Volvo XC40 Luxury Crossover Launched in India!

The introductory price of the Volvo XC40 is Rs 39.9 lakh ex-showroom for the fully-loaded R-Design variant with a diesel engine. According to the senior officials, this pricing is not sustainable so a revision is expected soon. The timeframe for the price hike is not decided yet and neither is the final price tag that’ll make this crossover profitable for the company.
Impossibly Affordable
For now, Volvo appear to have put their margins on the line as there’s no way the XC40 can undercut its locally-assembled rivals while being a CBU import. Local assembly will help cut those losses while a price revision will make it profitable. But, all that will depend on the volumes this crossover can bring in. Volvo may even speed up to get the local assembly commenced if the demand justifies. The local assembly of the XC60 will begin this quarter and, given the strong demand for SUVs and crossovers, we believe the XC40 won’t stay on the CBU path for long.
The compact luxury SUV segment is said to be the most lucrative of all churning out ~6,000 units per year in India. That’s a big pie and even a small slice of that will result in a sizable growth for the Swedish carmaker.
Flexible Frame Can Take A Variety Of Powertrains
The newest Volvo stands on the brand new Compact Modular Architecture platform — CMA for short. Just like the bigger SUVs’ SPA platform, this one is capable of accommodating a petrol engine, a diesel engine, or a petrol-hybrid engine with front-wheel drive as well as all-wheel drive. This will allow them to rapidly deploy hybrids should the need and/or demand arise.
New Parts Warehouse
Along with their most affordable luxury crossover, Volvo also announced that they now have a warehouse for spares in India. This will result in faster turnaround times for customers. At the same time, it benefits the dealers as they no longer have to worry about:
1. locking up their capital
2. holding the spares onsite
3. dealing with the customs and paperwork
New Dealerships This Year
By the end of this year, Volvo will have 5 more outlets, thus helping them expand their reach and add more customers to the Volvo family. The manufacturer has witnessed steady growth, both, in India and worldwide, since the redesigned models started hitting the showrooms. The trend is expected to continue as XC40 makes the brand even more accessible for buyers looking to stand out. The manufacturer delivered 5,71,577 units worldwide in 2017. With 3,17,639 models already moved this year, it looks like a target of 6.5 lakh units for 2018 is very much within reach.
Here’s a gist of XC40’s notable features:
– Biggest footprint in its class
– Boxy proportions for a rugged SUV look
– Best-in-class power and torque (190hp/400Nm)
– All-wheel drive is standard (Sourced from Haldex)
– Only diesel engine for now
– 8-speed automatic (Sourced from Aisin)
– Radar-based safety features
– Traffic sign recognition and warning if you exceed the speed limit
– Automatic full emergency braking
– Large animal detection
– Adaptive cruise control (maintains a safe distance from the vehicle in front and moves automatically; no acceleration of braking input required
– City traffic assist (Automatically manages the acceleration and braking at low speeds)
– Lane keep assist
– Semi-autonomous driving (On well-marked and open stretches of road, the XC40 can drive for short durations without requiring any driver inputs, not even for steering)
– Panoramic sunroof
(The article was contributed by our fellow pundit Mr. Mahesh Yadav)

Sales of Hatches, MUVs & Cross in June’18

Hatches win matches! – Yes, this rule holds true in the Indian Automotive space for the OEMs. Maruti has been successful with this strategy since day 1 and is still holding it’s fort. Even Hyundai has grown to this proportions with the success of its erstwhile Santro (which is planned to be relaunched), i10/Grand. Renault’s baby Kwid did big wonders to the company and even Tiago has elevated Tata to the No.3 Spot in the Top OEMs!

Let’s see how the hatches fared in June’18 –

Best selling hatches of June’18
  • Swift overtook Alto sales by over 100 units and was also the second best selling car of June’18
  • Grand i10 has now become the third best selling Hyundai and sells lesser than Creta/i20!!!
  • Tiago’s YoY growth was an impressive 53% and it’s evident that the hatch is more accepted than its rivals Celerio/Kwid.

Premium Hatchback Sales in June’18 –

  • Baleno with a YoY growth of 97% is the undoubted champion in the segment
  • i20 stands the test of time and still easily sells >10k units per month
  • Polo has now become an enthusiasts car and the numbers are limited accordingly
  • Jazz facelift is expected to be launched in July’17. Can it work wonders similar to the New Amaze?

Cross-Hatch sales in June’18 –

  • It is now a virtually dying segment and the volumes are consistently sloping down. However, Ford has made a bold move with Freestyle and what works for Freestyle is the ‘pricing’. Hope it continues to do more than 2.5k units average/month to sustain itself.

MUV sales in June’18 –

  • The most expensive offering in the segment is also the Best selling car in the segment! It is seldom this kind of scenario is seen in any category. However, only Toyota has the mettle to do so!
  • New Ertiga launch is on the cards and shall improve the sales even further for the marque.
  • Hexa sales is well below 1000 nos and is not as expected by the brand.

