Word has it that the capable yet slow-selling Toyota Yaris may be discontinued in the Indian market. The sedan has been barely selling in three digits when competition like the Skoda Rapid, Maruti Suzuki Ciaz have been selling decently well for their manufacturers. Instead of the Yaris, TKM might bring in a rebadged version of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz. Rebadged products have done Toyota a world of good in the Indian market. The Toyota Urban Cruiser, as well as Glanza, have been welcoming first-time buyers into the company’s showrooms. In fact, they have had quite a good response. Naveen Soni, senior vice president at TKM told Express Drives that “There is also an evident demand surge in rural markets and therefore, we would like to further expand our reach to smaller townships and rural India by tapping demand for our entry-level products like Glanza and the Urban Cruiser in such locations.”
Back to if the Yaris will be discontinued here, Naveen said,
We are committed to delivering the highest quality and providing complete customer satisfaction by way of our products and service offerings. Accordingly, we continue to sell the world-class sedan, Toyota Yaris, and cater to the market needs and consumer requirements. Further, as a part of Toyota’s product strategy, our practice is to continuously study and evaluate the market to understand the ever-changing needs, customer preferences, and trends. Beyond this, we won’t be able to share any specifics pertaining to our future business/product plans.
A politically correct statement it may be, but we believe that replacing the Yaris with Ciaz will be good in terms of scales of economy. The Yaris though is a premium product than the Maruti offering, with its USPs of giving three airbags as standard, with the higher-up trims getting seven. Plus, the Yaris has an electrically powered driver’s seat and a much superior CVT paired to its petrol engine. The Ciaz on the contrary continues with a 4-speed torque converter. The latter though could be roomier than the Yaris and a better chauffeur-driven option. Toyota has priced the Yaris at a premium wherein prices begin from Rs 9.16 lakh onwards. Discontinuing the Yaris and bringing in the rebadged Ciaz might not really be something that Toyota will be keen on doing in this scenario.
You see, both the Baleno and Vitara Brezza (Toyota didn’t have anything in this space before, except for the pseudo SUV – Etios Cross) were quite premium than what TKM offered before their entry. The Yaris is a much more feature-loaded option than the Ciaz and may be introducing the latter in its current avatar might backfire at TKM. At present, one can buy the Toyota Yaris with a hassle-free buyback option at 55 per cent of the value of the car after three years. There are many other discounts and offers that TKM dealerships are willing to offer on this sedan.
Well, what do you say? Will you pick a rebadged Maruti Suzuki Ciaz over the Toyota Yaris?
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