RIP – Ritz in Peace!

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Maruti Suzuki Ritz was internationally known as the Suzuki Splash. It was jointly developed by Suzuki Motor Corporation and Adam Opel AG. The name Splash was dropped in India as it was already registered by Ford (though we haven’t seen any Ford Splash yet!). The car was launched in India in the year 2009 and was recently in 2016 Maruti guys decided to discontinue the model in the sub-continent. Some interesting history about the compact car –

  • This car has been yet another success for Maruti, with more than 200,000 Ritz on Indian roads within the first 37 months of release, all this without the support of any sort of advertisement campaign.
  • Ritz was launched as a direct competition to Hyundai’s i10. However, the Korean product always had an edge due to much premium interiors.
  • Off-late, with both Petrol & Diesel Avatars the car couldn’t sell as per Suzuki’s expectation and has been phased out gradually in international markets. It was discontinued in Europe in late 2014, being replaced with the new Suzuki Celerio (starting from the summer of 2015). It was also discontinued in Indonesia in June 2016.
  • In India, we expect the Ignis to replace Ritz in the portfolio. Ignis will be made available in the Indian market during Jan-Mar 2017 timeframe.
  • Maruti tried the best to sustain the model – even the Ritz Tour was launched as a mid-life effort to hike the numbers. However, the strategies did not give the desired result.

Maruti Ritz was an extremely practical car and looked smart as well. However, the sales numbers had never been ‘magical’ enough for Maruti. We present the sales statistics for the model since its inception:

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  • Ritz garnered its all time high-volume in the first month of its launch! It could never cross >8k sales numbers post May 2009. Also it could touch >7k units sales only thrice in its lifetime.
  • We have seen  a trend where Maruti Suzuki discontinues a model if its sales drop below 2k units consistently. The trend was earlier seen in A-star and Zen Estilo. Maybe the model isn’t viable enough to the manufacturer?
  • Even the diesel offering wasn’t lucrative enough for the buyers. The petrol-only Wagon R sells phenomenally more than the Ritz!
  • Even though Ritz sales was less than Maruti’s expectations – Its average sales was more than the overall sales of several OEMs in India (Ex: GM, Skoda, Fiat, etc)!
  • Ritz sold 3,58,631 units in the Indian subcontinent till date!

We at Auto Punditz wish a dignified farewell to the brand and wish the upcoming Ignis the best. Hope Ignis is capable enough to stand on the Indian consumers expectations and build a name for itself.

‘UV’ology – Segment back in action

SUVs & MUVs have picked up pace again and are driving the growth story for the industry this year. The segment has grown a whopping 98% YoY; whereas the overall Auto Industry grew 11%. Significant volumes were added from the offerings of two biggest OEMs of the subcontinent – Maruti (Brezza) & Hyundai (Creta). Surprising is Brezza’s volumes with only Diesel offering as of now! See how the segment has grown –

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Maruti Launched Vitara Brezza in March this year and from the Launch till now company has seen the tremendous success for its first Sub 4 meter SUV. It has become one of the most successful launches – Maruti Suzuki’s first compact SUV has been the best-selling utility vehicle in the first five months of this financial year.

Maruti Suzuki sold 41,484 units of the Vitara Brezza during the April-August duration to grab the Top position in utility vehicle segment.

Only available in diesel so far, whereas others available SUVs which are in competition has both of the Engine options. Creta comes with both engine options, despite the fact that reaching to top position with only diesel engine is really a good job, as we also have seen the shift in diesel and petrol figures due to Market sentiment and Strictness over Diesel Norms, if we analyse its goes against the Brezza, however, Maruti Suzuki is also planning to launch a petrol engine in Brezza to further strengthen its top Position. Also an AMT version is planned shortly.

With sale of 39,088 units Creta has got the 2nd Place, following Innova Crysta (the third best-seller with 35693 Nos). Mahindra sold 22,673 Boleros, this all-time best selling SUV lost numbers from rising competition in this segment and settled on 4th position this time. Let’s see how launch of Bolero power plus will bring additional Numbers to Mahindra?

However, Ford Managed to sell good number of EcoSport and sold 21, 564 units of the EcoSport during April-August 2016, and another Mahindra SUV sealed the sixth position with sales figures of 19,354 units. Statistics is as mentioned:

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