Ford’s aggressive pricing sets a new benchmark in the industry

Ford India has stirred up the tepid car market in the country by aggressively pricing its compact sports utility vehicle EcoSport.

Customers can now buy the EcoSport at a starting price of Rs 5.59 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), with the top end model available for about Rs 9 lakh.

It will be available in 10 variants with 1-litre EcoBoost petrol, 1.5-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel options.

Joginder Singh, President and Managing Director, Ford India, told reporters that the myth that Ford’s vehicles have a heavy ownership cost will also change with this new vehicle because of more local components and modular designs.

For example, the bumper has been so designed that any damage will not require the whole bumper to be changed but only the impacted part.

“The EcoSport is a non-compromise vehicle. It sets new standards in India’s SUV industry classification through its design, development and sensible value proposition,” Singh said.

The pricing will give a stiff competition to other utility vehicles such as Renault’s Duster and Maruti’s Ertiga (Rs 5.99-8.71 lakh) and Mahindra’s Quanto (Rs 5.98-7.49 lakh).Singh said the company expected the new vehicle to be a game-changer for Ford in India and set a benchmark in the auto industry.

It will be exported to some countries in Europe, and to West Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Taiwan.

This is the second generation of the model that was launched in South America in 2003 and already selling in Brazil.

“The EcoSport’s substantial package underscores both desirability and versatility and brings a new sense of value and ingenuity to the Ford brand,” said Vinay Piparsania, Executive Director, Marketing, Sales and Service, Ford India.

“A new benchmark has been set in the SUV segment and we expect more such launches in this price range in the next 6-12 months,” Puneet Gupta, Principal Analyst at India Automotive, IHS, said.

ronendrasingh.s@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on June 26, 2013)
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