SUV Sales for June 2018

SUVs have been a craze in the Indian Passenger Vehicle space and almost all OEMs have an offering in the segment. To highlight the significance of the SUV segment – Kia & MG are planning to launch their first product on the Indian soil which shall be a SUV! Also though the overall Passenger cars sales grew by 37% in June’18; the SUV sales were up by an hefty 63!

As usual, value matters the most in the segment – Ex: Creta sold more than the much cheaper & smaller Brezza; similarly Fortuner & Endeavor sold more than the cheaper Captur! No wonder the Creta sibling shall be launched by Kia as Tusker (SP Concept) as their first model in the portfolio.

Let’s see the Top sellers in the Compact SUV & SUV space –

Best selling Compact SUVs
  • Brezza stands unbeatable in the segment and has made Maruti as a formidable player in the SUV space
  • Nexon overtook Ecosport & WRV to become the second best selling car in the Compact SUV segment
  • Even with TUV Plus, the overall sales for the marque was only 1811 units
Best Selling SUVs
  • The New Creta is now consistently on the Top 2 selling cars in the Hyundai’s portfolio!
  • S-Cross sales has jumped pretty significantly post the facelift and has now settled between 4-4.5k units
  • Compass sells more than the Duster – another example of how the consumers perceive value!
  • Tiguan sales have shot up – No specific reason on how it’s happened.

Sedan Sales for June 2018

Sedans have got sudden attention in the recent time  and a lot of promising launches happened in the past 2 months (from the Japs – Honda & Toyota). The 3-box car was an erstwhile favorite for the Indian consumers, but the SUV onslaught had slowed down its pace. However, the OEMs have not given up yet on the segment and the consumers are responding positively too for the new models. Let’s see how the models fared in the Compact Sedan & Sedan category –

Top selling Compact Sedans for June 2018
  • The No.1 selling car in India comes from this segment. The Desirability of Maruti’s Dzire is now unparalleled and the car registered a sales of impressive ~25k units in June!
  • Honda’s earnest effort has found good numbers of takers in the Indian Market and the Amaze has taken everyone by surprise with the volume garnered in the first 2 months of its launch. It registered an offtake of >9.1k units and it alone contributed to ~52% of Honda Cars sales in India for June’18!
  • Other models fared average and it clearly shows that the competition now shall be between Dzire v/s Amaze.

 

Top selling Sedans of June 2018
  • It is a roller-coaster ride for the models in this segment as the competition is the most fierce here. No one model has emerged as a clear winner in this category in 2018 & with Yaris the game has gone even tougher.
  • However, Verna emerged as the No.1 seller in the segment and it did close to ~4k units. It was just 19 units more than the next-best selling City.
  • Yaris is now showing initial signs of struggle and the sales have already dropped to <2k mark. Toyota needs to act fast to capitalize on the initial launch fanfare.
  • Ciaz sales sloped down to 1579 units in June’18 – It was particularly due to the upcoming Ciaz facelift. Nexa Ciaz is now gearing up to become a more formidable offering in the category.

Top 25 selling cars of June 2018

You may think on why we publish the Top 25 selling cars in a chronological order every month! To answer it – Out 91 passenger vehicle brands sold in June 2018; the Top 25 constituted 82% of overall sales! Also these models are extremely significant to their parent OEM – For Ex: Ecosport which is the 24th Best Selling car of June’18 contributes to ~47% of Ford India’s volumes! Similarly the Kwid which is the 17th Best selling car of last month, attributed to ~75% of Renault India’s volumes.

Let’s have a look at the Top 25 selling brands of June 2018 –

  • Dzire again tops the table with ~25k units shipped to the Maruti Arena dealers. It was over 6.2k units more than the second best seller Swift. Dzire is holding on to its fort and is trying to ward off the competition from the newly launched Honda Amaze.
  •  Alto drops to No.3 position and loses the 2nd spot to Swift. The entry-level hatch segment is under pressure and the players in the segment (Alto/Eon/Kwid) are struggling off late.
  • Baleno & Swift are almost at similar volumes and are satisfying both Arena & Nexa target audiences. Well played Maruti!
  • i20 bounces back as the best selling Hyundai by just a whisker! The Creta was just 151 units short of the i20. Grand slowly is losing the race.
  • Surprisingly, apart from Maruti & Hyundai we see a grand new entrant in the Top 10 – The New Honda Amaze. The Japanese OEM has tried everything possible to make this product a success and the same is reflecting in the volumes. The game now would be to consistently achieve the feat – shall the mighty Maruti allow it?
  • Tata’s best selling offering is the Tiago and ranks 11th in the table. The volumes for the model has stabilized ~8k units and looks promising.
  • There is only 1 Mahindra model in the Top 25 selling cars which is also the oldest model in its portfolio. The age old workhorse Bolero is still a devout performer. Who would have thought that the marque Bolero which was planned to be shelved due to its outdated design shall ring the sales counters at even this stage of its lifecycle!