The rupee’s depreciation against the dollar has helped Maruti Suzuki India as the company’s maximum import exposure is in yen and its exports remain steady.
“It has helped us a little bit for two reasons. Our import is largely in yen. Yen depreciation against the dollar is much more than rupee depreciation. As for us, maximum import exposure is in yen, it has helped. Our import bills come down. Also, our exports remain steady and actually slightly higher. And for every dollar we earn, we are getting more rupees…That is also a little bit positive for us,” Maruti Suzuki India’s senior executive officer, marketing & sales Shashank Srivastava said, replying to a question on the sharp rupee depreciation. He was talking to mediapersons on the sidelines of the annual general meeting of Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry here on Thursday.
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He said the company is trying to bring down the cost of EVs by localisation of batteries and some components. Maruti is planning to introduce its first EV in FY24-25.
“We are of course figuring out the ecosystem for EVs. So, it is not about vehicle introduction, it is about whether the customers will have the convenience because right now the charging infrastructure is not so developed in India. Also, the cost of acquisition is very high. So, we have to bring the cost of EVs down and one of the ways to bring the cost down is to have localisation of batteries. And, that is what we are trying to do,” the senior executive officer said.
According to Srivastava, during the last three years, prices of entry-level vehicles have gone up faster due to some factors, and it has impacted the affordability of customers for this segment. “In the case of small cars, affordability factors came down because prices grow faster than the customers’ income level. Price elasticity for this segment is higher. Therefore, we have seen the segment coming down. It was about 45% of the industry, now it is about 38% of the industry, whereas the SUV segment, which was around 32% of the industry two years ago, now constitute around 40%,” he said.