Hurt by sagging sales of the A-Star, Maruti has introduced a new “Wrapping” accessories package for its small car.
A-Star customers in India can now choose from 16 decal options that Maruti would provide for an additional Rs 11,000, by calling a toll-free number (18100 1800 180). This is a promotional offer launched by the company for both new and existing A-Star customers.
According to Shashank Srivastava, Maruti Suzuki India’s chief general manager, marketing, the designer car wraps look really attractive and lend novelty while making the owners stand out in a crowd. He said that Gen-Y customers are looking out for new and creative things to match their personality type. The best part about a wrap, added Srivastava, is that it makes the car look like an extension of the customer and the special accessory pack will provide discerning customers a “sporty feel” besides giving them an opportunity to customize the car to reflect their attitudes. Related: Maruti Suzuki A-Star Automatic launched
The designs challenge the customer to don the avatar of a rockstar, daredevil, dazzler and nocturnal among others. Although, it’s just a promotional strategy, the move is perhaps a sign of auto-makers giving car owners increased priority, providing them with a host of privileges, which were so far enjoyed only by car owners in developed markets such as Europe and US.
What’s Your Style?
The 16 design decals on offer are named as follows: Adventure – thick green with black stripes theme; Daredevil – black with bright yellow and orange flames theme; Dazzler – black with partying girls theme; Enigma – black-violet-green theme; Evergreen – different shades of green theme; Freedom – black-violet with Golden Eagle wings representing freedom theme; Hip-hopper – dark blue-dark pink with blue stars and tetris cubes theme; Lightning – metallic copper/red with splashy yellow and sporty dotted pattern; Lively – black with long horizontal red and yellow stripes running theme; Nocturnal – black with three yellow stripes theme; Passionate – silver with white and orange flames theme; Rockstar – violet with blue concentric circles and a black/white guitar theme; Sharp – red with black and yellow stripes with multidirectional arrows theme; Sturdy – silver with race track arrows and orange lively theme; Techie – black with white and blue grey circuit diagrams like pattern; Warrior – black with yellowish orange samurai theme.
Maruti A-Star – A Quick Look
Maruti A-Star, a premium A2 segment hatchback car, was introduced in the Indian market on November 18, 2008. Offered in four variants Lxi, Vxi, Vxi automatic and Zxi, the A-Star is available from Rs. 3.5 lakh onwards. In fact, the automatic Vxi A-Star was launched by Maruti in August. Powered by a 1-litre, three-cylinder K10B series engine that churns out 67 PS at 6,000 rpm and 90 Nm of torque at 3,500 rpm, the Maruti A-Star can return a mileage of 19.5 kmpl (as per ARAI) and a top speed of 155 kmph.
Surprisingly, the A-Star is also one of the most eco-friendly small cars in India—more than 85 percent of its materials are recyclable and compliant to European’s ELV norms. Manufactured in over 200 variants and sold in around 150 countries across Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, Asia, Australia and Africa, the bulk of A-Star units are produced for export.
On an average, Maruti sells 3,000 A-Star cars every month. While it remains to be seen whether the decals help draw more customers to the A-Star and increase its sales, we believe Maruti would need to go beyond mere cosmetic changes to make the car more appealing.