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New Delhi Auto Expo 2014 Review

New Delhi Auto Expo 2014 Review


As we publish this, the New Delhi Auto Expo is coming to an end. The biennial event was special in the sense that it was perhaps the first edition ever to be held in the face of a recession – the Indian passenger vehicle market hasn’t had a significant dip in the last 15 years. However, the year 2013 has been a disaster and 2014 hasn’t started off any better with January sales down 9.34% year-on-year.

In this background, the Auto Expo 2014 gained even more importance. Vehicle manufacturers looked at it as an opportunity to jack-up the excitement in the car market and to get fence sitters to the showrooms again. For many vehicle manufacturers, the show – right at the start of the year – is a good opportunity for them to showcase and take market feedback for models they would be launching. For others, the Expo was an opportunity to do media launches of products that they intend to bring to the market later in the year.

We walked the Expo for two days and here is a brand-by-brand, model-by-model analysis of vehicles displayed by each manufacturer. For every displayed model we decided to analyse its significance for the manufacturer, its likelihood of coming to the market, the likely date of launch and the expected volumes.

 

Ashok Leyland

The second largest truck manufacturer in India has been on a new product spree lately with the Captain Heavy truck range, the Boss Medium Commercial Vehicles range and the Partner LCV range (developed with Nissan), all launched within the last six months. The manufacturer displayed all at the Expo, and some more in the form of the Dost Tipper and Stile Luxury Edition.

 

Dost Tipper: This is a Tipper body variant on the Dost Small Commercial Vehicle platform. It would be useful in applications like garbage collection and should find good acceptance since there is hardly any direct completion in this GVW range.

Likelihood: Extremely likely

Expected launch date: Within six months

Forecasted volumes: 3000-5000 per year (for only the tipper configuration)

Significance for company: Significant, as this is likely to improve the already healthy sales volumes of the Dost. This, along with passenger carrying version Dost Express, are indicators that the company may be working on some other Dost platform body applications as well, including a van body style.

 

Stile Luxury: A ‘luxury edition’ version of the Stile van with two-bucket seats replacing the second and third row of seats. What this does is to liberate generous legroom and loads of luggage space.

Likelihood: Likely

Expected launch date: Don’t know, don’t care

Forecasted volumes: 200 per year (for only the luxury configuration)

Significance for company: The Stile has sales of 120 units per month (Ashok Leyland contends that the vehicle has had a limited launch and is available in a few states only), while its brother-from-another-mother – the Nissan Evalia – has sales of 180 units. To us, the luxury edition is little more than a desperate scamper to save a drowning platform.

 

Audi

Audi unveiled the A3 sedan, the model that will define the brand for the next few quarters. The brand also had the A3 Cabrio at the stand. Also present was the Audi Sports Quattro Concept, a 700-bhp, laser headlamp flashing concept car. Audi also had the LeMans winning R18 E-tron Quattro in attendance.

 

A3 Sedan: The small Audi sedan is the car that the brand is banking on to propel sales for the next many quarters. When it gets launched, the A3 is likely to be cheapest Audi in the Indian market, attracting even more customers to the already largest selling luxury brand. Best, it will give Audi a small sedan in the market a few quarters before Mercedes and many quarters before BMW.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Within six months

Forecasted volumes: 6000-10000 per year

Significance for company: Significant, as the A3 will bring the price entry point for the Audi brand by a few thousand dollars, enough to potentially double the brand’s sales in India.

 

A3 Cabrio:  Cabrios don’t sell in India due to the harsh weather, congested road conditions and dust. For a manufacturer to display one at the Expo means that there was a likely imbalance between the display area and the number of possible models.

Likelihood: Extremely unlikely

Expected launch date: Check above

Forecasted volumes: 50-100

Significance for company: Umm, none!

 

BMW

BMW had four new cars – 3-Series Gran Tourismo, new X5, M6 Gran Coupe and the i8 hybrid. Surprisingly, all four will come to the Indian market.

 

3-Series Gran Tourismo: The model has already been launched in the market and is the most expensive model in the 3-Series line-up.

Likelihood: Already there

Expected launch date: Check above

Forecasted volumes: 300-500 per year (for only the 3-Series GT)

Significance for company: Not much except to give another option to a handful of customers.

