Mahindra launches SUV, TUV 300

Auto major Mahindra & Mahindra is expecting a good response to its recently launched compact SUV TUV300 with growing demand in the utility vehicle segment.

Last week M&M launched its new compact SUV, the sub-4 metre TUV300, at a starting price of Rs6.90 lakh, adding to competition in an already crowded compact SUV space (See: Mahindra launches TUV300 to regain SUV market share).

"In 2011-12, the utility vehicles contribution to the passenger vehicle segment was 15 per cent, which rose to 23 per cent in 2014-15.

Even though the passenger car segment has remained stable or has even gone down, the trend towards utility vehicles has been gaining ground,"  VP automotive sales Jyoti Malhotra told reporters in Chandigarh yesterday.

Malhotra, who spoke on the sidelines of launch of the TUV300 in Chandigarh, said that as present society was very aspiration-driven and there was a growing "aspirational class" of customers who were looking for more features and better quality, yet at the same time the "affordability quotient" remained their key concern.

Malhotra added, in the overall market, the growth in the industry was "being driven by new launches".

"Available at Mahindra dealerships across India, the TUV300 price starts at Rs7.12 lakh, ex-showroom Chandigarh for the T4 variant (with top-end variant priced at just over Rs9 lakh). The vehicle's inspired by the design of a battle tank, its bold and stylish look, its imposing bumpers, together with lots of features and comfort on the inside, that will make anyone want to own it," Malhotra said.

Meanwhile, M&M plans to launch at least five more models during the current fiscal as part of its earlier announcement to roll out nine new models, which included a compact sports utility vehicle, S101, before the current financial year.

Ashish Malik, vice-president (personal brands & market research), said the company expected the festival season to play a big role, helping garner volumes during the launch of TUV 300 in Hyderabad yesterday. He added the ''True Blue SUV'' produced at the company's Chakan manufacturing unit had already begun to create a buzz in the market.

''We have the capacity to roll out about 5,000 units of the new SUV and this is expected to add to the overall sales volumes. Though there is no immediate target for volumes, we are looking at 4,500 to 5,000 units per month,'' he said.