Hyundai has made a strong-hold on the number two position in India since quite a long time. We talk to Mr. Rakesh Srivastva to know the plans of the Korean manufacturer.
Q. 1: First of congratulations on the 'Grand' success of the Grand i10, after making it to the India's top-five selling car brands in a very short span of time, it now wins the ICOTY 2014. How do you feel about it?
Ans: We are extremely happy with Grand i10 winning ICOTY 2014. Grand i10 is a world-class product developed for the Indian market and winning the ICOTY 2014 marks its phenomenal success. The car has created a new benchmark in terms of quality, features and technology, offering a higher value proposition to Indian customers.
Q. 2: Now when the 2014 Indian Auto Expo is nearing, what all products can we expect Hyundai to display at the event?
Ans: Hyundai would be launching 2 new products next year targeting growth and market share increase.
Q. 3: We have seen the huge response the new Hyundai Grand i10 has received across the nation; don't you think it has eaten into the sales of regular i10?
Ans: i10 competes in the mid compact segment and Grand i10 competes in the compact high entry segment. Both the products cater to different set of customers and have been successful in their respective segments.
Q. 4: Since the Indian automobile market has experienced a negative growth this fiscal, what will be your strategy to maintain the growth?
Ans: HMIL will focus on its fresh line of products through extensive marketing activities in 2014. We will continuously improve the price value equations by refreshing all our existing models, by introducing new models and targeting the existing and emerging segments while maintaining our modern premium image. We have plans of launching new cars every year for the next few years. Our turnaround strategy for 2014 will be to increase our market share in India along with more penetration in rural markets. In 2014 - our intention is to further increase our dealership presence along with rural sales outlets. At present we have 382 dealerships and 305 rural sales outlets to serve customers in different markets.
Q. 5: Hyundai's product strategy has always been very clear, the company launches one major product every year and then keeps it focus on that. Considering that the competitors are planning to launch multiple products in 2014, can we also expect Hyundai to bring several products to counter those?
Ans: We will definitely unveil some new concepts and products in the year 2014; and also will expand our current product portfolio.
Q. 6: What's your view point on Compact SUV and UV segments, which are one of the fastest growing ones in India today, but Hyundai doesn't have any product in both the segments yet?
Ans: With the changing phase of the auto industry, the demands and the preferences of the Indian customers are also changing. As the new segments have been introduced in the market, Hyundai will also soon come up with new concepts to cater these segments.
Q. 7: One key area on which you think Hyundai India needs to work on priority as mere selling in numbers is not enough?
Ans: Hyundai products are benchmark creator and trendsetter in their respective segments. All our products are modern premium and offer higher aspirational value leading to higher customer acceptance. We believe during adverse market conditions ; customers opt for tried and tested brand like Hyundai which have high aspirational value and low cost of ownership.