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November 07, 2013

Report 5-India’s Competitive Automobile Market

Analysts:Hiroki Oda, INTAGE INDIA Private Limited Masashi Takahashi, DCG & Service Industry Division, INTAGE, Inc.


  • The car brand most widely owned by people in India at present is the MARUTI SUZUKI.
  • As for car brands people want to buy next, VW ranks at the top, followed by HYUNDAI and then MARUTI SUZUKI.


1. "Car brands people own now"
MARUTI SUZUKI ranks at the top, at 34.3%, followed by HYUNDAI and HONDA.

[Figure 1] Top 10 car brands people own now in India

2. "Car brands people want to buy next"
Volkswagen (VW) ranks at the top, at 25.7%, followed by HYUNDAI and MARUTI SUZUKI.

[Figure 2] Top 10 car brands people want to buy next

The car brand most widely owned in the Indian automobile market at present is the MARUTI SUZUKI, which accounts for approximately one-third of the total share. HYUNDAI and HONDA take the second and third rankings, with shares of about 20% and 12%. Volkswagen (VW) ranks at the top among "car brands people want to buy next." MARUTI SUZUKI’s high ranking may stem from recent fuel prices in India, where surging oil prices are generating a growing price gap between diesel fuel and gasoline. In Delhi in the three years from September 2010 to September 2013, diesel prices rose by about 14 rupees, while gasoline prices rose by about 24. Consumer demand for diesel automobiles is expected to continue growing in response to the price differential. In addition, MARUTI SUZUKI, which ranks the highest among "car brands people own now," has introduced strategies not only to develop new diesel models, but also to promote sales more effectively in suburban areas. The extra efforts by MARUTI SUZUKI will be a decisive factor in the fiercely competitive Indian diesel market.
The "CrossPolo," the new Polo from VW announced last December, may be a major factor behind VW’s top-ranking as a "car brand people want to buy next." People have high expectations of the CrossPolo, a 1.2-liter diesel model scheduled to sell from this August.

Maruti Suzuki India Limited

SUZUKI acquired a controlling share of "Maruti Udyog" in 2002 and changed its name to MARUTI SUZUKI in 2007. Today it ranks as the most widely owned brand in the Indian market. The Annual Report from MARUTI SUZUKI offers two major reasons to explain its large share of the market. First, sales of diesel models and sales in suburban areas are growing. To benefit from the growing price gap between gasoline and diesel oil (as of September 2013, gasoline prices were about 25 rupees (approx. 39 yen) higher than diesel prices per liter), MARUTI SUZUKI has boosted the manufacture of diesel models. Second, MARUTI SUZUKI has expanded its sales network to Tier II and Tier III*1 suburbs and has increased personnel resources for sales in these areas. These moves have pushed up sales in Tier II and Tier III areas by approximately 3% (about 46,000 units) compared to the previous year. MARUTI SUZUKI also has a high ranking (about 21%) among "car brands people want to buy next." Competition is expected to remain tough, however, as rivals are actively promoting their own products

  • *1 Tier II, city with a population of from 1 million to 4 million; Tier III, city with a population from 500,000 to 1 million

Honda Cars India Ltd.

HONDA ranks 4th, side by side with TOYOTA, as a "car brand people want to buy next." One factor behind Honda’s high ranking is the strong showing of the new lineup of "Amaze" compact sedans launched this year. The low-price, diesel "Amaze" sedans are rated highly among fuel-conscious consumers and have sold well in the stagnant Indian car market. Like MARUTI SUZUKI, HONDA also expects to grow in the Tier II and Tier III markets. According to earlier comments from Honda, the "Amaze" lineup will be targeted for these markets.

Volkswagen India Private Limited

Volkswagen (VW) ranks at the top among "car brands people want to buy next." This high ranking stems partly from the "CrossPolo," a new Hatchback "Polo" model launched in the Indian market. The 1.2-litre diesel "CrossPolo" comes with various new features, including improved front and rear bumpers, wheel arches, mirrors, and roof-rails. This sporty crossover model is designed for consumers interested in premium hatchbacks.
Specialists expect the "CrossPolo," with its many attractive features and impressively low fuel consumption, to sell well in the Indian automobile market.

Survey Overview

Survey Method Internet Survey
Survey Area India
Respondents Males and females, aged 20 to 59
Survey Samples 300 persons (150 males and 150 females)
Survey Period July 2013
Organization Conducting the Survey INTAGE Inc.

Asia Insight Report

INTAGE Inc. publishes the "Asia Insight Report" based on spontaneous surveys conducted in the Asian region in collaboration with overseas INTAGE subsidiaries to identify trends in attitudes and behavior on various themes.
Part 5 of the Report, "India Market Survey - Automobiles," was a survey conducted in India in July 2013. About 300 Males and females (aged from 20 to 59) were selected to respond to questions about automobiles. Following are the survey results.