400 Ertiga bookings in Maha on Day 1, will Maruti make big money?

The much-awaited Maruti Suzuki's first multi-purpose vehicle Ertiga has reportedly garnered over 400 bookings on the first day of its launch in Maharashtra.

The new mini-MPV from Maruti Suzuki was introduced in India at a starting price of Rs 5.89 lakh on 12 April 2012, much lower than the Toyota Innova's base price of Rs 8.7 lakh and Mahindra Xylo's base price of Rs 7.44 lakh.

"Even before the launch of the Ertiga here, we have had 400 bookings from Maharashtra," Maruti Suzuki commercial business head for western region, S N Burman, told reporters in Mumbai on Friday.

The Ertiga has 1.4 litre petrol engine and comes at an introductory price of Rs 5.89. AFP

Ertiga has a distinct UV outline with flexi-seating to accommodate 7 people, but offers car-like ride and handling capabilities, claims Maruti Suzuki. The vehicle carries forward sporty design philosophy of the popular Swift platform.

The Ertiga has 1.4 litre petrol engine and comes at an introductory price of Rs 5.89 lakh ex-showroom Delhi for its base petrol variant, while the top-end petrol variant will cost Rs 7.30 lakh. The 1.3 litre diesel powered variants of Ertiga will cost Rs 7.30-8.45 lakh.

"Ertiga is a major step forward for Maruti Suzuki. Many urban families in India are now looking for a vehicle that offers more space and flexibility than a sedan, without being bulky, bland and expensive like a utility vehicle. The Ertiga is designed for these customers," said Shinzo Nakanishi, MD.

Analysts say the attractive price could make the Ertiga a game changer for Maruti Suzuki.

Ertiga will be manufactured at Maruti Suzuki's Gurgaon plant and it plans to sell around 5,000 units every month. The company has invested around Rs 400 crore to develop the Ertiga, which the company said is a critical vehicle not only for it but also for its parent Suzuki Motor Corp.

Maruti has also a started exporting completely knocked-down kits of the Ertiga to Indonesia and will look to export the car to a few other South-East Asian countries too.