New Delhi: Maruti Suzuki Ltd. on Wednesday launched its new car model, Swift DZire, with introductory price ranging between Rs 4.49 lakh and Rs 6.70 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), aiming to consolidate its position in the bigger car segment.
DZire, the seventh model Maruti Suzuki has launched in the last three years, comes in both diesel and petrol variants and is powered by 1.3 litre engine.
The petrol variants are priced between Rs 4.49 lakh and Rs 5.90 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), while the diesel ones are priced between Rs 5.39 lakh and Rs 6.70 lakh.
Maruti Suzuki India Managing Director and CEO Shinzo Nakanishi said the new entry-level sedan would play a strategic role in strengthening the company's position in the entry level sedan segment.
"It has a special place in our product strategy. Millions of Indians own compact cars. With growing incomes and better lifestyle, many of them want to upgrade to a sedan. But today, they are not able to find an entry-level sedan that offers style, features and performance. The DZire offers all this, and at an attractive price," he said.
With the Swift Dzire, competition in the lower A3 segment is expected to hot up in the segment, which currently is dominated by Mahindra Renault's Logan and Tata Motors' Indigo.
Tata Motors offers its lowest sedan model Indigo CS between Rs 3.66 lakh and Rs 4.34 lakh, and the Indigo XL going up to Rs 7.38 lakh. Logan petrol version starts at Rs 3.89 lakh and goes up to Rs 5.02 lakh, while that of diesel begins with Rs 5.72 lakh and going up to Rs 6.63 lakh.
Nakanishi said the company would be focusing on the Indian market only with the Swift DZire. He, however, declined to comment on the company's expected sales of the new car.
"All I can say is this will help in strengthening our leadership in the Indian car market," he said.
Asked how long the introductory price would last, Nakanishi refused to commit a time frame but said the rising input costs, especially that of steel and petroleum products, were putting pressure on the margins.
He said that MSI was taking measures to counter the pressure and absorb it as long as possible without passing it on to the customers.
The DZire, which offers features, including integrated stereo, steering mounted audio controls, automatic climate control, power windows and dual airbags, has come as replacement of MSI's earlier midsize sedan Esteem.
It is being launched at a time when the company has managed to race past competition in the midsize sedan segment (A3), selling nearly 41,000 units in the April-February period of this fiscal.
While continuing to lead India's small car market, Maruti Suzuki has emerged as the market leader in the A3 segment as well during 2007-08. The company has sold a total of 41,800 units in the last 11 months of the fiscal in the domestic market.