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Maruti launches Swift at Rs 3.87 lakh

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Maruti's premium compact car Swift that was launched in the Capital on Wednesday. Ramesh Sharma
Maruti's premium compact car Swift that was launched in the Capital on Wednesday. Ramesh Sharma

Our Bureau

New Delhi, May 25

MARUTI Udyog Ltd on Wednesday announced the launch of its premium compact car Suzuki Swift at a starting price point of Rs 3.87 lakh.

This is the company's first launch in about four-and-a-half years.

The car has been priced cheaper than its competitor Hyundai Getz, which comes at approximately Rs 4.5 lakh.

The Swift, which has a 1.3 litre engine, will be available in three variants with the most expensive and fully loaded variant priced at Rs 4.85 lakh, Mr Jagdish Khattar, Managing Director, said today.

While the base model is equipped with power steering and manual air conditioning, the most expensive model will have powered windows, automatic air-conditioning and air bags.

Mr Khattar added that the pricing of the vehicle was an "introductory offer" which would be on "for a reasonable period of time" without providing details of the duration. However, dealer sources said that the offer is likely to be on for a minimum of three months and a decision on whether to extend it or not would be taken keeping in view the consumer response to the vehicle.

The response till now, the company said, had been very good with 9,000 bookings for the Swift even before the announcement of the pricing. Mr Khattar declined to give any targets for the car stating that the company's intention was to grow the segment between the compact car and a sedan.

He also said the company would not face any production constraints as Maruti would be able to stretch production at its Gurgaon unit to beyond 6,00,000 units if required.

According to company officials, Maruti initially plans to make 200 units of the Swift per day on a double shift basis. This would translate to about 5,000 cars a month.

Incidentally, Suzuki Motor Corporation had said last year that it planned to make 2,50,000 units of the Swift per annum in four countries (including India) beginning this year.

Analysts point out that Maruti is betting on the model to emerge as a volume spinner for the company.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated May 26, 2005)
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