New X5: The last few screws on this would be turned over at the Chennai plant and BMW is hoping that it starts matching the Q7’s numbers in some way.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Within six months

Forecasted volumes: 3000-5000 per year

Significance for company: BMW’s flagship SUV has never dented the Audi Q7’s market and that is something that BMW would like to change with the new generation. We are not keeping our fingers crossed.

 

M6 Gran Coupe: BMW does not plan to assemble the M6 Gran Coupe in India; the car would be imported as a Completely Built Unit (CBU).

Likelihood: Extremely likely

Expected launch date: Within six months

Forecasted volumes: 300-500 per year

Significance for company: Such models appeal to a handful of discerning customers right at the top of the luxury car pyramid. Their importance is in ensuring that BMW matches Audi and Mercedes in terms of offerings. That the profit margins on such models are huge also helps.

 

i8 Hybrid: The i8 hybrid would likely be introduced in India though BMW has no plans to assemble it.

Likelihood: Likely

Expected launch date: Within a year

Forecasted volumes: 50-100 per year

Significance for company: A model like the i8 is an image driver for the company and that is the only reason we could think of to justify BMW’s decision to launch the model in the country. Hybrids don’t sell in India and expensive hybrids would be even more difficult.

 

Chevrolet

While there was also the Corvette and Camaro displayed at the Chevrolet stand, both of them would not be launched in India anytime soon. The real deal was the facelifted Beat hatchback, which was launched at the Expo. The even bigger deal was the Adra small SUV concept, which GM says has been designed in India.

 

Adra: A concept as of now, it signals Chevrolet’s intentions of entering the hot mini-SUV segment.

Likelihood: Very Likely

Expected launch date: Q3 2015 – Q1 2016

Forecasted volumes: 30000-40000 per year

Significance for company: Chevrolet has been struggling in the Indian market and this is one model that they need to get right. However, we are worried that the field would be very crowded by the time the Adra is launched and GM’s mini-SUV may be rattled by Maruti-Suzuki’s XA-Alpha concept based mini-SUV.

 

Datsun

Datsun had the Go hatchback at the Expo. The company confirmed that the first cars had started rolling out of the plant near Chennai. The company also had the Go+ MPV at the stand and also the Redi-Go, a concept car that hints at Datsun’s future styling direction.

 

Go: Datsun has already started rolling out the Go hatchback from its Oragadam plant and that means a commercial launch should not be far away.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Within three months

Forecasted volumes: 30000-40000 per year

Significance for company: The Go is expected to be a direct competitor to multiple models in the Maruti-Suzuki small car range. The car will establish the Datsun brand in India and its success or failure will decide the future course of action for the brand in the Indian market.

 

Go+: The Go+ MPV was first unveiled at the Indonesia motor show in 2013. The car is the final production version and should follow the Go into the Indian market.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Q3 2014 – Q1 2015

Forecasted volumes: 30000-36000 per year

Significance for company: The Go+ is interesting, as Datsun has managed to cram in three rows of seating in an MPV shape, all within 4.0-meter in length. What this means is that the Go+ will attract a lower excise duty and should be priced very aggressively. Volumes can go up significantly if Datsun can work out its dealership network.

 

Redi-Go: The Redi-Go is a concept and is unlikely to make it to the showrooms in the current shape. At the same time the concept indicates Datsun’s future design direction and also that the brand would be working on a mini-SUV on the Go platform.

Likelihood: Very Unlikely

Expected launch date: Check above

Forecasted volumes: 36000-42000 (for the eventual product)

Significance for company: A small SUV based on the Redi-Go styling and with the Go as the base would have a huge market in India. However, this is unlikely to make it to production before end 2015.

 

Fiat

Fiat had three ‘new’ vehicles at the display – the Avventura concept, the freshened Linea sedan and the 500 Abarth.

 

Avventura: This is the Punto hatchback with an off-road kid bolted on. It is also Fiat’s desperate attempt to drive sales.

Likelihood: Absolutely Sure

Expected launch date: Within 2014

Forecasted volumes: 2400-3600 (for only the Avventura)

Significance for company: Otherwise delicate hatchbacks with plastic claddings to make them appear rugged are the semi-flavor of the season. Volkswagen has already attempted the same with the CrossPolo and the VW marketing team seems to be pleased with the sales outcome. Fiat wants to walk down the same track with the Avventura. It is significant as the margins on this would be healthy and even an incremental 200 units a month would be a shot in the arm for the company.

