India’s largest car-maker, Maruti Suzuki, plans to ride on the back of new launches to retain its numero uno position in the market place and beat back competition from its peers. “We will continue to retain our 50 per cent market share going forward. Though there is stiff competition, we intend to face it through the launch of more models in the future,” Maruti Suzuki India’s Chairman, R C Bhargava said.
Bhargava’s comments assume significance as the car maker’s market share slipped below the 50 per cent mark during the January-June 2010 period. Presently, the company faces competition from car makers such as GM, Ford, Fiat, Toyota and Honda.
“Yes, we have been facing severe production constraints. If we had not faced production constraints, we would have been achieved a higher market share today. But, we are always trying to cater to the people’s demand,” said Bhargava.
The company plans to boost capacity at its plants in Gurgaon and Manesar to 1.2 million units from one million to cater to the market demand by end-this year. “We are expanding our production capacity to meet the market demand,” he said.
Bhargava, who has penned Maruti’s success story in his book, The Maruti Story, said, “It was a long journey for Maruti Suzuki in India, but still we have miles to go. It was a trial and tribulation for many decades to float a brand in India. No doubt, Maruti has shown the way to many car makers to manufacture low-cost small cars in the Indian market.”
“On one hand we are facing production constraints and on the other we are facing a shortage of components. However, we are still managing both and delivering our product to the people,” he added.
Bhargava thanked Sanjay Gandhi, who had apprenticed with Rolls-Royce Motors before returning to India to manufacture a people’s car. “Credit goes to the Gandhi family who helped float the Maruti brand in the Indian market,” Bhargava said.