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Old 7th June 2020, 11:27   #1
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Default Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

The Product Life Cycle(PLC) management is well known in all manufacturing segments and is not different for the auto industry.

When a vehicle is launched, it goes through four stages: introduction, growth, maturity and decline. Each of these stages corresponds with a different amount of sales.

Manufacturers try to maximize its returns in all stages the sales pitch is different through out the life cycle of the vehicle.

Introductory phase: All features are highlighted as the "latest and the greatest" in comparison to competition.

Growth: Brand differentiation is the key in this phase.

Maturity phase: As the growth slows , more visibility to the vehicle is needed and hence new set of promotions, etc are launched as competition becomes fierce.

Decline: It becomes evident to the manufacturer as its sales decline and companies normally slash the prices to clear off its stock and make way for the new vehicle.

Showcasing the Lifecycle Analysis of the models sold by various OEMs in India. Will start with the nation’s largest car maker – Maruti Suzuki

Considering the huge investment; the model has sell a specific number of units in the mentioned timeline to make profits for the carmaker. An early death for a model shall convert into heavy irreparable losses. It is crucial that a model/platform sells minimum units to work profitable to the OEM.
An OEM having models with longer PLCs acts as a strategic advantage as the respective OEM not only makes more money out of it; but would be building customer base as well.
The Product Lifecycle also defines on how fast the OEM will need to work either to upgrade the model or bring the next model in the pipeline. Agility of the carmaker will make all the difference here. OEMs who can assess the market condition well in advance and are able to upgrade/launch a new model will have higher chances to gain market share.
Lifecycle of Maruti Suzuki’s Models :

-Maruti Suzuki has introduced almost 26 models in the Indian Market since 1983.

-Out of these 26 models; 12 models has seen the end of its lifecycle and has either exited the Indian market or discontinued globally.

-As on date; 14 models are in sale in the sub-continent and with this Maruti Suzuki commands >50% market share.

Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-marutimodelslifecycle.jpg

Discontinued Maruti Suzuki models list and their age:

- Omni & Gypsy served Maruti Suzuki in India for almost 35 years! Both the models were discontinued owing to tighter emission and safety norms. With near to 35 years of sales in the Indian market, Maruti Omni probably shall be the second longest production car in India, next only to Hindustan Ambassador.

Maruti 800 was actually the first offering from Maruti Suzuki India and is widely regarded as the most influential automobile in India – About 2.66 million Maruti 800s were sold in India during its lifetime.

Another cult hatch – Zen survived for over 20 years in India. Zen was Maruti India’s first world car and was exported to Europe as early as 1994. Besides being exported to Europe from 1994 to 2004, it has also been exported to several other countries. The Zen also quickly became a hit with the Indian Racing Scene with highly modified versions of the 993 cc G10B engine topping 100+ Bhp.

Esteem was Maruti’s attempt to cater the executive sedan segment and could sell for almost 10 years here.

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Maruti Suzuki models currently on sale in India :

Wagon R has an enviable performance in the Indian market. The model has sold 24,14,328 units in the past 20+ years in India! The model still doesn’t show sign of ageing and has sold 1,56,724 units in the last Financial Year (FY20). Which analyst/economist can guess on which stage of product lifecycle Wagon R is in?

Another blockbuster model from Maruti’s stable – Alto has been in the Indian market for over 19 years! Still Alto commands the title as one of the best selling models in India. The model has sold 39,78,285 units and is definitely the best selling hatchback in India’s history. The model was also India’s highest selling car for FY20 with sale of 1,90,814 units. How to categorize it in the product lifecycle ? Exceptions?

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Maruti Suzuki has found stellar success in India and the life of its models has always been much higher than its peers and the reason its models command the best resale value in India and still its so called aged models has high demand.

Though Maruti had its fair share of not so successful models (Esteem/SX4/A-star); Majority of Maruti’s models have been bestsellers in its segment and are still seeing demand irrespective of the age.
Maruti has also been aggressive in bringing out relevant updates on its models to renew the demand over time. This has ensured that Maruti Suzuki makes enough profits even though the models are priced extremely aggressively and the ticket price is smaller too.

But in this fierce competitive times it will be interesting to see how it rejigs its portfolio and differentiate itself from competition to secure its + 50% market share.
Not only it should bring new vehicles in segments currently not present( Jimny, Vitara, etc), it will need to reduce its PLC to garner and sustain customers interest ( ring fencing existing customers and bring new ones) in its products.

