Overwhelming response for the Renault Kwid, which currently boasts over 1.25 bookings, seems to have prompted Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai Motor India Limited (HMIL) to go back to drawing board for the future products. Reports indicate that the big companies are experiencing heat from the Kwid and the next generation Alto in the pipeline for 2018 will feature crossover design.
Crossover design basically means combining best aspects of two segments of cars in one. Renault Kwid, which is a hatchback, comes with raised ground clearance that gives it a SUV-ish stance. This is a never tried before combination in the segment and the USP has worked out well with the SUV loving Indian customers.
A report of ET Auto says the next generation Alto will feature a tall boy design. "We have to congratulate them (Renault) but we are not happy, so we have to have some counter measure. We are deciding what kind of product is needed in that segment," Kenichi Ayukawa, MD of Maruti Suzuki told ET.
Hyundai also started a new car project, which is internally called AH with crossover body. The new car is expected to hit market by the second half of 2018. The Korean car maker estimates potential sales of 95,000 to 1 lakh units per year for the new product.
In addition to Kwid, Nissan's sub brand Datsun unveiled redi-Go hatchback with aggressive design and features on April 14. The redi-Go is slated market entry in June. With smart pricing and tall boy design redi-Go is expected to shake up the segment further. Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai are working on new projects considering this as well.