Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Volvo Auto India launches S60 T6 Petrol

Volvo Auto India has announced the launch of the S60 T6 Petrol. The new model will be available in T6 petrol, automatic 8-speed FWD with 306 hp and a whopping 400 Nm torque.

Priced at Rs. 42 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi/NCR), the vehicle will be retailed through Volvo dealerships across the country.

The new Artemis Cars showroom in Chennai is owned by Ms. Nrithya Shetty and Mr. Sivaganesh Balasubramaniam. Located at Teynampet, Chennai, this stand-alone luxury retail experience is spread over an area of 4,600 sq.ft. having a true Scandinavian ambience. It is a modern and contemporary looking showroom having an ‘inviting interior design’ speaking of the new Volvo’s Retail Experience concept, with a ‘Cool on the outside’ and ‘Warm on the inside’ feel.

Tom von Bonsdorff, Managing Director, Volvo Auto India, said: “India is one of the fastest growing markets for Volvo. An array of recent launches – XC90, V40 Cross Country Petrol, V40 and now S60 T6 Petrol will add a positive thrust to the brand presence in India. The Volvo S60 is a beautifully balanced combination of dynamism, style and comfort. I look forward to further strengthening Volvo car’s presence here. We are happy to bring the new Volvo Retail Experience with our new dealer in Chennai. VAI is confident of expanding its market share and creating more patrons for its brand.”

The Swedish luxury company Volvo Auto India (VAI) established its presence in India in 2007 and has since then worked intensively to market the Swedish brand in this country. 

Volvo Cars currently markets products through its dealerships in South Delhi, West Delhi, Gurgaon, Ahmedabad, Surat, Mumbai, Chandigarh, Coimbatore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Kochi, Vishakhapatnam and Pune. Soon the cars will be seen in Kolkata with a new dealership opening there. The company sells five luxury models.

Hyundai introduces i20 WRC application VR+

With the launch of virtual reality application – VR+, Hyundai Motor is offering smartphone users the chance to experience the speed and excitement of being a part of Hyundai Shell World Rally Team. HYUNDAI VR+ has been developed to provide realistic driving experiences for the fans of motor sports by regularly updating World Rally Championship (WRC) races held in 13 countries each year.

The free-to-download application, available on Apple App store or Google Play, offers smartphone users an immersive insight into the world of Hyundai Shell World Rally Team. The features include a Virtual Reality (VR+) or 360-degree panoramic view play function from the co-driver seat of the Hyundai Shell World Rally Team driver. This application can be best enjoyed using a Google cardboard or any commercial VR dive device in the market. User can also get access to Hyundai Motorsport website and ensures users remain up-to-date with the latest developments, news and YouTube videos from the Hyundai Motorsport team as they embark on a second season in WRC.

The key functions of i20 WRC application VR+ are VR (Cardboard) functionality, 360 degrees panoramic view, Hyundai Motorsport images, 3D games, and Facebook integration within game.

The i20 WRC application VR+ supports five languages – English, German, French, Spanish and Korean.

The World Rally Championship is the pinnacle of motor sports and showcases the cutting edge technology of Hyundai for its cars. Hyundai has deployed the experience of WRC in making i20 to offer driving pleasure with great ride and handling. Hyundai’s rally-ready i20 model highlights the brand’s dynamism and performance pedigree.

WRC is one of the world’s toughest motorsport series, and the vehicle has been engineered to overcome the extreme terrains and weather conditions that competitors face. Hyundai’s long-term goal was to set up an in-house WRC team in Europe and develop a performance rally car, resulting in the WRC i20’s debut in Paris. The World Rally Championship is recognized as one of the most dramatic sporting series on Earth.  It’s a spectacle filled with excitement and dynamism - the perfect embodiment of the Hyundai brand.

The WRC also offers the most technologically diverse challenge for an automotive manufacturer.  Our participation will demonstrate Hyundai’s engineering excellence and durability, and will also help to enhance our road-going vehicles in future. With the rally-ready i20, we are prepared to take on the most technologically diverse challenge for an automotive manufacturer, proving our engineering excellence and helping to inspire future road-going models.

Jubilant Performance Cars appointed Porsche dealer in Mumbai

Jubilant Performance Cars Private Ltd., a subsidiary of Jubilant Motor Works Private Ltd., has announced that it has been appointed as Porsche India’s dealer for Mumbai. 

Jubilant MotorWorks, which operates luxury automotive retail businesses in southern and western India, is a part of the Jubilant Bhartia Group that has business interests in a diverse range of sectors like pharmaceuticals and life sciences, food services, oil and gas, agri & performance polymers and consulting services in aerospace and oilfield industries. 

