The penetration of cars per person in India is not really high. This might not sound like good news to some but for the carmakers this translates into a huge potential market. With a rise in disposable income, it becomes all the more lucrative. This is the reason why so many carmakers are launching their products in India some of which are very specific to the Indian customer's demands. However, these new models are still a long way from dethroning some of the cars that have been in the market for over 10 years. A report published in a daily has listed out a few cars that are still top of their segment after years.
Maruti Suzuki 800 - even after being phased out of the 13 cities with BS IV compliant norms, the first common man's car of the country refuses to fade away. The car produces approximately 37 bhp (28 kW) power and delivers a fuel economy better than 20 km/l on clear and plain roads. Maruti 800 had a 4 valve per cylinder engine producing 45 bhp coupled with a 5-speed manual transmission but it was later discontinued. The Maruti 800 is priced between Rs 1,88,988 - Rs 2,23,498 (ex-showroom, New Delhi).
Maruti Suzuki Alto - this is the famous sibling of the M800 and has been as successful. There are speculations of an upgrade to 1000cc K-series engine. Alto has a 796cc, 3-cylinder, 4 valves per cylinder MPFI, FC engine with 32 Bit ECM. The engine is capable of generating 47 PS power at 6200rpm and 62 NM torque at 3000rpm. The car comes with a price tag of Rs 2,28,814 - Rs 2,77,696 (ex-showroom, New Delhi).
Hyundai Santro - Even though the Hyundai i10 has been a runaway success there are still takers for this tried and tested hatchback model. It has a 1086 cc engine and the car is loved for its performance. Santro also comes with a distributor less ignition system (DIS) that provides good fuel efficiency, less emissions and more power. The car comes for Rs 2,71,322 - Rs 3,79,882 (ex-showroom, New Delhi).
Tata Indica - When at first the car launched it was not accepted too well. But the launch of Indica V2 did the trick for the car. Even though it is many a times perceived more as a taxi car but it still manages to sell despite all odds The base variant of the car starts at Rs 3,25,684 (ex showroom, New Delhi).
Ford Ikon - Earlier the Ford Ikon was available only with the 1.3 Rocam petrol variant but now Ford Ikon 1.4 Duratorq TDCi diesel has come out and is being well received. It has a top speed of 156 kmh and on highways it gives a mileage of 12 kmpl and on city roads that of 9 kmpl. The car comes with a price tag of Rs 4,97,000 - Rs 5,76,000 (ex-showroom, New Delhi).
In the end it comes down to Indian buyer's loyalty that moves him towards an established brand. Car models that sell despite age.