Innova sales rose 42 per cent during April-August even as sales of the rest of the industry declined by one per cent. This is despite a steep Rs 2.5-Rs 4.2 lakh premium on Crysta compared to its predecessor. The people carrier earned a share of 38 per cent in the UV2 segment (length 4,400-4,700mm with price up to Rs 15 lakh), according to Siam.
It is this growth which has attracted the attention of rivals, particularly utility vehicle market leader Mahindra & Mahindra. The Mumbai-based company is believed to be working on an Innova rival which could be introduced next year. The maker of Bolero and Scorpio, Mahindra’s confidence on launching a premium multi-utility vehicle (MUV) is based on its success with the XUV500, a premium sports utility vehicle. The XUV500 is the largest selling SUV in its category with a price being upwards of Rs 10 lakh.
M&M sales in the UV2 segment, where it has models such as Scorpio, Xylo, Bolero Plus and XUV500, dropped 12 per cent in the period till August. A spokesperson of Mahindra & Mahindra stated, "As a matter of policy we do not comment on any future products".
M&M has failed to see any huge and sustained jump in volumes with each of its recent launches even as rival products in the same segment saw healthy demand. The KUV100, TUV300 and Nuvo Sport from M&M has seen weak demand compared to Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and Hyundai Creta.
M&M's previous attempt to establish itself as a strong player in the MUV segment and simultaneously dislodge sedans ended with a disappointment. Sales of the Xylo have dipped to alarmingly low levels forcing the company to revisit plans.