Maruti Suzuki, a leading contender in the increasingly competitive and rapidly growing Indian motor industry, has every reason to celebrate. The company exported its one-millionth vehicle in April.
The bright red Suzuki A-Star (known as the Alto in other markets, including South Africa) left the Maruti Suzuki factory by ship, and is destined for a customer in Denmark. The A-Star is Maruti’s fastest selling export product, with 300 000 examples exported in just 38 months.
While Maruti Suzuki exports cars to some 125 countries around the world, the focus of its export operations has shifted during the past 18 months. While European markets used to account for up to 75 percent of the company’s exports, non-EU markets now make up 66 percent of export volumes.
This shift not only reflects the reduced demand from European countries as a result of a depressed economic environment, but also Suzuki Maruti’s ability to identify and service new markets to augment exports.
“Suzuki Auto South Africa is pleased to have contributed to the export success of Maruti Suzuki,” says the company’s managing director, Kazuyuki Yamashita. “We source the highly popular Alto from Maruti Suzuki, and its popularity here underscores Maruti Suzuki’s world-class product quality.”
Yamashita added that Suzuki Auto SA is constantly investigating the feasibility of introducing additional models produced by Maruti Suzuki to the local market. “The combination of quality and cost efficiency offered by the Maruti-manufactured Suzuki products makes them a particularly attractive proposition for the SA market,” Yamashita concluded.
South Africa is already a major market for the Suzuki Maruti-sourced Alto. Based on sales figures from April 2011 to March 2012, it is the third largest seller of Altos on the African continent, and the 11th largest worldwide.
STORY BY SUZUKI