With utility vehicles segment continuing to grow in spite of general economic slowdown impacting the overall volumes of the automotive business in the country, Tata Motors Ltd sees its UV market share going up to 15 per cent this fiscal, up from 13 per cent it registered last year.

“The growth has been fuelled by growing volumes from SUV Safari and Sumo, with the latter now notching up average sales of about 3,300 a month, up from about 1,100 it was registering before the launch of Sumo Gold. The Sumo Gold was rolled out in select markets in October 2011 and within 30 days we will take it pan-India,” Mr Ashesh Dhar, Head-Utility Vehicle Product Group, Tata Motors Ltd, said.

“The rollout of new models in the Sumo Gold family and Safari have created excitement among buyers. Given their value proposition and features they offer, we are seeing good volumes coming this year. Last year, we registered total sales of 41,000 vehicles in the UV business. This will go up this fiscal with growing numbers from Sumo,” he said.

Launching Sumo Gold in Andhra Pradesh, Mr Dhar said the Sumo has made big strides since its introduction in India about 18 years ago. The new Sumo Gold, with refreshed looks, more powerful CR4 engine and attractive price band, has been received well in the market, both rural and urban areas. Sumo has 15 per cent share in the segment it operates.

The BS III and BS IV variants of Sumo are priced in the range of Rs 5.38 lakh to Rs 6.99 lakh ex-showroom and come with a warranty of three years or 1,00,000 km, whichever is earlier.

Asked about the a proposal to levy higher taxes on diesel cars, Mr Dhar said any move of this nature would impact all manufacturers not just Tata Motors.

(This article was published on February 15, 2012)
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