Honda trying to make ‘Civic’ sense!

Honda Civic – The legend makes a comeback to the sub-continent!

Entry-D segment has seen a dramatic change in recent years; a lot of customers in this segment have been wooed off to bigger SUVs or have upgraded to the Big 3 German sedans. The dwindling volumes in this segment ensured that the OEMs slowly move out their offerings from the segment or avoid investment to get in new models in the category. However; Honda has taken a bold stance and re-enter the segment with it’s globally best-selling nameplate – The Civic. Going to be launched in the 10th Generation Avatar; the 2019 Civic should have two engine-gearbox combinations – a 141hp, 1.8-litre naturally aspirated petrol and a 120hp, 1.6-litre diesel engine. The Technical Specifications for the New Civic is as shown below:

Source: Autocar

The upcoming Civic should be feature loaded and have all the goodies that is currently available in the rival cars. Features like dual-zone climate control, a powered sunroof, a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment display (Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatible), an eight-way power adjustable driver’s seat and a smart key (which can also be used to turn the engine on and off, operate the sunroof and power windows and open the boot) are standard. Other kit on the new Civic include push-button start, automatic wipers and a fully-digital 7.0-inch MID in the instrument cluster that displays information including access to a connected smartphone’s phone book, call history and music, along with average fuel efficiency and the distance to empty meter. The instrument cluster also has displays for a seat-belt reminder and a door opening alert.

With so much preparation by Honda to launch the New Civic; the biggest question is – Kitna Bikegi? (How many units shall it sell?)

Before answering the question; let’s assess the global scenario for the Civic Marque – Initially gaining a reputation for being fuel-efficient, reliable, and environmentally friendly, later iterations have become known for performance and sportiness. US contributes to 40% of the Civic sold internationally! Almost 11.5 million units of Civic has been sold in US alone in the past 46 years (since 1973). In 2018; More than 27k units of Civic was sold every month! (Almost double the Honda India’s volumes). The US historical sales data for Civic is as shown –

Source: Wikipedia

If you note that over the years; the volume of Civic has gradually increased signifying the consumers acceptance of the car and probably also means that other cars in the segment are faring equally well (let’s not forget world’s best seller Corolla too).

Civic Sales Statistics – India

The 8th Generation Civic sold 54,821 units during its lifetime in India. The highest number of Civics were sold in the year 2007.

However; things have changed dramatically here in the subcontinent. To get an exact picture; we have taken the comparison sales of 2 years – 2007 (which recorded highest number of Civics sold in India) and 2018 (for understanding the latest scenario). The analysis shows –

While 40,992 cars were sold in the segment for the year 2007 (average of 3,416 cars per month); the sales for the segment dropped to 6,014 cars in 2018 (average of 501 cars per month). While we do not see the hopes of any revival for Optra & Laura; we anticipate Civic to sell ~50% of what it was selling in 2007. Going by our assessment; we predict Civic to do an average of 700 units/month. However; India is a price sensitive market and Honda has to be extremely aggressive in the launch pricing to make a significant impact and bring traction back into the dying segment.

The Era of ‘Discounts Marketing’!

Yesterday; we published an article highlighting the magnitude of discounts being offered on the purchase of a new car by the OEMs. While we were astonished the amount of money being pumped in by all auto manufacturers to acquire new customers; we were also surprised that these discounts were also aggressively promoted on the media platforms (say Newspapers, E-mailers, etc). We have collated the paper ads released by these OEMs recently to highlight the matter –

Maruti Suzuki Arena – 

Ad Communication – 

Get Fantastic Offers of your Favourite Maruti Suzuki Cars throughout this month!

  • Offers upto Rs.63,100 on Celerio, Rs.58,100 on CelerioX, Rs.58,000 on Dzire, Rs.47,100 on Alto K10, Rs.45,000 on Brezza, Rs.43,000 on Swift, Rs.37,100 on Alto 800 & Rs.22,000 on Eeco

Ad Communication – 

Take home the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza with the Auto Gear Shift for a smooth and easy drive.

