Despite an awful slowdown, the mass market SUV segment in the country (luxury SUVs not included) posted a positive YoY growth (1.22%) in September 2019. It is not an exaggeration to state that five new SUVs which were launched earlier this year are shouldering the entire weight of the now 30-product strong segment.
Of the SUVs which were already on sale in September 2018, only Honda HR-V and Skoda Rapid posted positive YoY growth last month but given their very low base (165 and 150 units respectively), their positive impact on the overall segment’s performance is negligible. The vehicles that rescued the segment are Hyundai Venue, Kia Seltos, MG Hector, Mahindra XUV300 and Tata Harrier.
The combined contribution of the aforementioned new comers to the segment’s total volume last month stood at 21,736 units, or in other words, around 35% of total volume. So, had it not been for these new crossovers, things would have been very bad.
After briefly losing its crown to the Venue, the Maruti Vitara Brezza returned to its top spot in September 2019 but it could only manage 10,362 units at YoY decline of 28.17%. The Venue finished at 7,942 units while the Kia Seltos took the third spot with 7,754 units dispatched.
Popular models like Hyundai Creta, Mahindra Bolero, Scoprio, Ford EcoSport and Tata Nexon registered poorer sales performances last month compared to the same month last year. Constrained only by the production capacity, the MG Hector finished ninth at 2,608 units. The premium crossover is sitting on impressive number of bookings and the automaker will be rolling out 3,000 units per month starting from October. The Mahindra XUV300 found itself in tenth spot with a haul of 2,492 units.
The series of minor updates at regular intervals seem to have made a bit of difference to the Tata Harrier’s customer response as the flagship SUV clocked 941 units which is much better than what it managed in August 2019.
Others in the list include Honda WRV, Mahindra XUV500, Maruti S-Cross, Mahindra TUV300, Toyota Fortuner, Jeep Compass, Ford Endeavour,
Renault Duster, Mahindra Thar, Nissan Kicks, VW Tiguan, Tata Safari, Hyundai Tucson, Mahindra Alturas, Renault Captur, and last – Nissan Terrano.
Experts believe that the auto industry has already hit its rock bottom and things will only get better from now on. We expect some stability once the country fully shifts to BS-VI emission norms on April 1 next year.