January 20, 2021

Kia Motors India expects to develop gross sales with quickly to be launched SUV Sonet

New Delhi: Kia Motors, which is ready to enter the mass section in India with an entry-level SUV through the upcoming festive season, expects quantity within the ongoing fiscal 2021 to be higher than final yr on the again of the brand new product, regardless of the slowdown induced by the coronavirus pandemic.

The brand new SUV, Kia Sonet, will tackle the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Venue and the Mahindra XUV300 in a section which posted month-to-month gross sales of 30,000-40,000 models previous to the pandemic.

“We goal to achieve management within the small sports activities utility car section with the Sonet. The brand new launch ought to assist excite the market, carry site visitors to the showrooms,” Manohar Bhat, the top of gross sales and advertising on the Korean firm’s Indian unit, advised ET. “General, the efficiency of the auto business has lots to do with the economic system, nevertheless, we hope to do higher than final yr.”

Kia Motors India offered 84,903 autos within the native market within the final fiscal yr ended March 31. It exported one other 21,461 models from the nation since commencing operations in August 2019.

Aside from gross sales within the home markets, Kia plans to leverage India as one of many main export hubs for the Sonet. The car, which has been particularly developed conserving in thoughts Indian customers, will likely be exported from the corporate’s plant at Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh to markets in Asia, the Center East, Africa and Latin America.

In the meantime, demand for its merchandise within the home market has remained good since resuming operations after the lockdown. At current, SUV Seltos and multipurpose car Carnival have a ready interval of a few month. The regular demand has inspired the corporate to discover beginning a second shift at its facility shortly.

“It (ramping up capability) will depend on market demand in addition to on the availability chain. Even when one vendor is impacted (by the coronavirus outbreak), manufacturing would get affected,” Bhat stated, whereas including: “We are attempting to begin the second shift quickly.”

On future launches, the corporate stated a brand new product can be launched within the nation as scheduled each 6-9 months. Nevertheless, given the severity of the slowdown within the native automotive market, Kia could need to revisit its mid-term goal of promoting 300,000 autos every year by 2022.

Bhat stated: “We must rethink the numbers. The Indian market is unlikely to indicate any development for a while. Reaching an annual gross sales goal of 300,000 models is not going to be as straightforward on this market. It’s a fast-evolving state of affairs and we’ve got to see how the pandemic performs out.”

Passenger car gross sales within the Indian market recorded their steepest decline final quarter, falling 78% to 153,734 models, as manufacturing in addition to gross sales have been severely impacted by the Covid-induced lockdown. Kia Motors India offered 8,936 models within the interval, present knowledge accessible with the Society of Indian Car Producers.