 

Linea facelift: Fiat plans to run two generations of the Linea in parallel, starting 2014. As a fist step, the existing Linea has received a facelift for 2014.

Likelihood: Absolutely Sure

Expected launch date: Q1 2014

Forecasted volumes: 9000-15000

Significance for company: The Linea facelift will compete with the lower C segment cars in terms of pricing while the new Linea will have a go in the upper C segment. With both, Fiat is aiming to increase its volumes in the country a bit, rebuild from the mess that the company found itself at the end of 2012 and take another shot at the volume segment in five years time.

 

500 Abarth: The Fiat 500 competes with the VW Beetle in the Indian very-rich-man’s-teenage-daughter’s-joyride market. Together, both sell about 50 units in a year. With the Abarth, Fiat wants to sell a few more.

Likelihood: Absolutely Sure

Expected launch date: Q1 2014

Forecasted volumes: 100-150

Significance for company: The 500 Abarth may sell only a few units but serves Fiat’s purpose of having a halo model in their showrooms. More important is the Abarth’s rub-off on new models like the Avventura.

 

Ford

Ford had its entire range on display including the freshened up Fiesta. However, the most important model on display was the Figo concept, essentially a sub-four-meter sedan on the next generation B2E architecture, also underpinning the Fiesta and EcoSport.

 

Figo Concept: The Figo Concept is a sub-four-meter sedan based on the next generation B2E architecture (Ford lovingly calls its platforms, architecture). We expect the end product to appear in the first half of 2015.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Q1 2015 – Q3 2015

Forecasted volumes: 120000-150000 (For the sedan, including exports)

Significance for company: The Figo Concept (or whatever it is called at launch) is Ford’s entry into another volume segment. The confidence gained from the Figo and EcoSPort is going to rub off on the Figo Concept and we expect healthy production volumes, including significant exports as well. Not to miss, there would be a hatchback riding the same platform as well, also coming in 2015.

 

Honda

Honda has just commercially launched the City in the Indian market and the first month of sales has been great. However, the Honda display at the Expo was much more beyond the City and showcased many of the brand’s upcoming launches. Honda had the Mobilio MPV, the Jazz hatchback, XS-1 concept SUV, Accord hybrid sedan and the NSX sports car at the display.

 

Jazz: The earlier generation Jazz never worked in India, mostly due to the pricing. Honda plans to change that with the new Jazz, which will have high local content to drive down prices and a diesel engine as well.

Likelihood: Extremely likely

Expected launch date: Within Q1 2015

Forecasted volumes: 42000-48000

Significance for company: Honda does not have presence in the premium B segment of the car market. The new Jazz will give Honda a hatchback above the Brio and fill a market void for the company. The much-acclaimed 1.5-liter diesel will make it a compelling preposition.

 

Mobilio: The Mobilio is an MPV based on the Brio platform and is expected to be introduced in the Indian market in the near future.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Q3 2014 – Q2 2015

Forecasted volumes: 36000-42000

Significance for company: The Mobilio would be offered with the 1.5-liter diesel engine and would go against with the Maruti-Suzuki Ertiga MPV in the market. This increases Honda’s volumes on the Brio platform and would improve cost optimization all around.

 

XS-1: Honda displayed a compact SUV concept, XS-1 at the Auto Expo/. While a concept as of now, Honda is working on a compact SUV product for the Indian market.

Likelihood: Extremely likely

Expected launch date: Q1 2016

Forecasted volumes: 30000-36000

Significance for company: A compact SUV is strategic for Honda as it enables the brand to enter a segment where it is not present as of now. The SUV can be offered with the existing 1.5-liter petrol / 1.5-liter diesel engines, improving economies of scale.

 

Accord Hybrid: Honda also had the Accord Hybrid on display at the Expo. However, we see very little probability of the exact vehicle being launched in India as hybrids often struggle in the Indian market. Honda had earlier experimented with the Civic hybrid in the Indian market with disastrous results and we would be very surprised if they try their luck again with the Accord Hybrid. At the same time, the Hybrid does give a very good idea of the shape of the next generation Accord that should come to the Indian market.

 

NSX: Honda also had the NSX sports car on display. The brand has no plans to bring the car to the Indian market.

