The fight in the compact SUV segment is expected to be more intensified after Honda Cars India will launch its player BR-V on May 5.
Ruled by Hyundai Creta, Renault Duster, Mahindra Scorpio and Ford EcoSport, the segment has been growing around 35% for the past two years.
And with Maruti Suzuki’s sub-four metre SUV Vitara Brezza clocking well over 40,000 bookings since its launch on March 8, the segment’s popularity and the competition have grown manifold.
“This space which we are entering has been growing for last two years. The compact sports utility segment grew by over 40% last year. Customer traits are evolving as aspirations are going up,” Honda Cars India Ltd (HCIL) senior vice-president (Marketing and sales) Jnaneswar Sen told PTI.
“Success of a product depends on pricing, positioning and network. We will price it competitively, position it well and we have a growing network,” Sen said.
As of March 31, the company had a network of 295 outlets across the country.
The vehicle will come with premium interiors, high road clearance and powerful engine, Sen said.
“Though the exact pricing would be announced next month, one thing I can say right now is that we would price it very competitively,” he added.
The company would manufacture the SUV at its Tapukara plant in Rajasthan. Honda is in the process of expanding the production capacity of this facility from the current 1.2 lakh units per annum to 1.8 lakh units per annum.
When asked about the localisation level achieved on the product by the company, Sen said: “All our current vehicles, barring CR-V, have localisation levels beyond 90%. So it is going to be on similar lines for BR-V too.”
BR-V has already been launched in Indonesia and Thailand where it has been received well, he added.
On exports, the company is yet to come out with a concrete plan, Sen said.
Besides, BR-V, the company also plans to introduce Accord Hybrid during the festive season. It has already launched an updated version of its compact sedan Amaze last month.