Hyundai Grand i10 to re-ignite small car battle
The Indian automobile market is probably one of the toughest markets in the world to truly understand due to the vastly diversified customer base and today thanks to the economic uncertainty difficult for all - from car maker to car consumer! Amongst the various segments, however, the most cutthroat happens to be at the lower end of the spectrum where the Hatchbacks proliferate.
While this segment has grown over the years to include entry level hatchbacks, premium hatchbacks and is currently witnessing the spawning of the premium-entry level hatchback, the fact remains that getting a product right for this segment is probably the toughest for any car manufacturer.
Having said that, on the face of it Maruti Suzuki seems to have made it an art form and in doing so, has dominated this space. Others have vied for a substantial piece of the pie for one reason or many they haven't been able to nudge the segment leader which has models price-positioned at every Rs 25,000 incremental step from Rs 2.50 lakhs upwards.
It is therefore easy to see why Maruti-Suzuki wins with its pricing policy but it is more than price for it has a diverse range of models overlapping these very price points so that the consumer has the requisite choice. This is what Hyundai seems to be working on and having been the only car maker to have come close to giving the market leader cause for concern, it is now ready to play the same game but with even more appeal and firepower.
The appeal and the firepower now comes in the shape of a product with the potential to hurt if not cripple the market leader, especially in the B-segment where so much action takes place. It hasn't been a secret that Hyundai needed to have an upgrade or at best an all new evolution of its best selling i10 which now has had a life span in its present form of close to seven years.
This i10 upgrade or evolution went by the project code name BA and many thought it would be a car to bridge between the present i10 and i20 models. Well this is both true and false. False because this is indeed the next i10 but being India we still see merit in not throwing away a package already established but more importantly amortised over the last seven years. Just like Skoda has made it with its Octavia and Laura the same song will be played out here as well.
Also Read: Hyundai Grand i10 to launch on September 3