 

Hyundai

Hyundai made the best of the show and launched two models. The Xcent is a rather bland looking three-box version of the i10 Grand (i10 in global markets) and is of sub-four meter length. The Santa Fe is Hyundai’s flagship SUV and sells a handful in the Indian market. The company also had the HND-9 Venace concept at the show, mostly to tell showgoers that Hyundai designers can design desirable cars and that the Xcent styling may be an aberration.

Xcent: The Xcent has been unveiled at the Expo and commercial launch may follow in the next few weeks. The car is Hyundai’s foray in the sub-four meter sedan segment, mostly dominated by the Maruti-Suzuki Swift DZire and Honda Amaze till now.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Within Q1 2014

Forecasted volumes: 60000-90000

Significance for company: The sub-four meter sedan segment is hot and was one of the very few segments to deliver growth in 2013. The Swift DZire is the market leader in the segment and Honda a strong contender with the Amaze sedan. The Xcent will go against tough competition but Hyundai’s network and hold on the Indian market should see healthy volumes for the car.

 

Santa Fe: Hyundai did a commercial launch of the Santa Fe at the Auto Expo. This is the company’s flagship SUV in India and does little in terms of volumes.

Likelihood: Already there

Expected launch date: Check above

Forecasted volumes: 3000-3600

Significance for company: Profitability on kits and CBUs is always high and a little rub-off on other cars in the showroom cannot be ruled out.

 

Isuzu

Isuzu is a new entrant in the Indian SUV / pickup truck and a very marginal player. The company displayed the D-Max Space Cab pickup at the Auto Expo.

 

D-Max Space Cab: The D-Max Space Cab is a pick-up truck with a king cab option. Isuzu is assembling the same at Hindustan Motor’s idle plant at Chennai and this should enable the company to price this competitively.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Q2 2014

Forecasted volumes: 3000-5000

Significance for company: Isuzu is just setting themselves up in the Indian market. The D-Max would have very little competition in the king cab pick-up truck market in the country. However, the entire pick-up truck market in India is very small, and that is a worry. Overall, Isuzu needs the D-Max to add vehicles to its showrooms and eventually prepare or a full-fledged assault on the lucrative SUV market in the country.

 

Jaguar

Jaguar made a significant announcement at the Expo in the form of adding the XJ to kit production in India. This will bring down the prices for the brand’s flagship several notches and add serious volumes. Jaguar also had the C-X17 SUV concept occupying center stage at the display. The Auto Expo also saw the formal launch of the F-Type in the Indian market.

 

C-X17: The C-X17 may be a concept as of now but an SUV with near similar design language should be rolling out by end 2015. Depending on the pricing of the actual vehicle, this may be potentially Jaguar’s largest selling model in India, in the future.

Likelihood: Extremely likely

Expected launch date: Within Q4 2015 – Q3 2016

Forecasted volumes: 2400-6000

Significance for company: Indians love luxury SUVs – Audi’s Q7 is popular in the market and Mercedes has been getting a good response to the latest M-Class. BMW to has a new X5 rolling out in the near future. Even Land Rover does relatively well in the Indian market with its SUV range. In this context, the C-X17 will finally provide Jaguar with a SUV option in its line-up and may attract potentially serious numbers.

 

Land Rover

India is an important growing market for Land Rover and the brand displayed the 2014 Range Rover Evoque, an updated Discovery and a long wheelbase Range Rover at the Expo.

 

Range Rover LWB: This is an extended wheelbase version of the Range Rover SUV and is targeted at Indian customers who like to be chauffer driven, even in a Range Rover.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Q2 2014

Forecasted volumes: 300-600

Significance for company: The Range Rover is a success in its own limited way for the Land Rover brand in India. With an extended wheelbase version, Land Rover is aiming to offer even more space to rear seat occupants, something that backseat driving Indians would love.

Land Rover also launched the Range Rover Evoque 2014 version, which now comes with a nine-speed automatic transmission. The company hinted that they will move the RR Evoque assembly to India by the end of 2014.

 

Mahindra

Mahindra had little to show in terms of new products or concepts. So the company sort of dedicated the Expo to alternate propulsion technologies and a number of existing models were reincarnated in hybrid and electric variants. Amongst these concepts were the Verito Electric variant, the XUV Hybrid and the Halo electric sports car concept. Also present were cosmetic exercises like the Bolero Stinger. Mahindra also had the Quanto autoSHIFT at the show. The Quanto autoSHIFT uses an AMT transmission developed with Ricardo and will make its appearance on the vehicle and nearly all future Mahindra vehicles in the near future.

