Companies

Renault Kwid will exceed safety norms: Sawhney

G Balachandar Chennai | Updated on January 20, 2018

Sumit Sawhney with the Renault Kwid

Global NCAP will test the Kwid again, says company’s chief executive





French car maker Renault has said that its annual sales would more than double this calendar year, aided by robust sales of the small car, Kwid, which, he claims, will meet safety norms.

The growth will also be supported by the revival of volumes for MPV (multi purpose vehicle) Lodgy and a robust network expansion.

The company continues to see strong volumes for its entry level Kwid amid growing debate over safety norms in cars in view of the upcoming new regulations in the country.

“Kwid continues to be a popular model among the entry level buyers due to excellent value proposition if offers. It is a global car. While we are meeting all the safety requirements of current regulations in India, we will be far exceeding even the requirements the Indian government will be putting in 2017 and 2019,” Sumit Sawhney, Country CEO and Managing Director, Renault India, told BusinessLine.

His comments also come in the back of crash test results announced recently by the Global NCAP which said Kwid scored low in safety norms in its crash tests.

He said that Global NCAP had tested the Kwid model that was in the developing stage. Global NCAP will test the latest Kwid soon.

“In that list, we were the only manufacturer that was acknowledged for putting more safety norms in the entry level car and that is the positive sign. So, Kwid will exceed all safety norms earlier,” he added.

While all car manufacturers have to comply with the new safety norms that would come into effect in October 2017 (for new cars) and October 2019 (for existing models), Renault is working on making Kwid ready with all the required norms immediately.

Production target

He also asserted that there was no issue in Kwid production and the company had already introduced third shift at the factory near Oragadam to expedite the deliveries. It is targeting monthly production of 10,000 units from this month.

While bookings for Kwid stand at over 120,000 units, it has so far delivered close to 61,000 units. The present waiting period for Kwid is 3-4 months.

Sawhney said its MPV Lodgy also started doing well and sales in May almost doubled when compared with previous months despite de-growth in overall MPV sales in the country.

Lodgy’s growth revival was aided by its fleet variant, which was introduced recently. “Lodgy has over 1,000 bookings now,” he added.

During the first 5-month period of 2016, Renault India has clocked total sales of 50,058 units against 19,006 in the year-ago period.

While Kwid is the major driver of volumes, it expects new Duster and Lodgy to fetch good numbers this fiscal to achieve significant growth.

Renault India plans to ramp up its dealer network from 210 outlets now to 270 by this year-end.

Published on June 05, 2016

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