The Mahindras believe trimmings are no short
cut to higher market share. Instead, it must be value for money. The group has answered
the Tatas'' move to introduce a stripped-down version of its Sumo with a value-added
Marshal at no extra cost.
The new Marshal that will reach the market
in about two months will have a new engine, DI3200, instead of the present DI series,
booster brakes, a new generation chassis, a newly-designed instrument panel and
ergonomically-designed seats. The new engine is expected to give better ride and handling
for the vehicle. And there is no proposal to increase the price of the vehicle.
The Marshal will continue to be available
ex-showroom, Mumbai, at Rs 3.85 lakh, inclusive of local sales tax and dealer commission,
but excluding insurance, octroi, transport department tax and handling charges. The
stripped down Sumo is priced at Rs 3.96 lakh.
Telco launched its new
Sumo, sans side step and wheel caps, in the first week of September with a price cut of Rs
25,000 to Rs 30,000.
Both Telco and Mahindra & Mahindra
have suffered from sales declines in this segment. Their responses are, however, very
different. Telco believes a price cut will help increase market share. On the other hand,
Mahindra & Mahindra, whose margins on its vehicles are already thin, is looking at
value addition without a price hike as the solution. It is too early to assess the impact.