Jubilant Performance Cars will take over the operations of Porsche Centre Mumbai with immediate effect. The mandate includes the sales and servicing of Porsche’s range of two-door and four-door sports cars in the region. The sales operations will be conducted from the existing state-of-the-art Porsche Centre at Prabhadevi in Mumbai, while a Porsche Service Centre has been set up at Sewri to attend to the immediate after-sales requirements of Porsche cars.

Commenting on the new venture, Mr. K. Subramanian, Director, Jubilant Motor Works, said: “Porsche is a legendary brand and the name adorns the finest sports cars in the world. It is a privilege to represent Porsche in this part of the country and we look forward to working with Porsche India to strengthen its presence further.”

Mr. Anil Reddi, Director, Porsche India, said: “We are pleased to be associated with the highly respected Jubilant Bhartia Group. I am confident that Porsche customers and enthusiasts in the region will benefit from their professionalism and proven track record. With this partnership, we aim to offer our customers an unparalleled purchase and ownership experience.”

The range of Porsche models on sale in India includes the iconic 911 range, Boxster and Cayman mid-engine two-seaters, Panamera sports sedan, Macan and Cayenne SUVs.

Since 2009, Jubilant MotorWorks has been a retail partner of Volkswagen Group Sales India Private Ltd., of which Porsche India is a division.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Yamaha Motor India posts 26% domestic sales growth in June

Yamaha Motor India Sales Pvt. Ltd. has announced a growth of 26% in domestic sales in June 2015 as compared to the corresponding period last year. 

Along with its innovative efforts, ongoing customer-centric activities, exciting product line-up with the likes of its new scooter ‘Fascino’ and 125cc commuter bike Yamaha ‘Saluto’, has been instrumental in boosting its sales.

The company sold 51,432 units in June 2015 as against 40,666 units sold in June last year in the domestic market thereby registering a domestic sales growth of 26%. In the Export markets the company sold 14,708 units in June 2015 as compared to 12,819 units sold in the same month last year achieving a growth of 15%. The overall sales stood at 66,140 units in June 2015 while 53,485 units were sold in June 2014, thereby registering a 24% overall growth.

Commenting on the company’s gradual growth, Mr. Roy Kurian, Vice President - Sales & Marketing, Yamaha Motor India Sales Pvt. Ltd., said: “The incessant growth numbers are a sign of Yamaha’s robust business plan and strategic customer engagement programs. This month we witnessed brisk growth due to our robust product line-up and new launches during the year so far. Our new stylish Scooter ‘Fascino’ and 125 cc bike Yamaha Saluto, have indeed been key in boosting our sales. Also, the new range of Alpha, Ray and Ray Z scooters for the year 2015 enabled with Yamaha’s Next Generation ‘Blue Core’ engine concept continues to be a fundamental growth driver for us. We are hopeful on our sales growth and will be able to post some record numbers in the coming months.”

Mutual fund industry helps bring in macro-economic stability to Indian markets

The Indian mutual fund industry over a period of a decade has crossed Rs. 12 lakh crores of asset under management (AuM), out of which more than 30% are from equity schemes. In 2014-15 the net inflows of equity AUMs crossed Rs. 71,000 crores from total inflows. 

Mr. U.K. Sinha, Chairman, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), acknowledged that the Indian mutual fund industry has helped in countering the volatility caused by the investment pattern of foreign portfolio investors and brought the macro-economic stability to Indian markets. 

Speaking at the 11th edition of CII Mutual Fund Summit held at Mumbai, he observed that the Government decision of allowing the Employees Provident Fund (EPFO) to invest in mutual fund schemes is a great achievement.  

Mr. Sinha mentioned that while the industry is at the peak of optimism it should think of medium to long-term measures for the sustainable growth of the industry. The industry should now focus on how equitably they are serving the requirements of the customers. In the last 3 years the measures like reduction in transaction charges, introduction of consolidated account statements, availability of mutual fund units in demat form, fungibility of total expense ratio, encouraging voting by asset managers to protect interest of minority share holders, addition disclosure of distributors, tax clarity on offshore funds, recent announcement in the budget over tax clarity for scheme mergers and many more.     

Consumer protection is one of the prime focus areas of SEBI and cost to investor will be important aspect of future course of action. The Finance Ministry has also set-up a Financial Stability Development Council to take into account the cost structures, added Mr. Sinha. 

He also shared the concern over the quality of investor education programme carried out by the industry and expressed that AMFI will take the cognizance of the situation. SEBI is also awaiting the judicial verdict on the SRO, further to which it will move forward.  

Mr. Leo Puri, Chairman, CII Mutual Fund Summit 2015, and Managing Director, UTI Asset Management Co. Ltd., stated that acceleration of innovation by investment managers will be critical driver for growth, as firms work to cut through the complexity of distribution channels and product development. It is necessary for the industry to focus on targeted sales, product differentiation, response to regulatory events and operational innovation to efficiently and quickly gain competitive advantage.  

