Wednesday June 12, 2024

‘SUV sales in the fast lane, set to tap lion’s share in auto market’

By Bilal Hussain
March 08, 2022

KARACHI: SUV segment increased four times in three years, from 5 percent to 20 percent, and the high-price tag segment might capture the biggest pie of the auto market – at 37 percent approximately by 2030, industry officials said on Monday.

“The auto industry in Pakistan is going through an SUV transformation,” said Shabiruddin, director sales and marketing Master Changan Motors. He was speaking at the launch ceremony of Changan SUV Oshan 7.

According to data and estimations shared by the company, sedan segment currently leads the market with 35 percent share, followed by hatchbacks with 29 percent.

The two segments are expected to shrink by 30 percent and 21 percent by 2030, while SUVs’ share is expected to go from the current 20 percent to 37 percent by 2030.

Master Changan would be the only company to manufacture right-hand-drive (RHD) cars in Pakistan. The company says it will also be exporting these cars in RDH countries.

The company has launched the two variants - Oshan X7 FutureSenseTM (5 Seat) and Oshan X7 Comfort (7 Seat), which are priced at Rs5.95 million and Rs5.75 million respectively. The car has a 1.5L turbo engine.

It has started taking bookings from Monday and deliveries are expected to start from April.

Shabbiruddin said the country had potential in the auto sector as motorisation rate was only 17 per 1000 people in the country, smaller than India and Kenya. The global average is 172, he added.

Talking on the occasion, Danial Malik, CEO of Changan Motors, said their sedan car Alvin, which was launched in Dec 2020, currently accounts for 25 percent sales in the sedan segment.

Malik said they didn’t have any plans to launch a hatchback and they see their sedan Alsvin as a competition to hatchbacks on price point. He said electric vehicles would gain momentum in next five to six years, and Changan would launch an electric vehicle, which would see use of fossil fuel going down.

To a query about hybrid cars and if they see a competition, Malik said the future is electric cars and they would be focusing on bringing electric cars at the appropriate time. “At the moment, technology lifecycle is such that gasoline cars are cheaper and electric cars are expensive.” he said.

“In the next five to six years, there will be charging infrastructure too. Then there would be demand and then bringing electric vehicles would make a business case.” Malik was of the view that only rich people afford electric cars as their second or third car, however, they would penetrate as they become cheaper, he envisaged.