Halo: The Halo is a small, two-seater electric concept car that may make it to production in about three years.

Likelihood: Unlikely

Expected launch date: Q2 2017 – Q4 2017

Forecasted volumes: 5000-6000 (mostly exports)

Significance for company: The Halo is a concept car that Mahindra says will make it to production. However, the domestic market for the same would be very limited and, if at all the Halo makes it to the production line, it would be for exports only.

 

Maruti-Suzuki

The largest player in the Indian car market, Maruti-Suzuki, used the Auto Expo to commercially launch the Celerio hatchback. The company also displayed two near production ready concepts – the S-Cross crossover and the Ciaz sedan.

 

Celerio: The Celerio is the latest small hatchback from Maruti-Suzuki and it was commercially launched at the Expo.

Likelihood: Already here

Expected launch date: Launched at Auto Expo

Forecasted volumes: 90000-120000

Significance for company: The Celerio replaces two of Maruti-Suzuki’s poorly selling models – Estilo and A-Star – in the market. The company would like to replace the two’s combined volumes as well as gain an additional 20-30% more with the new model. Significantly, with the Celerio, Maruti-Suzuki is trying to introduce Indian customers to Automated Manual Transmissions (AMT). Two variants of the Celerio are equipped with an AMT and Maruti-Suzuki has managed to price the car aggressively as compared to regular automatic variants.

 

Ciaz: The Ciaz is a concept as of now but it is a strong indicator towards the upcoming SX-4 replacement sedan variant. The Ciaz was earlier unveiled as the Authentics concept at the 2013 Shanghai show.

Likelihood: Very Likely

Expected launch date: Q3 2015 – Q2 2016

Forecasted volumes: 24000 – 30000

Significance for company: As a concept, the Ciaz looks slightly bigger than the SX-4 and is likely to be positioned as an upper C-segment (Honda Civic, VW Jetta) offering. Maruti-Suzuki has never been successful in the premium segment and the Ciaz would be yet another attempt at the segment. However, the company is likely to disrupt things by taking a high localization strategy to drive prices down in the segment.

 

S-Cross: The S-Cross is a mid-size crossover and would share platforms with the Ciaz. Again, the Maruti-Suzuki template for success is to localize it beyond imagination so as to price it where the competition cannot hope to reach.

Likelihood: Very Likely

Expected launch date: Q2 2015 – Q4 2015

Forecasted volumes: 36000 – 48000

Significance for company: As a concept, the S-Cross works well for the Indian market. It would be the flagship for the Maruti-Suzuki brand and, if priced at below a million rupees, may bring serious numbers as well. For the brand, it would be a stepping-stone towards the premium end of the market, something they have failed repeatedly in the past.

 

Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes had a fairly active Auto Expo with the unveiling of its GLA Class crossover. The brand also had the CLA 45 AMG on display and that was quite a shock.

 

GLA Class: The GLA Class is a compact SUV on the lines of the Audi Q3 and the BMW X1. The GLA is underpinned by the MFA platform that also supports the A-Class and B-Class vehicles.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Within 2014

Forecasted volumes: 4000 – 6000

Significance for company: Due to some bad product planning, Mercedes allowed BMW, and then Audi to run riot in India with the X1 and Q3 respectively. The result was the period 2011-12 when the brand became a distant third to the other two German luxury brands. However, there has been a change in attitude since 2013 and Mercedes is displaying a new found aggression. The GLA is the next step in that – a vehicle that will finally give Mercedes something to offer in the keenly contested compact luxury SUV segment.

 

CLA 45 AMG: The CLA is the Mercedes equivalent of the Audi A3 and we expected the typical 2.0-liter diesels to power the compact sedan. So when Mercedes unveils a fire breathing AMG version, it signals a change in the entry-level entry strategy.

Likelihood: Very Likely

Expected launch date: Within 2014

Forecasted volumes: 360 – 480

Significance for company: The performance oriented CLA 45 AMG will establish the CLA nameplate before Mercedes unloads the smaller engine cousins. By launching a very expensive compact sedan in the market first, Mercedes wants to build upon the premium quotient of the car, before they come with the real-deal budget versions.

 

Nissan

Nissan disappointed at the Auto Expo with having just a facelifted Sunny sedan at the show. There was nothing else worth mentioning at the display.

