Between BSVI norm adherent models and the onslaught of the electric army headed our way, the balance will be sustained by those who have seen a fairly long run and are now ready to retire from the market line up.
Come 2020 and the Indian market will be saying its last goodbye to some of its most beloved and popular passenger cars .
Shared below is a list of the first batch of road cars to have their plugs pulled forever.
With the Maruti 800 being discontinued in 2014, the Omni has been long due for discontinuation as its design and development had no further direction to go into after the BSVI norms coming into play. The company plans to focus on the Eeco instead and has a few new upgrades planned to meet BSVI requirements and the demand of a new fresh look from their multi-seater passenger/cargo segment.
The icon for Indian off roading, the pioneer that’s raided every mountain range, the official military transport vehicle in the passenger segment – the Maruti Gypsy will be among those saying goodbye to production and sales forever next year. Its the only Maruti vehicle to have gone the longest without any major design upgrade or facelift in its entire period of sale. The Gypsy is expected to be replaced by the Maruti Jimny.
Mahindra Xylo, Nuvosport/Quanto Verito and Verito Vibe
Next in line is Mahindra’s popular MPV that managed to build quite a respectable following simply because of the excellent interior comfort it offered as opposed to its quite below average exterior. Lack of adequate upgrades and customer engagement, and due to the limited period attention span of the average automotive customer, the Xylo sank after a successful few years of sales.
Along with the Xylo, its shorter wheelbase offspring – the Quanto also faced discontinuation due to similar reasons. Even with a facelifted front and its name being changed to Nuvosport, the Quanto failed to keep the interest alive amongst its previous following as well.
Following suit are the Verito and Vibe siblings which were honestly just poorly styled. The engine and transmission were the only upsides along with seating comfort. The interior elements too were lacking in a visual appeal and the dashboard looked bland.
The Volkswagen Ameo was designed to compete in the micro sedan segment led by the Maruti Dzire, the Hyundai Xcent, the Tata Indigo eCS and Tigor, the Ford Aspire and others. What it ended up doing was jeopardizing the sales numbers of its siblings – the Polo and the Vento. Barely able to cover production costs, the Ameo – though a pretty well designed car overall – faces discontinuation as the sales figures give it the official thumbs down.
Tata Safari Storme
Another decade spanning contender of the Indian SUV segment that will be saying goodbye is the Tata Safari Storme. The third facelift of the iconic Safari, the Storme was mainly bought by those smitten with the Safari love, and had hardly any new admirers due to the numerous contenders that had made their place in the market in the last decade. Another important reason is the fact that the company isn’t going to put in more dough to make the already average selling storm BS VI compliant. The new SUV line up of Tata motors with the likes of the Harrier, Hexa and Nexon have already sailed on that ship. Following suit and possibly preceding the shutdown of the Safari line will be the Tata Sumo Gold which is definitely way out of time.
Tata Zest and Bolt
Completely overshadowed by their design and technology upgraded versions, the Tigor and Tiago, the Tata Zest and Bolt are both on the path of discontinuation. The Hatch-sedan duo of small passenger vehicles has been beaten both in technology and sales by their upgraded alter egos and face a definitive shut down of their assembly line by March next year.
Honda will also most likely, end production of their 7 seater MPV – the BR-V because of the disappointing sales numbers in the 2018-19 fiscal year and 2019 hasn’t looked very good either. The company will most probably pull the plug on this otherwise fairly placed car before the launch of their 2020 campaign in March next year.
Fiat Punto, Avventura and Linea
The entire Fiat lineup including the Punto, the Avventura and the Linea will be packing their bags as the future of the FCA group is entirely dependent on their Jeep brand. They will however need to play it pretty close to the chest as even Jeep Compass sales haven’t been top notch lately.
Toyota Etios Liva and Cross variants
Toyota will pulling the plug on its popular hatch the Etios Liva and its crossover variant – the Etios Cross. The Liva has had quite a run and with sales of both models plummeting in addition to the BS VI mandate, the company is very unlikely to push the two any further. The cross badging experiment with the Glanza isn’t faring very well either and that might be benched in the later part of 2020 as well.
Though quite well designed, the Lodgy didn’t quite strike a chord with the Indian customer and with sales down to double digits, its only fitting that the company end any further drain of capital into a model struggling to be noticed.