Czech carmaker Skoda Auto has reduced discounts on its cars in India during the festive season, when freebies are usually showered on customers, in a bid to cut its dependence on such market practices, a top company executive said.
Skoda Auto India, the fully-owned subsidiary of Skoda, has cut all discounts on its largest selling hatchback Fabia, while significantly reducing the discount margin on sedans like Rapid, Laura, Superb, and the Yeti SUV that it sells here.
"We are not going to increase discounts, but adopt a different strategy to sell our cars. We will keep our prices real without rendering any concessions. Though most of our cars would be more expensive than competition, we expect our superior brand and contemporary European technology to keep the sales momentum going," chief operating officer of Skoda India Sudhir Rao said.
Typically, the discounts are the highest during the festive season with all major carmakers including Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai India and Tata Motors proportionately increasing freebies to attract customers.
Maruti, the largest carmaker by sales, is offering Rs 35,000 discount on its popular models like the Alto; Tata Manza is stuffed with benefits worth Rs 75,000; while the Honda City is offering goodies up to Rs 50,000 to its potential customers. But the Skoda Rapid, which is pitted against City, is offering just a token discount of Rs 9,999.
"Ever after reducing discounts across all our cars, we have managed to consistently increase sales, which have proved our point till now. We have enjoyed customers' confidence and would decide our future strategy after assessing the performance during the festive period," Rao added. Skoda's sales have jumped 24% to 17,015 cars in the first six months of the fiscal in an otherwise slowing Indian car market.
The major rise came last month with sales booming 38% to 2,312 units even as car sales in India declined 5% to 1.57 lakh units year-on-year.
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