 

Renault

Like Nissan, Renault too disappointed in terms of giving any indications of future ready concepts. However, the brand had the KWID concept on display. The concept is Renault’s interpretation of what future mobility for a country like India should look like. KWID is essentially a five seater compact SUV with three seats up front and two in the back. However, the KWID is just a concept design and will stay that way though some design elements may flow into future Renaults.

 

Skoda

Skoda had the facelifts of the poorly selling Yeti SUV and the Superb flagship sedan at the Expo. The Superb has already been commercially launched while the Yeti would be introduced in the second half of 2014.

 

Tata

Tata came to the show with 18 new products / concepts, including heavy trucks, LCVs, Vans, people movers and passenger cars. However, many of these like the Safari Storme Ladakh and the Sumo Extreme were merely cosmetic exercises on existing products.

The serious stuff at the Tata display was the Bolt hatchback and the Zest sedan. Apart from these, there were two concepts in the Nexon compact SUV and the ConnectNext small car.

 

Bolt: The Bolt is a facelifted Indica Vista and Tata’s attempt at getting away from the Indica Vista brand name. It is the company’s way of reinventing itself and making the brand relevant again in the Indian car market.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Sometime in 2014

Forecasted volumes: 36000 – 48000

Significance for company: Tata is facing a massive problem in the Indian car market – the brand has lost so much of its sheen that it is largely becoming irrelevant. The Indica and (as an extension) Indica Vista are no longer on many customers’ consideration list when it comes to buying a B-Segment hatchback. With the Bolt, Tata is planning to start afresh and that is why they seem to be taking the bold decision of moving away from the Indica brand name.

 

Zest: Based on the same platform as the Bolt, the Zest is a compact sedan featuring an AMT gearbox. Tata has been working on readying a shortened, sub-four-meter version of the Manza for a few years now and the Zest is the result.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Sometime in 2014

Forecasted volumes: 48000 – 60000

Significance for company: Tata sells a lot of Indigo eCS compact sedans to the fleet market. The company not using the established Indigo brand name on the Zest means that they would also like to target the individual buyer segment and not the taxi market. However, with most Tata vehicles, we do think that the Zest will eventually land up in the fleet market. That is the prime reason why the forecast for the Zest is more than that for the Bolt.

 

Nexon: The Nexon is a SUV concept with no hopes of entering production before 2028. Let us leave it at that.

 

ConnectCar: 2045. Period.

 

Toyota

 

Etios Cross: Toyota got the Etios Cross at the Expo. This is the Toyota Etios Liva hatchback with plastic cladding, larger wheels and higher ground clearance to give it the appearance of a crossover.

Likelihood: Absolutely sure

Expected launch date: Mid 2014

Forecasted volumes: 6000 – 9000

Significance for company: The Liva is a slow seller and Toyota needs to improve sales on the Etios platform. Enter the pseudo-crossover body style, enough plastic to inundate a landfill and slightly smarter looks and you have the Etios Cross. The Etios Cross goes against the CrossPolo and the Avventura in a market that is limited in size.

 

Volkswagen

Volkswagen was expected to display two products / concepts at the Expo but came with only one. The one that didn’t come was the anticipated sub-four-meter Vento variant. Now the Vento-compact’s absence can be either due to the car not ready and VW still fiddling with the design OR the car being completely ready and Volkswagen saving it for a proper unveiling sometime later in the year. Any way, the Vento compact didn’t make it to the Expo.

The model that made it to the Expo was the Taigun concept.

 

Taigun: The Taigun is a small SUV and will go against the hugely popular Ford EcoSport and many other models (which would be in the market by then) from Maruti, Hyundai and some more.

Likelihood: Extremely Likely

Expected launch date: Q2 2016 – Q4 2016

Forecasted volumes: 36000 – 48000

Significance for company: Volkswagen needs more products to rebuild the momentum that it has lost in recent months and the Taigun is a step in the right direction. However, the concept will likely undergo many changes before it gets into the Indian market. First, we expect the SUV to be stretched (it is currently 3.86m and can be stretched right up to 4.0-meters) even more. Then we feel that some expensive bits like the split tailgate would be lost in translation. What would also change would be the rear butterfly windows, which would be likely replaced by conventional ones.

New Delhi Auto Expo 2014 Review

New Delhi Auto Expo 2014 Review

Original article from our partners @ India Auto Report.

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