Strong Hybrids, EV's and its partnership with Toyota could be the differentiation that is needed at securing its leadership at the current level.


Last edited by volkman10 : 7th June 2020 at 11:32.
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Old 7th June 2020, 11:37   #2
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Default re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

Very interesting topic. A big reason for the success of the top 3 in our country - Suzuki, Hyundai, and M&M is their product lifecycle management. All three make it a point that brands are never abandoned and nurtured with timely feature additions.

Advertisements are also a big part of stretching the life cycle of the products. Every now and then models will start falling out of the customer's consideration set. A simple sticker job and advertising the hell out of it is how Suzuki usually manages such a temporary drop in sales.

Last edited by padmrajravi : 7th June 2020 at 11:45.
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Old 7th June 2020, 13:32   #3
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Default re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment


I maybe wrong and may have not really understood the article properly

But other than the Omni and Gypsy, most others have had atleast a generation change, even the 800 (SS80 to SB308).

Okay, maybe not the 1000/Esteem, but the WagonR and Alto did have generational changes.

Name plates can be continuous, even half a century old.

But PLC?

Is it applied to name plates? Or the specific generation.

Or applied to models that chug along with just facelifts and the basic engine/platform just tweaked slightly?

One thing is for sure.

Our market really has long PLCs. More so on the unhealthy side, especially for non commercial private cars.

The given standard is ~6 years for cars and ~10 years for truck based ones.
Sure the emission norms and especially crash norms has really forced companies to end this practice.

Still we can see Eeco and Bolero chugging just fine with updates, but has more to do with lack of proper competition.

Last edited by DicKy : 7th June 2020 at 13:45.
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Old 9th June 2020, 19:27   #4
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Default Re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

Product Lifecycle – Tata Motors

-Tata Motors has introduced 16 models in the Indian Market since 1991.

- Out of these 16 models; 11 have been discontinued! Only 5 models are currently on sale in the Indian soil.

-Many of iconic offerings – Indica / Safari / Sumo / Nano have been discontinued.

Tata Motors have restructured their overall portfolio on the Impact Design 2.0 with the intent of making Tata cars more desirable and elevate their equity as a reliable carmaker
Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-tatamodelslifecycle-1.jpg

The Discontinued Models:( Hexa is debatable in the chart?)

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Currently on sale:

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Last edited by volkman10 : 9th June 2020 at 19:28.
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Old 28th June 2020, 14:35   #5
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Default Re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

Product Lifecycle – Hyundai Motor

Hyundai Motor India Ltd is India’s second largest passenger car manufacturer with 17.6% market share as of FY2020.

Discontinued Models:

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Hyundai Santro (Oct’98 to Dec’15) :

Though the Santro nameplate is still alive in India it has been bifurcated into Sales of 1st & 2nd generation in list of discontinued models as it was derived from the Atos Prime model while third generation is practically a standalone model.

-Hyundai Santro was launched on 23 September 1998 and was a runaway success! Within a few months of its inception; HMIL became the second largest automobile manufacturer and the largest automobile exporter in India thanks to the model.

The first generation Santro was also sold in Europe as the Atos Prime and in South Korea and Indonesia as the Kia Visto. It was known as the Santro Zip in India from 1998 to 2006 and has been India’s one of the best selling models in its time.

After the Kia Visto was replaced by the Kia Picanto in 2004 globally, the Santro was launched in its second generation avatar in 2003. While the 2003 facelift was marketed as part of the first generation, Hyundai India has produced the 2003 Santro as a second generation model with tweaks to the car platform, and new features. It was known as the Santro Xing in India from 2003 to 2015.

The sales trend for the Santro is plotted here for reference :

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-Santro saw its sales peak in 2006-07 and it was in mid of its lifecycle.
Even during the end of its lifecycle it was selling decent numbers – It sold over 36k units in the last 12 months with an average of 3,054 units/mth.

Hyundai Accent (Nov’19 to Sep’13) :

It was primarily the global second generation model that was launched in India in October 1999 as the “Accent” and was still in production after some minor facelifts; the car was phased out in Sep 2013.
Accent future led way to the inception of Verna both globally and in India. Rather the third generation Accent was termed ‘Verna’. In India; both Accent and the costlier Verna were sold together!

