Maruti Suzuki, the country’s largest 4-wheeler manufacturer has also established itself as the most trust worthy automobile brand in the country. However, it has earned that trust at a cost. It has come at the cost of being a brand which is everybody’s brand but is not a premium one. Although Maruti doesn’t have too much to complain about, it still wants to improve upon its image as a brand that not only launches cost effective vehicles but one that also sells premium automobiles. .
To do this, Maruti Suzuki intends to set up ‘brand centres’ across premium locations in India in order to showcase the technology it has in its armory. Both upcoming and current products are expected to be showcased at these brand centers. As of now, Maruti Suzuki plans to set up 16 ‘brand centres’ across the country, in cities that bring in about half of its sales in the country. The automaker has already set up one in New Delhi. Brand Centres in Kochi, Kolkata, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Chennai, Indore and Bangalore will be set up in the first phase with other cities to follow in the next phase.
Maruti Suzuki’s Brand Centers will be setup in the poshest locations in targeted cities, which would also be situated near the regional head offices of the automobile manufacturer. The company is believed to be setting aside about Rs 50-60 crores for buying land and will invest about Rs 1,000 crores in the entire activity.
The boutiques would be used purely for brand interactions and not vehicle sales. “Based on the successful concept of the brand centre situated at our head office in upmarket Vasant Kunj in south Delhi, these 16 centres would purely engage customers to our new products and modern technologies that the company plans to debut in India” is what a senior Maruti Suzuki official noted.
Currently, Maruti has about 6 posh showrooms at strategic locations, which has aided it to penetrate high end urban markets. However, the car maker is still perceived as a purveyor of budget cars. The upcoming Ciaz sedan and SX-4 Cross crossover will be positioned in premium segments. Marketing campaigns for these cars will also be tailor made with premium car buyers in mind.