If anything, the Maruti Suzuki Baleno has been a major profit driver for the Indo-Japanese carmaker in the country. Launched in October 2015, Maruti's popular premium hatchback's sales have recently reached the 75,000 mark in India in less than 9 months. This shows the kind of popularity the car is enjoying in the Indian market. The Baleno has continued to garner respectable demand in the country and currently commands a waiting period of 6 to 8 months, depending on the variant. The funny part is, it was only last month that the company announced its plans to increase the hatchback's production in India to meet the growing demand and bring down the waiting period.
Now this isn't all that surprising to us considering Maruti currently manufactures the Baleno for both the domestic as well as the export markets. Last time when we reported about Maruti's plan to increase production, we were informed that the company had a backlog of over 45,000 orders for the car, which is clearly seen from the waiting period for the Baleno. If you think about it, if Maruti Suzuki had in fact completed its remaining deliveries, then the car's sales would have crossed the 1 lakh mark by now.
Earlier, R S Kalsi, Executive Director, Marketing and Sales, Maruti Suzuki India, explained that the company is toiling to "de-bottleneck the lines and enhance production". Baleno's production has already been doubled to nearly 12,000 units per month and Maruti Suzuki aims to further increase it. That said, with the more powerful Baleno RS and the all-new Ignis, seen at the 2016 Auto Expo, set to be launched in India later this year, Maruti might have a tough time fulfilling that claim.
All that said, the carmaker will see some relief once the production at Suzuki's Gujarat plant begins next year. The company's plan to increase production will be further aided by this upcoming plant, which will initially offer a production capacity of 2,50,000 units per year and will supply vehicles and components to Maruti Suzuki India. Read our Maruti Suzuki Baleno review here.
Maruti Suzuki has even announced its plans to launch 200 new Nexa showrooms by the end of FY 2017. Currently, Maruti has over 250 Nexa showrooms across India, which retails both the Baleno and the initially launched S-Cross. Also, both the Baleno RS and Ignis will be retailed via Nexa outlets. In fact, the Nexa brand recently completed one year in the Indian car market.
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