The Telegraph
Monday , March 24 , 2014
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Hyundai bets on new Verna


New Delhi, March 23: Hyundai Motor India Limited has launched a variant of its bestseller Fluidic Verna for Rs 7.17 lakh.

India’s second largest car maker hopes to regain the market it lost to the new Honda City sedan, which has been a runaway hit, selling 7,213 units in February alone.

Hyundai had reported a 14.9 per cent decline in sales at 46,505 units in February against 54,665 units in the year-ago period.

The GL variant of the Verna will be available in both petrol and diesel options. While the petrol variant is priced at Rs 7.17 lakh, the diesel car will come at Rs 8.35 lakh.

The car will have features such as keyless entry, electrically adjustable outside rear view mirror and power steering.

Hyundai believes the variant is competitively priced vis--vis the City. The City is priced between Rs 7.42 lakh and Rs 10.98 lakh for its petrol variant and Rs 8.62 lakh and Rs 11.10 lakh for the diesel model.

Honda sales grew 123 per cent to 14,543 units in February against 6,510 units in the same month last year, powered by the the City and Amaze.

Hyundai had recently launched the cheapest compact sedan — Xcent — priced between Rs 4.66 lakh and Rs 7.19 lakh to compete with the Honda Amaze and Maruti’s Suzuki DZire.

The DZire is priced between Rs 4.85 lakh and Rs 7.32 lakh, while the Amaze comes for Rs 4.99 and Rs 7.55 lakh.

The Xcent is available in two engine options — 1.2-litre petrol and 1.1-litre diesel. The sedan is built on the same platform as the compact car Grand i10, which Hyundai had launched in September.

With the Xcent, the company hopes for a positive sales growth this year after witnessing an overall decline of 1.2 per cent at 6.33 lakh units in 2013. The new model will complete Hyundai’s portfolio in the sedan segment from the entry level sub-four metre to the premium executive.

“The compact sedan segment has been one of the major drivers of the Indian car market with about 24,000 units a month. We believe the segment will continue to grow and the Xcent will further increase the growth,” Hyundai senior vice-president Rakesh Srivastava said.