  • Save upto Rs.45,000

Nexa – 

Scheme Communication – 

  • Upgrade to Ciaz and get exciting offers upto Rs.75,000/-*

Scheme Communication – 

  • Never Before Seen Consumer Offer, Exchange Bonus and Corporate Offer Up to Rs.80,000/-*

(*Consumer Offer Rs.45,000 + Exchange Offer Rs.25,000 + Corporate Offer Rs.10,000)

Hyundai – 

Ad Communication – 

This February Get Exciting Offers of your Favourite Hyundai Cars !

  • Offers upto Rs.85,000 on Grand i10, Rs.90,000 on Xcent, Rs.50,000 on Elite i20 & Active, Rs.50,000 on Verna, Rs.1,30,000 on Elantra & Rs.1,30,000 on Tucson

Tata Motors – 

Ad Communication – 

FABULOUS FEB – Best Offers of 2018 – Now Even Better!

  • Offers upto Rs.1,06,000 on Hexa, Rs.75,000 on Nexon, Rs.50,000 on Tiago & Rs.58,000 on Tigor

Honda – 

Ad Communication – 

It’s the Best Time to Buy the All New Amaze & WR-V

  • Offers upto Rs.42,000 on Amaze, Rs.42,000 on WR-V, Rs.1,00,000 on BR-V, Rs.72,000 on City, Rs,45,000 & Rs.19,000 on Brio

Mahindra – 

  • Offers upto Rs.49,000 on the XUV500

Renault – 

  • Low EMI of Rs.3,999 + Benefits upto Rs.45,000 on the Kwid

Jeep –

  • Now available with Benefits of Rs.60,000 and more on Select Variants of Jeep Compass

Mercedes –

  • EMI of Rs.59,999 + Exchange Bonus of Rs.1.5 Lacs + 3 Years Maintenance Package + Assured Buy Back

Gone are the era of so called ‘creative’ or ‘content’ advertising. Discounts have taken over all advertising levels and honestly we are not happy to see this.

Deals / Discounts / Offers on New Cars – February 2019


Offers on Maruti Cars
Offers on Nexa Cars


Offers on Hyundai Cars


Offers on Mahindra Cars


Offers on Tata Cars


Offers on Honda Cars


Offers on Ford Cars


Offers on Toyota Cars


Offers on VW Cars


Offers on Nissan Cars
Offers on Datsun Cars

Indian Automotive Retail Figures – January 2019

FADA (Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations) released the January 2019 Vehicle Registrations statistics. Pl note that these are the vehicle registration data (delivery of Invoiced vehicles from dealers to end customers) and clearly indicates the vehicle sales movement. Otherwise we have always been tracking the vehicle offtake data (billing of vehicles from OEM to authorized dealers). As usual; we thank FADA for publishing the retail data and providing much realistic data about the actual sales of vehicles.

As seen above; all categories (PVs, 2Ws, 3Ws and CVs) saw positive sales growth — with total sales touching 15,65,150 units and the overall automotive industry a growth of 8.5 percent.

The passenger vehicle (PV) retail sales in the month was 2,71,395 units which was +34% MoM, compared to 202,585 units in December 2018. All thanks to the extensive discounts offered by all OEMs as part of liquidation of year end stocks. Do note that the OEMs have spiked up the discounts in the past 2 months for gaining traction.

Ashish Kale, president of FADA had released a statement mentioning, “As predicted, healthy inquiry levels seen in December finally showed signs of conversions with the year-end offers continuing in January, especially by PV OEMs which has helped the customer in making the final purchase. Consumers interest, which had remained buoyant has slowly but surely started converting to sales in better percentages. Although all the sectors on a monthly basis have shown signs of positive growth, 2W growth rates are not at a healthy high and are seen positive due to a huge de-growth in December. CV growth is flat and has substantially dropped from the high growth rate it had maintained through year to date.”

