Of late, we have been hearing so much about capacity constraints that we don’t raise an eyebrow at a car having long waiting periods. Instead, it has become something that indicates the successful status of a particular model. Maruti Suzuki India and Volkswagen are badly affected by capacity constraints and both are facing a lot of trouble delivering their respective models on time.
And now we hear that we have a new addition to the club of car makers that are being affected by shortages in capacity. Surprising, but we are talking about Mahindra & Mahindra. The Indian SUV manufacturing company is celebrating its 10 years of grand success of the Bolero. Now when this SUV was launched way back in 2001, owing to its simple looks and super competitive pricing, it became an instant hit with the crowds in the tier II and tier III cities.
M&M decided to relaunch the popular SUV in 2007, and since then it has seen an increase in Bolero sales in big cities too. Consequently, the company, despite selling 70,000 units each year, has fallen victim to capacity constraints with the waiting list extending from 4 to 6 weeks. The company now plans re-launch the Bolero for the third time, as well as expand the production of the SUV at its Chakan plant, so the rising demand can be satisfied. The company had brought in the Bolero CRDe to the Bolero line-up back in 2008. This also happens to be the last addition in the Bolero family.
On the occasion, Vivek Nayer, senior vice-president of marketing, automotive sector said, “The Bolero’s re-launch done by the company in 2007 attached an aspirational imagery to the brand post which it has been showing consistent growth for the auto major in the country. It has out-performed the category and increased its market share from 19 to 29 per cent since 2006-07. About 75-80 per cent of the sales volumes are from smaller towns and the remaining 20-25 per cent from metros.”
Mahindra Bolero is manufactured at the Nashik plant, which has an annual production capacity of 1.50 lakh units. The plant also manufactures other popular Mahindra SUVs such as Xylo and the Scorpio.
“These are decisions taken by the company from time-to-time,” said Nayer.
The SUV is named after slow-tempo Latin music, and is powered by the 2500 cc, 4-cylinder diesel engine that delivers maximum power of 72.5 bhp. The robust chassis and rugged look has made it a very distinguishable product on the Indian roads.
And now that Mahindra has closed the deal with Korean SUV manufacturer, Ssangyong Motors, we will see more SUVs in the portfolio of the Indian car manufacturer.