With India proving to be a growing market for SUVs (sports utility vehicles), it is catching the fancy of major auto players. Isuzu Motors India seems to be the latest in line to jump on the SUV bandwagon in the country. It has expressed its intent to build a small SUV for the domestic market.
Top-class brands such as Toyota Rush and Honda BR-V have already made headway in India, where car users are keen to embrace the SUV. The reasons, as VG Ramakrishnan, Founding Partner and MD, Avanteum Advisors LLP, explains are the increasing income levels and the absence of a value proposition in the switch from Sedan to the executive segment. “Currently, Sedans available in the market are replete with features and the rationale of upgradation is not justified as there are no delta features or power factor. SUVs are getting popular due to space and height and India is only mimicking the global trend,” he says.
Increasingly, buyers, looking at a 5-7 year timeline, are veering towards SUVs. In this regard, Isuzu has the advantage as its other models such as the D-Max are extremely popular. “The Japanese auto company is cautious with respect to growth. India is still evolving as far as the SUV market is concerned. But the comfort and convenience aspects and the need to accommodate more people for travel, especially for leisure, makes SUV an ideal choice,” Ramakrishnan adds.
Isuzu inaugurated a new showroom in the city. It also launched the new ISUZU mu-X, 7-seater, full-size, premium SUV here, marking the start of sale from the new outlet. The vehicle is priced at Rs 26.23 lakh. Masanori Katayama, President, Isuzu Motors, says, “India is one of the key growth markets for Isuzu and we have made significant progress since we began our operations in 2012. Our products have been very well accepted by the Indian market. Our company is creating a new lifestyle in India with globally-proven vehicles. India-made range of D-MAX and mu-X SUV vehicles will strengthen and add fillip to our export operations and will play an important role, contributing to our future growth.”
Venkatesh, MD, Kun Isuzu, says, “We have been associated with Isuzu for over 5 years and I am pleased to expand our footprint, representing the brand in the city.” The Kun Group is a key automobile dealer in the country.