competition to the segment leader i20 (it even outsold i20 if you remove the i20 active numbers!). The product even as of date commands a waiting period of over 3 months and is still sold without any discounts! It created a benchmark in terms of features that a Maruti car can offer and stood the test of time. See how crucial Baleno was for Nexa’s success in India –

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We have made a comparison of how valuable a product had been to the overall OEM’s sales numbers and Baleno topped the list – with over 66% contribution to Nexa’s volumes in India it in a way ensured that the viability of Nexa showrooms in India. Though the car was launched in the last quarter of 2015; we would name it Car of the Year 2016 because the sales assessment for the model was not done in 2015 CY (also unfortunately missed by major Auto Journalists/TV Shows).

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Auto Punditz Car of the Year 2016

Product Feature : Maruti Ignis

With this feature, we will start covering all New Product Launches by highlighting the product offering in detail.

Ignis

The Suzuki Ignis internationally is a subcompact car that was produced by Suzuki between 2000 and 2008, replacing the Suzuki Cultus, and subsequently as a small crossover from 2016. The first gen Ignis looked something like this –

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The Ignis version launched in India was codenamed as FF21S and was initially shown as a concept in Geneva Motorshow on 3rd Mar’15 by the name iM-4. However, the production version was launched in Japan a year back itself (on 21 Jan’16). The Indian spec Ignis has got the same engine like the Swift, however the body weight of the Ignis is lesser. This is due to the use of an all new platform. The company has confirmed that it is a modular platform and more engines shall be made on it. There will be other new vehicles that will be made on this platform.

Suzuki has developed the Ignis by taking inspiration from a lot of its existing/previous models. See the Trivia here:

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Maruti is terming the Ignis as a Premium Urban Compact Vehicle. To be honest, the first vehicle to explore this category (ultra compact SUV hatchback) was the Mahindra’s KUV. Seeing Indian love for the SUV design; Maruti thought of leveraging the space with Ignis. KUV100 has got decent response in the Indian market and has sold over 40k units in past 1 year (avg of 3346/month). We are sure Ignis should easily register twice the sales of that of KUV’s.

Ignis has been launched in 1.2L Petrol MT/AMT & 1.3L Diesel MT/AMT variant in India. It will be sold through Nexa Dealership Network in India. The petrol variant of the vehicle has been introduced at an ex-showroom price (New Delhi) of Rs 4.59 lakh and the diesel variant from Rs 6.39 lakh onwards. The other category — automated manual transmission — for the petrol powered model starts at a price of Rs 5.74 lakh while the diesel fuelled car comes with at a starting price tage of Rs 6.94 lakh. Price Table:

Ignis

Fuel Efficiency Figures:

Ignis

Tech Specs:

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Exterior Highlights:

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Also Include –

  • Body Colored Door Handles
  • Body Colored ORVMs
  • Antenna

Interiors, Comfort & Convenience Highlights:

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Also include –

  • Air Conditioner with Heater
  • Cup Holder/Bottle Holder
  • 12 V Accessory Socket
  • Tilt Steering
  • Front Power Windows
  • Auto Down Driver Power Window
  • Foot Rest

Safety Highlights:

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Also include –

  • ISOFIX Child Seat Anchorages
  • Seat Belt Pre-tensioners with Force Limiters
  • Pedestrian Protection

Color Lineup:

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Total 6 Exterior Colors, 3 Dual Exterior Colors & 3 Interior Color Combination in Lineup

Indian Car Sales Figures – December 2016

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Snapshot:

  • Chevrolet’s Enjoy crosses 1,000 for the second time in this year. It also overtook the breadwinners (Tavera & Beat) for Chevy. The rationalization of price for this model has worked well and the result is visible. (PS: We suspect majority of the Enjoy’s being sold in Taxis as well)
  • Fiat is yet again clueless on its strategy and is finding it extremely hard to sustain whatever volumes it’s currently doing. Recently they have announced a revision on the prices of Punto Evo & Linea – While both the products will offer attractive price proposition; consumer acceptance will still remain a challenge.
  • Ford’s Aspire did the highest numbers in Dec’16 in this calendar year! But Ecosport’s dip is beyond understanding. Also Endeavor posted its all-time highest sales. Quite a confusing month from Ford!
  • BRV’s volume jumped 4 times in Dec’16 compared to Nov’16. Honda had announced offers upto Rs.1 Lakh on the BRV in Dec’16 – we expect the deal saved the day for Honda. Amaze has started doing well for the Japanese car maker and overtook City’s volumes in Dec’16. However, with the updated City in pipeline we foresee the marquee to jump back to dominance in coming months.
  • Nissan still doesn’t seem ‘redi’ for the Indian market. While Kwid is working wonders for Renault, its cousin Redi-GO seems to be failing.
  • Tata is now doing good with Zest & Tiago. But, the volume sellers – Indica and Indigo have scaled down significantly. Tata’s need to realize that all cylinder’s have to fire to extract best performance (i.e. all models have to do good numbers).

A look at Top 25 selling brands –

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11 out of Top 25 belong from Maruti+Nexa –

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December 2016 Car Sales – Snapshot

Highlights –

  • Industry de-grew by 1.5%. December generally a good month for Automobile OEMs; this time couldn’t perform as per expectations. 2 main reasons to be attributed for this – Mr. Modi & Maruti. While the market is still reeling under ‘Demonitization’ effect; Maruti’s drop defined the industry degrowth as well. Hyundai’s YoY performance was similar to that of Maruti as well (-4.3%).
  • Luxury Brands are under ‘tremendous pressure‘. The segment has literally taken a beating – First with the TCS (Tax Collected from Source) and now government’s policy of scrutinizing every luxury car purchase (after demonitization). The buyers in the segment are literally scared to finalize their purchase. Otherwise, December used to be a blockbuster month for luxury cars (as discounts are the highest in this segment in this month).
  • Even with a YoY growth of over 34%; Tata could rank only 6th in the Top OEM table. Mahindra, Toyota & Renault are strongly holding onto their fort and only Hexa can push the Indian OEM back into the Top 3 in Jan’17!

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