Honda City emerges as the Best Selling Sedan of Jan’19

  • After a long gap; Honda gets the Top Slot in the Best Selling Sedan category. Do note that Honda fared 3rd in the segment for the year 2018. City was the clear winner and sold over 1,600 units more than the second ranked Hyundai’s Verna.
  • Ciaz toppled to Third position in Jan’19. Nexa in overall is dealing with sluggish sales and Ciaz’s reducing numbers is adding to its woes. Do note that Ciaz sold 5,062 units in Jan’18 v/s 2,934 units sold in last month.
  • Yaris is thrown out of the Top 5 selling cars in the category. Seeing a Toyota badged vehicle sell lesser than the Skoda & VW is a big blow to the Japanese conglomerate.

XUV 300 Specifications_Revealed

Specification Chart – XUV 300

Mahindra XUV300 is slated to be launched on 14th Feb and it shall be the most important launch from M&M for the year. With this model Mahindra would want to re-establish its dominance in the SUV segment. The Compact-SUV space has caught up really well in the sub-continent and currently almost all OEMs are gunning to get a pie from this segment. M&M had burnt its fingers in the segment with the earlier offerings (Quanto, Nuvosport); however it is leaving no stone unturned this time to offer a product that could be touted as a benchmark in the segment. By seeing the features; it is surely raising a lot of eyeballs for the right reasons – The offering shall undoubtedly be the most feature rich product in the segment!

The XUV300 will be offered with a 1.2-litre petrol engine (110 BHP) and a 1.5-litre diesel (115 BHP). Both engine options are expected to be offered with a six-speed manual.

Variant-wise feature breakup (source: TheGadgetSpy)

Mahindra XUV300 W4
This is the base variant for the compact SUV and there seems to be quite a bit kit on offer at this level. The list comprises the following.
-Audio system with 3.5-inch display and four speakers (diesel only)
-Dual front airbags with ISOFIX child seat mounting points
-Electrically adjustable ORVMs
-Gearshift indicator
-Steering modes
-16-inch steel wheels
-Body coloured bumpers, door handles and mirrors

Mahindra XUV300 W6 variant
This is the mid-level variant for the XUV300 and in addition to the features of the base W4 variant, you also get the following.
-Keyless entry
-Steering mounted controls
-Wheel caps
-Silver finish on the grille
-Door cladding
-Black roof rails
-Spoiler with stop lamp

Mahindra XUV300 W8 variant
This is the top spec model for the compact SUV. Mahindra has really loaded up the vehicle in terms of features.
-Button start
-7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with navigation/Apple CarPlay/Android Auto
-Leather wrap for steering wheel
-ESP with hill hold, start-stop function,
-Dual zone climate control
-Cruise Control
-Reverse camera with guidelines
-Six-way adjustable driver’s seat
-Auto headlamps
-Electrically folding mirrors
-Mood lighting
-Heated mirrors
-17-inch alloy wheels
-Projector headlamps with LED DRLs
-Silver front and rear skids plates

Mahindra XUV300 W8 (O)
This is an optional variant for the top-of-the-line W8 model and adds some more safety features as well as cosmetic options over the W8 variant.
-Knee and side airbags
-Leatherette interiors
-Auto dimming IRVM
-Tyre pressure monitoring system
-Front parking sensors
-17-inch diamond cut alloy wheels
-Dual tone roof rails

Top 10 Selling Cars of January 2019

The Top 10 cars sold 1,42,730 units which was ~52% of the overall car sales in January 2019! Do note that 82 models are on sale in the Indian market as on date and the contribution of Top 10 denotes the affinity of Indian consumers towards the fast selling models. As a matter of fact; Top 25 models contributed ~85% of car sales!

  • The top 10 cars had 7 models from Maruti & 3 from Hyundai
  • The Top 5 Ranks were dominated by Maruti models
  • Alto again took the Top Slot and was the Best Selling Car in India for January 2019
  • Dzire came 2nd in Ranking and sold 19,073 units; while its sibling Swift sold 18,795 units.
  • Maruti has efficiently utilized the Heartect Platform on majority of its cars – Swift, Dzire, Baleno & now Wagon R all based on the same platform. This enables Maruti to attain high levels of cost efficiency that it has always been famous for.
  • i20 was the best selling Hyundai for January 2019 and stood 6th in the Best Selling Cars list! It was followed by Grand i10 & Creta which ranked 7th & 8th respectively.
  • However; Santro was missing from the list. Will it be able to fare in the list in coming months?

