Tata Motors to offer free fuel on new purchases

Written by Yogima Seth | New Delhi, Jan 27 | Updated: Jan 28 2008, 04:53am hrs
Despite hike in prices, car buyers have no reason to postpone their purchase with companies lining up offers that are too good to resist. While, homegrown Tata Motors has come up with free fuel offer on all new purchases, the countrys largest car manufacturer Maruti Suzuki is offering gift vouchers ranging between Rs 5,000 and Rs 35,000 in northern India and General Motors has come up with add-on features in its luxury sedan.

With signs of easing interest rates in near future, car manufacturers are going out all the way to woo customers who were mulling to postpone their purchase till budget after all major manufacturers hiked prices at the beginning of 2008 citing high input costs, says an auto analyst.

Tata Motors has recently tied up with Hindustan Petroleum Corporation to offer free fuel ranging between Rs 10,000-Rs 20,000 up to one year to all new buyers of Tata (Indica and some model of Tata Indigo) and Fiat cars, across Delhi and the national capital region. While, it may be a promotional scheme for the company, industry experts also see it as an aggressive effort to boost sales after a negative growth has been witnessed by the company in December.

Lately, Tata has been losing pace in the passenger car industry due to not so attractive products in the segment. No wonder, the company is trying all such measures to win back customers, says an industry expert. The company posted a dip of 14.2% at 10,876 units in December 2007 as compared to 12,672 units sold during the same month in 2006. This is against a positive growth of 8.9% in the passenger car industry during December.

Even General Motor India that has grown by 141% in December (though on a smaller base) is also betting on offers to continue the growth momentum. The company is offering a free GPS navigation system in its luxury sedan Optra, along with free insurance as well as maintenance on other models. Add-on features like this creates excitement across a luxury brand and ensures that it stands out from its peers in the same category, says Ankush Arora, vice president, GM India.