Maruti to launch Eeco diesel mini van by 2016
Maruti Suzuki always knows how to attract Indian car buyers, which is made evident year after year by the paramount of market share it holds here. Further, to quench the thirst of rural market’s need for low cost transport vehicles, Maruti Suzuki is developing its own diesel engine to power its new LCV (CodeY9T), Celerio and the Eeco van. First two are expected to be launched by 2015, whereas Eeco diesel by 2016.
By doing so, it will attempt to grab market share from current leaders in the segment, Tata and Mahindra. So far, Maruti took inspiration form Suzuki Carry, and launched Versa as a family car back in 2001. But it was not well received and pushed to the sidelines for about a decade, until it was renamed as Eeco and priced ultra less by loosing less important features in Versa. It turned out to become a magical hit then and started selling well in cities as well for moving people and goods. Yet, it couldn’t make a strong way into rural market owing to less practicality of CNG vehicles there and also couldn’t compete with home-grown champions in this sector with their diesel powered products.
Now, Maruti is preparing to change its fate and also others’ by developing its own 800cc diesel engine and using it to power a new LCV (CodeY9T) and a new version of Maruti Eeco. This engine will also feature in upcoming diesel version of Celerio. If all goes well, Maruti could jump to top in furthermore aspects of automotive mobility in India . Also, this could trigger the demise of Maruti Omni minivan.
Maruti Eeco is already priced aggressively at Rs. 2.98 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi), which is easily less than its near contenders Tata Ace Magic and Mahindra Maxximo, whose prices start from about Rs. 3.3 lakhs. With diesel version of CodeY9T LCV and Eeco out, Maruti should be prominently visible in rural radar as well. Current version of Eeco is powered by 1.2 litre petrol and CNG fuelled engines that pushes out 73 bhp max. @6,000 rpm and 101Nm max torque @ 3,000 rpm.
Maruti currently enjoys a share of about 32% in rural markets by total volume with its Alto, WagonR, Omni and Eeco vehicles already popular there. With new diesel variants out, it should reach tremendous new heights in the market.
Source Financial Express