Hyundai Sonata (July’01 to Dec’14):

The model sold 9,541 units in the 14 years its existed in India. The model sold in India was fourth & fifth generation models.

Hyundai i10 (Oct’07 to Dec’16) :

The i10 replaced the Hyundai Atos in the global model line-up. The second generation of the car was presented in August 2013 and released in the beginning of 2014.
The first generation i10 had its world premiere on 31 October 2007, in New Delhi, India. The car was targeted primarily at the Indian market and intended for production in India, given the popularity of hatchback subcompacts in the country and was also intended to replace the Santro.

Hyundai Eon (Sep’11 to Nov’18):

The Eon was designed jointly between the Hyundai R&D centers in Namyang, South Korea, and Hyderabad, India. In August 2018, Hyundai announced that the Eon would be discontinued as the car was not compliant with new safety regulations that will be implemented in October 2019 and the Bharat Stage VI emissions regulations that will be enforced in April 2020.

Its replacement, the third generation Santro, had been released before the festive season of 2018.

Hyundai Getz (Sep’04 to Apr’10) :

The model was manufactured in the Hyundai Motor India factory in between 2004 and 2009. It sold 71,882 units in the 68 months of its sales in India.

Hyundai Terracan (Aug’04 to Nov’06):

– The model actually featured a chassis derived from the second generation Mitsubishi Pajero.

Models currently on Sale in India:

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Hyundai Aura (Jan’20 till date) :

– It is a sedan based on the Hyundai Grand i10 Nios, and was designed primarily for the Indian market. It is the successor to the Hyundai Xcent, a different nameplate is used as the Xcent continued in production mainly for fleet and commercial customers. The Aura was launched on 21st January 2020 in India.

Hyundai Venue (May’19 till date):

The Venue is Hyundai’s smallest crossover! It fits below the Hyundai Kona in Hyundai’s international lineup and below the Hyundai Creta in India and other markets where the Creta is sold. The Venue was launched on May 21, 2019 in India and occupies the sub 4-meter SUV category, benefitting from the Indian tax benefits for cars shorter than 4 meters.

Hyundai Kona (June’19 till date) :

In the year 2019, Hyundai launched an Electric Lite version as Kona Electric in India. It was India’s first electric SUV brought in as a CBU.

Hyundai New Santro (Oct’18 till date) :
Santro marque single handedly made Hyundai as India’s second biggest car manufacturer. While the nameplate was discontinued in 2015; Hyundai revived it in 2018 to cash on the brand. It would also mark 20 years for the nameplate in India and the brand was so revered that even a stamp was released in India!

But its sales not in the league of its competition and remains to be seen its how it survives.

Hyundai Creta (June’15 to date)

The Creta is sold in the Indian market since 2015 and has been the country’s best selling Mid-SUV since then. Initially intended for the Indian market, the Creta was launched subsequently in China and Russia. It is manufactured by Beijing Hyundai, Hyundai India (from 2015), Hyundai Brazil, Hyundai Rus and Algeria’s TMC (from 2016), but not marketed in Europe.
The model was based on the Hyundai–Kia platform that underpins the Kia Soul, Hyundai i30, Hyundai Elantra and Kia Cee’d / Seltos.

Hyundai Xcent (Mar’14 till date):

The Xcent was launched on March 12, 2014 to compete with the Tata Zest, Honda Amaze and the Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire. The Xcent is currently sold alongside the Aura as a fleet sales only.

Hyundai Grand i10 (Aug’13 till date):

It slotted between the first generation i10, which was continued to be manufactured for the Indian market, and the i20.
The third generation i10 was unveiled in India on 7 August 2019 as the Grand i10 Nios. It was launched on 20 August 2019 and offered in 10 variants across petrol and diesel engines as well as manual and automatic transmissions.

Hyundai i20 (Dec’08 till date):

The i20 replaced the Getz in nearly all of Hyundai’s markets. The i20 used a completely new platform that was created at Hyundai’s European technical centre in Rüsselsheim to allow Hyundai to move into Europe’s highly competitive subcompact B segment. The second generation i20 was launched in August 2014 in India as the Elite i20. It eventually won the 2015 Indian Car Of The Year (ICOTY) in December 2014. The model has been one of the best selling premium hatchbacks in India right since inception.

