At a time when the auto sector is facing a slowdown, MG Motor India has managed to get an overwhelming response for its new SUV, Hector. It was the automaker's first India launch. The company is now increasing its production to meet the demand and has lined up four more launches in next two years. China’s SAIC-owned British brand Morris Garages (MG) stopped taking bookings after the company received 27,000 bookings and is now in the process of ramping up its monthly manufacturing capacity. “Our first product, MG Hector, has received an overwhelming response and we are unable to cater to such high initial demand. We have, therefore, closed bookings temporarily as this will help ensure timely and orderly deliveries to our customers who have shown tremendous confidence in MG," said Rajeev Chaba, president and managing director, MG Motor India.
MG Motor is planning to ramp up production capacity at its Halol unit in Gujarat to 3,000 by September from around 2,000 units in August. The company is also considering to add a second shift, which will give employment to another 500 people.
Chaba added that the company was also working with its component suppliers to ramp up production in a gradual manner without compromising on quality. Till the domestic partners gear up with the capacity, the company plans to import few of the parts.
Localisation is one of the key factors to be cost competitive.
While the current localisation would be around 75 per cent, the company expects to increase with the supplier eco-system ramping up production.
Chaba said key reasons for Hector's success is its technology, features, style, size, safety, good reassurance and pricing.
The company expects to continue with this USP with the upcoming four more launches. Over the next 2-3 years the company is planning to focus only on SUV and MPV segments, including an electric SUV EZS, which will come at the end of this year. Going forward, the company may look at the hatchback segment.
On whether MG will develop India specific platform like other OEMs, who have announced, Chaba said “I doubt anybody today has developed or is developing an India specific platform. They just pick the best possible platform, which they have globally and make changes for India. We will also do the same,” he said.
MG India, according to Chaba, is not in the race of market share, while refusing to disclose any volume targets, he said, the company will focus on building the fundamentals which will help to build the brand. Fundamentals include quality, experience, total cost of ownership, resale value among others.
MG Motor India is planning to increase its touch points to 250 by end of this year from the current 125.