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Market None Too Sanguine

CAR SALES IN INDIA HAVE BEEN SHOWING A DOWNWARD TREND month after month. Even Maruti have cut production due to lack of demand; something that was unheard of. Incidentally, Maruti had not reduced production even during the 2008 meltdown.

Last month Hyundai unveiled an all-new sub-four-metre SUV, the Venue. The Venue will take on the Ford EcoSport, Maruti Brezza, and the recently launched Mahindra XUV300. This SUV has a fresh design and the build quality looks very good. The fit-and-finish is good both on the exterior and the interior. The leg-room at the rear is good with a generous space in the front as well. The boot is large enough to accommodate two full-size bags comfortably. The production capacity has been increased by 50,000 cars at the Hyundai plant in Chennai to facilitate the extra capacity required for the production of the Venue.

June will witness the entry of a new car manufacturer in India. KIA will launch their first car here on the 21st of that month. The next in line to make their advent in the Indian car market will be MG with the launch of their SUV, Hector.

The topic of discussion nowadays is whether one should go for EVs or for hybrids. Given the present infrastructure, it is a no-brainer that the plug-in hybrid is the way to go, for you can drive in the EV mode for your daily commuting and as a regular car for long-distance drives out of town. The other problem is that 80 per cent of our electricity is generated by coal-fired powerplants. How can this energy be “green” if we are just shifting the source of pollution from one place to another?



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