Maruti Suzuki India, the nation’s largest car maker said that it has invested Rs 290 crore in upgrading its hatchback WagonR that will be rolled out from a new platform with a new engine by end of this month.
The company has stopped the production of the ‘Duo’ variant of the existing WagonR, which has both petrol and LPG mode. The new WagonR will not be a minor change, but a full model change. So, a lot of investment has gone for it. Maruti Suzuki India has invested about Rs 290 crore for upgrading the model.
Vendors have also put in money for the project, which is additional from the company’s share. Mayank Pareek, Maruti Suzuki India Executive Officer (Marketing and Sales) said that when the company does a minor facelift of any model, it costs about Rs 50 crore. When asked about the LPG variant of the existing WagonR, he said, “As of now, we have stopped the Duo and the new WagonR will only be in gasoline.”
Currently ‘Duo’ contributes about 20-22 per cent of total WagonR sales, which stands at 10,000-12,000 units a month. The new WagonR will have a BS IV compliant K10B engine. It will be produced at the company’s Gurgaon facility.
The new WagonR is based on a completely new platform and has a new transmission also. According to Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) standards, the car will give a mileage of 18.9 kmpl. The car will first be sold in India and then in neighboring markets.
Maruti Suzuki India has sold about 8.5 lakh units of WagonR since its launch in 1999. The interest rate is a big concern as about 70 per cent of total passenger cars sold are financed. The company is waiting for the RBI's policy review this month. The increasing commodity prices especially that of steel, is also a major issue that is bothering all car makers.