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Hyundai eyes pole position in utility vehicle market with compact SUV Venue

The launch of Venue comes at a time when the passenger vehicle market is growing at its slowest pace in five years.

, ET Bureau|
Apr 17, 2019, 08.44 PM IST
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Agencies
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Hyundai will be banking on four new launches in 2019.
MUMBAI: South Korean carmaker Hyundai Motor has set itself a target of gaining pole position in the Indian SUV market next 12-18 months by overtaking Maruti Suzuki and Mahindra & Mahindra, a top official said.

Hyundai Motor, which will launch its new compact SUV Venue in the next couple of months, expects it to generate annual volumes of close to 100,000 units and more than double its UV sales in the country to more than 2,50,000

“We will become a formidable player in the SUV segment and with the Venue we will eye leadership in the SUV segment in the country,” S S Kim, managing director at Hyundai Motor India, told ET. “With Creta and Venue both put together we can do combined volumes of 18,000 to 20,000 units (per month).”

The country’s top carmaker Maruti Suzuki, led by Vitara Brezza, inched ahead of M&M to take the pole position in the SUV market a couple of years ago. At the end of FY-19, Maruti Suzuki sold 2.64 lakh units ahead of Mahindra & Mahindra which sold 2.35 lakh units, Hyundai on its part sold 1.25 lakh units in the same period.

Kim, who is also CEO at Hyundai Motor India, said compact SUV is a fast growing segment in the country where his firm was not present. So whatever volumes that comes out of it will be additional, he said.

Developed with an investment of over Rs 1,000 crore, the Venue will be powered by three different powertrains — a 1-litre turbocharged petrol engine with the dual clutch 7-speed transmission, a 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine and a 1.4-litre diesel engine. The vehicle boasts of over 33 connected vehicle features including 10 India specific ones. Advanced high strength steel (AHSS) and high strength steel (HSS) will make up for 69% of the vehicle to ensure its safety.

The launch of Venue comes at a time when the passenger vehicle market is growing at its slowest pace in five years. However, given its cyclical nature, Kim expects the market to bounce back in the second half of 2019 post elections.

Hyundai Motor India plans to produce 7.44 lakh units in 2019 of which domestic sales is expected to account for 5.8 lakh units—a growth of 5% over 5.5 lakh units the company sold in 2018.

Hyundai will be banking on four new launches in 2019. After Venue, it plans to introduce its first 100% electric vehicle, the Kona EV, followed by the new generation Grand i10 and a facelift of Elantra premium sedan.

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