Chennai: Riding high on the success of its small car Kwid and SUV Duster range of models, French car maker Renault is well on its way to post its first ever double digit sales numbers this year, according to a top company official.
“First half of the calendar year (January to June) has been very good for us. We have witnessed good growth. Till June, I think we sold about 62,000 units. And in July, we sold about 12,000, I think the total will be 74,000 units. It is a milestone for us…,” Renault India Country CEO and Managing Director Sumit Sawhney told reporters here.
The company, which has a joint manufacturing facility with Japanese-auto maker Nissan at Oragadam near Chennai, attracting investments of over Rs 5,500 crore, has recently commenced third shift operations taking the total number of Kwid range of cars produced to about 9,900 units in July.
“Last year, we sold about 48,000 to 50,000 units. This year, we are looking to double our sales volume (compared to last year),” he said.
Stating that the small car Kwid has a “three month” waiting period for delivery, he said, the company was working in reducing it to “one month” over the next few months.
According to him, there were more than 70,000 units of Kwid on road.
With the launch of Kwid, he said Renault India has 15 per cent market share in that (small car) segment.
To a query, Mr Sawhney said, in August, Renault India would introduce a new variant in Kwid equipped with one litre engine and a special edition of its multi-purpose vehicle – Lodgy.
“The Lodgy, World Edition, will be introduced this month with more of personal features,” he added.
On the exports front, he said the company began shipping of Kwid to Sri Lanka last month and would soon enter Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh markets.
“We have started exports to Sri Lanka. By this month end, we will start exports to Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and South Africa. Early, next year we will be exporting to Brazil,” he said.
On the company’s previous target of 5 per cent market share in domestic auto market by 2017, he said Renault India has 4.4 per cent market share and they were working on achieving it in 2016 itself.
On its distribution network, he said, the company already crossed 215 outlets and by the end of December 2016, it will be taken to 270.
“Majority of our outlets will be in tier-II and III locations,” he said adding that Renault India at the Oragadam factory has total capacity of 4.80 lakh units and the company was operating at 65 per cent of plant capacity.