January 2019 Car Sales – Snapshot

The Passenger Car Sales degrew -1.8% in Jan’19 v/s Jan’18. Due to muted demand and weak consumer sentiment; the Industry is under consistent pressure and last few months have been very challenging. Even though Jan’19 had 3 bigh-ticket launches – Wagon R, Harrier and Kicks; their contribution to the respective OEM volumes wasn’t significant. It is even worrisome to imagine the condition without these new launches. It was also very disappointing to see that there were no major announcements in today’s budget that could have supported the Auto Sector.

Let’s see how the OEMs fared in Jan’19 –

  • The Top 4 OEMs posted a positive / flat YoY growth in Jan’19.
  • Maruti Suzuki reported a meager 0.2 per cent increase in its domestic sales at 1,39,440 units in Jan’19 v/s 1,39,189 cars sold in Jan’18.
  • Nexa seems to be struggling while it reported a -25% degrowth in YoY sales. Even with the launch of New Baleno; Nexa wasn’t able to recover the volumes and post a positive growth.
  • Hyundai could grow 1% in Jan’19 v/s the same period last year. Even post Santro launch; Hyundai hasn’t gained significant numbers. However; Santro has helped Hyundai survive in tough times and maintain its volumes.
  • Honda pips Tata as the 4th Biggest OEM for Jan’19! Honda has registered the highest YoY growth of 23% in Jan’19! Amaze has done wonders for the Japanese OEM and helped it gain considerable volume since launch.
  • Tata posted a degrowth of -13% even post the Harrier launch.

How the Market Shares fluctuated in Jan’19 v/s Jan’18 –

  • Maruti was again successful in garnering >50% Market Share. The Market Share has grown by 1% YoY
  • Tata has lost the highest Market Share at -0.8%.

Indian Cars Making A Splash In The West

Indian automakers are starting to gain mindshare of the western audience with their products. The Tata Nexon recently scored full five stars in the Global New Car Assessment Program and became the first made-in-India car to do so.

The world’s largest auto show is in the books now. The 2019 North American International Auto Show of Detroit introduced us to the long-awaited and longer-rumored Toyota Supra. But the car that impressed the Jalopnik editor, Jason Torchinsky, was the Mahindra Marazzo.
This wagon became India’s car of the year 2018 in Team-BHP’s polls by a huge margin. And now, it’s winning enthusiasts at the world’s automotive capital. Jason called it the most interesting car at the Detroit auto show and for good reason. The Marazzo is indeed a unique thing. It’s the only front-wheel drive car in India (and probably in the world) with ladder frame underpinnings. Driving the front wheels is efficient and helps with the fuel efficiency figure. And a ladder frame is rugged-enough to take the abuse a people-carrier is expected to deal with on Indian “roads.” The packaging also helps eliminate the floor hump and liberate a good amount of space in the second and third rows.

Speaking of Indian cars with clever packaging that impressed Jason, Tata Nano. The automotive blog reviewed a 10-year old Tata Nano and called it an engineering triumph. The Nano and the Mahindra Roxor were also listed as one of the best cars Jalopnik staff had reviewed in 2018; sharing the space with the Tesla Model 3 and Mazda Miata.
Here’s an excerpt from the review:
“I’m delighted to report that this, the cheapest new car you can buy in the world, does its job. Really, it does its job much better than it has any right to, considering the absurdly low cost of this thing.
It is an absolute design and engineering triumph. I don’t care that it’s not selling well in India. That doesn’t faze me a bit. I don’t care because the end result is an absolutely ingenious design.
The Bugatti Chiron is a joke next to the design and engineering of the Nano. The Nano is an engineering triumph, and the Chiron is an engineering stunt.
The Nano is the true spiritual heir of what the original Volkswagen Beetle, Citroën 2Cv, BMC Mini, and Ford Model T strove to be. I can think of no higher praise than that.”