Hyundai Elantra (Apr’04 till date) :

The global third generation model was launched in 2004. The model sales has been extremely slow since launch and even the latest 6th gen model couldn’t bring volumes. Infact it sold just 692 units in FY2020.

Hyundai Verna (Sep’06 till date):

It was nothing but the third generation Accent. However; it fared much better than the Accent and could fare in the list of best selling Executive Sedans even as on date. The current model is the fifth generation model (of Accent)


Last edited by volkman10 : 28th June 2020 at 14:36.
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Old 11th November 2020, 08:02   #6
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Product Lifecycle – Honda Cars:

Honda has been successful in selling one of the longest running sedan nameplate in India – City. The sedan marked Honda’s entrance in the Indian market in 1998 and it quickly became a success and one of the top selling cars in its segment.
It helped Honda establish itself as a premium car maker in the Indian market and customers used to look up to the brand with admiration. It had the Japanese Durability, Quality & Reliability and won many fans over these years.
However; it was often criticized for not having a diesel model in the portfolio and later the brand was questioned for its varying quality levels in the models.
- The OEM is still dependent on Sedans for its sales volumes – In Oct’20; over 83% of Honda’s volumes came from its sedans (Amaze, City & Civic).

- Too slow in decision making for an aggressive auto segment, and India seem not in their priority list.

1. Discontinued Models::

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-Accord Old (Jun’01 to Oct’14):
The model was one of the most luxurious and spacious car of its era and attracted a lot of buyers. Honda sold around 37,362 units in the 13 years lifetime. Honda surprisingly decided to let go the nameplate in India as the Global 9th gen Accord was launched elsewhere.

-Brio (Sep’11 to Mar’19):
The sales took off in its initial days and the model registered its all time highest monthly sales in Mar’12 when 6,355 Brio were sold in that month! However; Brio volumes dipped year after year and Honda decided to discontinue the model in February 2019, leaving the Amaze as the entry level offering for the Indian market.

-BRV (Apr’16 to Jan’20):
he model shared its platform with the second-generation Mobilio, which itself was based on the lengthened Brio platform. As the model shared many bits from the cheaper sibling Brio – It received a lot of flak and in a way was demeaning to Honda brand. The model didn’t perform as per expectations and was discontinued just within 4 years of launch. It anyhow sold just 39,148 units during its lifetime in the Indian market.

-Mobilio (July’14 to Mar’17):

The Mobilio was introduced into the Indian market in July 2014. It was based on the Brio platform and that became the model’s biggest problem. The model had all the essential bits and practicality of an MPV – However; the cost and similarity with Brio wasn’t accepted by buyers and couldn’t sell well in the subcontinent. Only 40,793 units were sold during its lifetime.

-Accord New (Oct’16 to Sep’17):
In a desperate bid to regain its premium tag; Honda decided to renew Accord nameplate for the Indian market. The hybrid avatar of the model was launched and the steep initial price just nailed the coffin. The model couldn’t even sell 100 units in its second run in the Indian market and was discontinued within 1 year of its launch!

List of Honda Cars models currently on sale in India:

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- Honda City : City nameplate has been synonymous with brand Honda in India.

City has been the ultimate segment leader right since inception and the Market Share have gone to all time high in 2004-05 period. Even as on date; City commands a Market Share of 34% and hasn’t left the throne. Very few models in the Indian market can boast of such consistency. However; the overall segment volumes have dropped over time and has resulted in tapering sales numbers for the marque.

The sedan marked Honda’s entrance in the Indian market in 1998 and it quickly became a success and one of the top selling cars in its segment. It came with a 1.3-litre and a 1.5-litre engine.Sales of the City in India contributes to 25 percent of global sales and the City has been Honda’s best selling model in India right since beginning. Even now there are months; where City sales have been very similar to that our much cheaper Amaze sedan. The City in the past 22 years has gone multiple changes (5 generations to be precise) and the same has been evident on the overall sales of the modeL
Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-hondacitysalesmarketsharetrend.jpeg

- Honda CR-V :

The global second generation was launched in the Indian market in 2003 (as a CBU). The car was powered by a K24A1 engine, it was a 2-litre motor capable of producing 160hp of power and about 190Nm of peak torque. Though the car for south-east Asia was detuned and it produced 150hp of power and same torque figures. CR-V can be termed as India’s First Compact Crossover or Soft Roader SUV. While the buyers in the premium segment were aligned towards Sedans, CR-V did a phenomenal job to pull them towards SUVs. The model saw 5 generation changes and the current model is 5th generation in the iteration.

