As a pilot phase, Maruti Suzuki Subscribe will be offered only in Gurugram and Bengaluru at the moment
Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL), India’s largest car manufacturer, has introduced a new vehicle leasing or subscription scheme dubbed ‘Maruti Suzuki Subscribe’. This makes the brand one of the very few automakers operating in the country to offer leasing options for their products. Compared to the usual format of purchasing a new product, leasing schemes promise better flexibilities at a considerably lower expenditure.
As part of its pilot phase, Maruti Suzuki has shared that the new ‘vehicle lease subscription service’ will be limited to Gurugram and Bengaluru for now. Products available under the subscription scheme include the Swift, Dzire, Vitara Brezza and Ertiga in the Maruti Suzuki ARENA portfolio. NEXA choices include the Baleno, Ciaz and XL6. In other words, Maruti Suzuki Subscribe is applicable for most products carrying a starting price above Rs 5 lakh ex-showroom.
The company expects to improve sales amid the COVID-19 crisis through the initiative. From a buyer’s perspective, owning a Maruti Suzuki has become much easier amid the challenging times especially since India’s automotive industry is on its way to making a gradual recovery from the pandemic.
Maruti Suzuki India Limited has been working on this leasing programme for almost a year. The initiative comes in partnership with ORIX Auto Infrastructure Services Limited, a subsidiary of Japan-based ORIX Corporation. This is not the first time that Maruti Suzuki is introducing lease opportunities. The company had earlier launched an exclusive leasing service for corporates but that could not see much success.
With Maruti Suzuki Subscribe, the automaker joins the likes of Hyundai Motor India and Mahindra & Mahindra in the field of leasing business. German OEMs Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and BMW also offer their own version of leasing options. In the two-wheeler segment, Bangalore-based Ather Energy is a good example of a brand offering lease or subscription options.
As mentioned before, leasing options offer several advantages over the traditional way of owning a car. For starters, the total amount payable is substantially lower. Prices are generally dependent on the lease period and added benefits (such as service or maintenance packages, accessories, etc.).
However, one could argue that the customer never ‘owns’ the vehicle in a leasing scheme. The option to completely own the leased vehicle is usually available at an extra cost towards the end of the service. Furthermore, leasing programmes offer limited choices of vehicle variants in some cases.