Does Product Life Cycle means anything in the Indian Automotive Space?
‘Tried & Tested’ – the most important attribute affecting the purchase decision of Indian consumer. Don’t believe me? – have you ever seen the santros, the indicas, the altos and the boleros proudly plying on Indian roads and with increased numbers everytime you step on road. Maruti 800 still is sought after by many Indian homes and we do not see any automobile replacing its legacy.
Product Life Cycle defines that at a certain age the product grows to its peak, later it reaches saturation level and after some time it slowly phases out of the market. When you analyse this theory in the Indian automotive industry, you surely would be amazed by the uniqueness – consider Mahindras ‘Bolero’ which was launched over 12 years back still manages to easily outperform its young competitors. The story ain’t very different in case of Maruti’s Alto as well – launched way back in 2000 and emerges as the world’s best selling car in 2011!
I have seen a person purchase a Hyundai Santro 3 times in his life! Every time he liquidates his old Santro – no other brand makes space in his consideration set else than a Santro again. And this ain’t a special case – many Indian households have the same story.
But anythings changed recently? With over 30 new launches in past 2 years and many international OEMs jumping the bandwagon – has given a plethora of choices to the Indian consumer. Gone are the days where we had only padmini’s, 800’s or amby’s available in the kitty. You and me are now spoilt for choices – and boy we love new cars! The younger generation is demanding freshness and novelty – this would spark and make the game more competitive. Can this change the nature of the Indian automotive scenario? – I say YES.