Hyundai cars: SUV demand strong & stable, aim to work on improved powertrains: Hyundai’s SS Kim – Times of India


NEW DELHI: Hitting the 10-lakh SUV sales landmark, Hyundai is confident that the demand for SUV body type is strong, stable, and sustained.
“From the Indian customer point of view, SUVs are a very practical mode of transportation. Road conditions and driving patterns suit SUVs. The excitement in the market is also high with several OEMs coming forward with their products,” said SS Kim, MD & CEO, Hyundai Motor India.
The Korean carmakers recently announced the 10-lakh landmark SUV sales in India on the back of Creta and Venue. Kim believes the demand for SUVs is strong and stable in coming years. According to Kim, the SUV segment for HMIL has progressively grown over the last half-decade.
“Four years ago, SUVs contributed to only 15 per cent of overall sales for Hyundai. The number has risen to 30 per cent and close to 46 per cent in last two years respectively,” Kim added. In the calendar year 2020, the company cumulatively sold 1.80 lakh units of Venue and Creta, and emerged as the top-selling SUV manufacturer in the country.
Hyundai was the first carmaker to introduce an electric SUV in the Indian market, when Kona was launched in 2019. Commenting on the electrification roadmap, Kim said, “Adoption of EVs is a gradual process and will be dependent on infrastructure, battery manufacture and several other factors. Meanwhile, OEMs can deliver improved petrol and diesel powertrains to the customers.”
Hyundai is introducing Alcazar, a premium three-row SUV, with a new petrol engine alongside 1.5-litre diesel engine. Alcazar’s rivals are heavily dependent on diesel. The customer sentiments also tilt towards diesel, however, Hyundai is bullish on petrol. According to a company official, “When Creta was introduced in 2015, the penetration of petrol was 2 per cent. Today, that has risen to almost 45 per cent. With Alcazar, we are offering a good array of options to the customer and are confident of a positive response.”
Alcazar is landing in a segment which booming lately but doesn’t drive a significant volume yet. Aware of the fact, Hyundai feels it’s a responsibility to offer products across price range and segments. “Currently, in terms of segment, the sub-4-metre and compact SUVs have good demand.

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