“With rapidly changing customer expectations and other industries raising their bar on services mutual fund industry needs to focus on customers by using the growing prevalence of social media and increasing adoption of direct investment route. There is also a growing need of improving market penetration specially to drive distribution in B-15 markets for which banks could seen as partners for mutual fund sales with their branch networks”, added Mr. Puri.   

Indian asset management industry has also grown at 20 per cent CAGR in the last four years, mentioned Mr. Peeyush Dalmia, Partner, McKinsey & Company, while speaking at CII Mutual Fund Summit. 

He further mentioned that the spilt-up of AuM suggests that close to 72% of the investments comes from top 5 cities and from the remaining, close to 14% comes from the next 10 cities. Significant difference in retail flows of large, medium and small companies are been witnessed in terms market penetration. Private equity investments, ETFs, portfolio management services and REITs can be sighted as alternative market to grow further. To attract investors and providing better services industry can look at shifting customers to digital channels, creating awareness among investors, managing sentiment expressed by investors on social media and fostering collaboration between R&Ts and AMCs. 

Hero MotoCorp augments premium segment portfolio with launch of ‘Xtreme Sports’

Keeping up its aggressive new products initiative, Hero MotoCorp Ltd. (HMCL), the world’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer, has introduced ‘Xtreme Sports’ – the new sportier and more powerful version of its popular 150-cc motorcycle Xtreme.

This is the second product launch from Hero MotoCorp in quick succession in June, having earlier rolled out the new Passion Pro across markets in the country.

The ‘Faster than Ever’ new Xtreme Sports offers not only a sporty ride quality but also one of the best power output in its class. The powerful engine paired with aggressive street fighter styling is set to appeal to the biking enthusiasts of today, while its abundant aesthetic enhancements give it a distinct look on the road.

The market launch of ‘Xtreme Sports’, which was first showcased at the Auto Expo 2014 in Delhi, further augments Hero’s product range in the premium segment.

The ‘Xtreme Sports’ is powered by a 149.2 cc air-cooled, 4-stroke single cylinder engine, producing a maximum power output of 15.6 BHP @ 8500 rpm and maximum torque of 13.5 Nm @ 7000 rpm. The new Xtreme Sports reaches from 0-60 km/h in a mere 4.7 seconds.

Stylish and feature-rich

Increasing the style quotient of the sporty ‘Xtreme Sports’ are a host of new external features, such as the front cowl with aerodynamic visor, new wolf-eye headlamp with aggressive twin LED pilot lamps and winkers. The split step-up seat enhances both looks and riding comfort while the stylish exhaust with the trendy muffler cover adds to the sportiness and enhances heat shielding. The unique LED tail lamp in tandem with a trendy split grab rail makes the bike even more attractive from the rear.

The bike is available in five body colors – Panther Black, Fiery Red, Mercuric Silver and the new Black-Red and Pyro Orange colors.

Safety and convenience

Along with riding pleasure the Xtreme Sports also comes with adequate safety and convenience elements. While tubeless tyres enhance safety of the rider and pillion, the wider rear tyre improves performance and provides better road grip. The new Digi-analog console with side stand indicator improves instrument cluster visibility. The 240 mm front and 220 mm rear disc brakes ensure there is enough stopping power for emergency braking.

Hero MotoCorp is set to roll out a multi-media communication campaign for Xtreme Sports. Based on Xtreme’s positioning – ‘Live off the edge’, the exciting campaign will feature Hero’s brand ambassador and reigning heartthrob of Hindi cinema Ranbir Kapoor. The campaign will premier on television and then be taken on other platforms including print and social media.

The Xtreme Sports is available at all Hero dealerships across the country. 

It is attractively priced at Rs. 72,725/- (ex-showroom Delhi), Rs. 73,194/- (ex-showroom Mumbai), Rs. 71,515/- (ex-showroom Chennai) Rs. 73,902/- (ex-showroom Kolkata) and Rs. 71,729/- (ex-showroom Bangalore). 

Honda Cars India’s domestic sales grow 13% in June

Honda Cars India Ltd. (HCIL), leading manufacturer of premium cars in India, registered monthly domestic sales of 18,380 units in June 2015 against 16,316 units in the corresponding month last year, registering a growth of 13%.

The company sold 44,447 units during April-June 2015 as against 40,718 units sold during the same period last year, marking a growth of 9%.

Speaking on the company’s performance Mr. Jnaneswar Sen, Sr. Vice President - Marketing & Sales, Honda Cars India Ltd., said: “We would like to thank our customers for the continuous support to all our models and are confident that we will continue to do well in respective segments. Currently, we are excited about the launch of the new Honda Jazz which we believe will help us make further inroads in the Indian market.”

HCIL also exported a total of 350 units during June 2015.