Maruti Suzuki has been dominating the top selling charts since time immemorial now. This time around as well, the Indian giant has occupied the top slots, but with a slight twist. Traditionally, the entry level Alto has been the top seller for the brand and has raked in good numbers. However, this time around, the tables have turned as Maruti Suzuki Dzire and Baleno have taken the lead to become India’s top selling models and the Alto has to be content with the third spot. Talking numbers, one finds that Maruti sent 19,935 units of Dzire, 17,264 units of Baleno and 16,826 units of Alto in March this year.
While changing consumption patterns are also partly responsible, the major reason behind Alto being pushed to the third spot for March 2019 is the new BNVSAP (Bharat New Vehicle Safety Assessment Program) rules that came into force from April 1, 2019. The new rule mandates that all the cars in India must come with driver airbag, ABS, speed alert, seat belt reminder and reverse parking sensor as standard.
Notably, Maruti has yet not equipped the Alto with these features and this is a reason why the sales of Alto for March 2019 took a hit. This also tells us that the Indian giant will soon bring the updated models of Alto 800 and Alto K10 top the market, these new models will follow the BNVSAP rules and will come with the minimum required safety equipment as standard. The new models are expected to hit the market soon and it may be as early as mid-April.
Talking of the aforementioned chaining buying pattern of the customers in India, there has been a remarkable change as far as the past few years have been concerned. Gone are the days when lower cost and affordable entry-level hatchbacks such as the Alto 800 and Alto K10 dominated the Indian market as far as sales were concerned. Over the past couple of years, premium hatchbacks such as Maruti Baleno and sub compact sedans like the Maruti Dzire have been leaving behind entry level hatchbacks such as the Alto 800 and the K10. As the disposable income in the country is rising the customer is looking for more expensive options in the Indian market, not to mention that cab aggregators are also buying models such as Dzire in greater quantities because the smaller cars are falling out of favor among their customers. This marks a significant change in the car market, one that the car makers are keenly watching.