But the industry is growing and right from German automakers to Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai, all have been on a launching spree this year. Where Tata Motors announced launching of new cars Zest and Bolt, Fiat introduced its new Linea, while there were Mercedes-Benz S Class, Audi RS7 and BMW X5 from the German auto giants.
Here we shortlist top five cars launched in the past six months based on their high impact on the Indian auto industry.
Honda City was one of the biggest launches in the 2014. Announced last year in November, the car was launched in the last few days of December, 2013. The fourth generation model for India came in a new avatar. Right from the day of launch, it has been creating turmoil in the market. It now comes modified inside-out with major mechanical changes, all which have contributed in changing the sales numbers of the C-segment. Launched at the staggering price tag of INR 7.42 lakh for the base petrol. This time the new City was also offered with a diesel variant, given that its sibling Amaze was a breakthrough success in the diesel line-up. City once again grabbed the top-spot in the segment by registering over 38,000 units in the first five months with an average of 7,633 units per month. It still attracts a waiting period of 4-8 weeks.
Maruti Suzuki Celerio
Maruti with the launch of Celerio has once again proved its mettle. Launched at the Auto Expo at a mouth watering price of INR 3.90 lakh, Celerio crossed 32,000 bookings within two months of the time frame. It helped the company to gain a market share of 44.6 percent which further strengthened its position in India. The tremendous response was due to the new Automated-Manual-Transmission (AMT) system, introduced for the first time in the market. Over 51 percent bookings were registered for the AMT variant, the demand for which is increasing day-by-day extending the waiting period to 4-5 months. Maruti is trying hard in a bid to meet the demands by increasing the production to upto 10,000 units per month.
Indias no.2 passenger carmaker and largest exporter launched its debut compact sedan with a price tag of INR 4.66 lakh. Though concerning its position in the market, Hyundai was not apprehended by Swift Dzire and Honda Amaze. The fact can be seen that within three months of its launch, it toppled Honda Amaze from the second spot. It carries the roots of its sibling Grand i10 hatch, which was also mated with similar response. Xcent comes with segment first features like rear AC vents and 1GB music storage, which were first introduced in the Grand i10 hatch. Both these cars together drove the overall sales of the company to a profit of 12.8 percent. Xcent recorded 1,716 units in the dbutante month, 6,663 units in April and 7,792 units in May 2014. Still it is getting heated response, attracting a waiting period of 8 weeks.
Nissan revived Datsun to target the emerging markets of the world. Datsun GO hatch was the first offering in this respect. Launched at a price tag of INR 3.12 lakhs, the small car till date performed average in the market. Though a new brand, people have started reacting with sales reaching 6,800 units in the first three months of launch, including 2,068 units in the debut month. The car is actually pitted against Alto 800 and Hyundai Eon, the small car segment is ruled by the top automakers, it has a long way to go.
Last but not the least, Ford recently launched the facelift of its C-segment contender Fiesta with a price tag of INR 7.69 lakh. The Blue Oval company has altered the face and given a new infotainment system to the car to attract buyers. This time it is only available in diesel motor with three different variants to choose from. The diesel engine returns an excellent fuel economy of 25.01kmpl, second to Honda City in the segment. Lets see if the new updated model could churn up sales numbers.
Apart from all the above mentioned, Toyota also launched a couple of cars in the market. They launched anew Crossover based on Etios - Etios Cross with a price tag of INR5.76 lakhs. The car will compete against Volkswagen Polo Cross in the segment. Toyota also launched its superhit Corolla in a new avatar. The 11th generation model which has been already creating success story in the home town and other markets was launched at a competitive price tag of INR 11.99 lakhs. Besides all this, there are lot more surprises in this year where upcoming union budget is likely to shower some goodies on the reeling auto industry and a horde of new cars to be uncovered soon. Just wait and watch!