-Honda Amaze :

Honda launched the Amaze in India in April 2013 and was developed at Honda R&D Asia Pacific Co., Ltd. situated at Bangkok, Thailand. It is also the smallest sedan in Honda’s global line-up. Amaze was Honda’s first diesel offering in India.
The Amaze, now in its second-generation, is currently Honda’s largest selling model in India. The model has sold over 4.16 Lakh units till date and has been the OEMs second most successful car in the Indian market (after City).

-Honda Jazz (New):
Inspired by Hyundai i20’s success; Honda was eager to renew the Jazz nameplate and relaunched the model in June 2015. This time Honda bought it in both Petrol & Diesel engine configurations. Also CVT automatic was offered in Petrol. It worked really well and sold 44,742 units in the first 12 months of the launch.
However; with the launch of Maruti Suzuki's Baleno in October 2015 the Jazz was in trouble. It just could match to the feature loaded premium offering at the price offered by Maruti.
No further updates nor price cuts could save the Jazz. Only time will tell will this car will fade away.

- Honda WR-V:
Similar to all Honda models; even WR-V received tremendous response and garnered 23,000 booking in less than four months after launch. The model outsold the sibling Jazz and gave hopes of revival to Honda. However; the lame petrol engine and unavailability of automatic option led to the downfall and the model couldn’t protect its share from the likes of Nexon, Venue or Brezza. The sales is currently averaging to just 743 units / month (FY21).

- Honda Civic (10th Gen):
Even though the model emerged as the segment leader; the volumes have been negligible. Only 6,010 units were sold since the model was launched (in the past 20 months). With the oust of Accord; Civic now remains the costliest Honda sedan to be on sale in India.

If Honda continue to ignore the Indian Auto segment where there is a continued demand for SUV's then they will continue to be in the current state.
So, what does Honda need to gain a stronger foothold in the Indian market? We all know the answer, except (guess) Honda.


Last edited by volkman10 : 11th November 2020 at 08:03.
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Old 11th November 2020, 10:25   #7
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Default Re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

I find the Product Lifecycle mentioned for some Maruti, Hyundai model confusing, where the product has actually changed where only nameplate remains the same. For example Swift,Wagon R and Dzire are in their 3rd generation, Ertiga and Alto are in their 2nd generation, and Verna is in 3rd generation. Between the generation changes, the platform and some times the engine also got changed, so it is basically a new car with same name plate. The international equivalent would be Corolla, Civic etc where nameplate is close to 50 year old, but the actual product lifecycle is 5 year in average. (In the original list for Hyundai, only 1st gen of Santro is considered for PLC, but for other cars all 3 generations are considered as same product)
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Old 11th November 2020, 13:40   #8
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Default Re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

Originally Posted by volkman10 View Post
Discontinued Maruti Suzuki models list and their age:
You missed Suzuki Versa in the list.
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Old 15th March 2021, 19:47   #9
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Product Lifecycle Analysis – As Renault India turns 10 in June '21.

Renault had launched its first car in India - the Fluence. The French Automaker has come a long way since then and has launched a total of 10 models in the Indian market and has sold over 7.15L units (Inception till Feb'21).

-Out of the 10 models launched in the Indian soil; 6 are already discontinued which contributed just 61.6K units (8.6%) to its overall Volume.

- Renault tasted success after the launch of Duster in Jul'12 (1.97L units sold till date) & Kwid in Sep'15 (3.82L units sold till date).

Renault India's sales journey in the subcontinent to date:

Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-1.jpg

- Kwid has been the most successful product in Renault India's lineup. It has over 53% contribution in the OEMs lifetime volumes!

- Duster helped the French major establish itself as a prominent player in the Indian market. Duster was one of the first models in the Mid-SUV segment and taught the biggies like Hyundai how to rake in volumes in the >Rs.10 Lakh segment (Creta).

Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-2.jpg

Current model lineup of Renault:

Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment-3.jpg

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Old 15th March 2021, 20:46   #10
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Default Re: Product Life Cycle : Indian Auto Segment

The Zen was discontinued way before 2014. I think what was discontinued in 2014 was the Zen Estillo, which doesn't count as Zen! The customers rejected it. It was introduced around 2005 I think.
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