Over the last 6 years since its inception in 2015, “NEXA”, the speciality retail format of Maruti Suzuki sold a whopping 14 lakh vehicles across models starting with the S-Cross in 2015, followed by the Baleno in 2016, the Ignis and the Ciaz in 2017 and the XL6 in 2019. Every vehicle sold at Nexa is curated with the best of technology, design and features for customer’s delight, according to the Company.
The company has over 3,600 retail sales centres across India including 3,900+ Service Centres, across 1,934 cities in India, all the way up to Spiti Valley in Jammu-Kashmir. However, the Nexa showrooms showcase and sell only these 5 models exclusively across the 380+ showrooms in 234 cities in the country. All other models from Maruti Suzuki, other than these are available at the regular Dealerships of the company. The Nexa showrooms offer superior product experience along with a world-class service offering from the well trained staff of the company.
Speaking on the occasion celebrating this milestone, Mr. Shashank Srivastava, Senior Executive Director, Marketing and Sales, Maruti Suzuki India Limited, said in a statement, “Driven by innovation, NEXA marks the first initiative by an automobile company to go beyond selling cars and create new formats of car buying experiences. It is our constant endeavour to keep reinventing to deliver the NEXA experience to ever-evolving customers in the field of automobile and lifestyle. With over 380 showrooms across country, NEXA has helped us attract a new set of customers who were earlier not considering a Maruti Suzuki vehicle. The milestone of 6 years and 1.4million customers is a testimony of the trust that our customers have shown us, over the years.”
It may be noted that Hyundai has launched its “Signature” retail centres recently with a similar offering (which we covered here, differentiating the models, catering to the the 35-year old customers, many who are first timers and expect a discerning automobile shopping experience. Mahindra Group has also taken a similar path a few years ago where its base models such as the That and TUV300 are featured in smaller outlets while the flagship models such as the XUV500 and Scorpio are housed in larger format stores. This strategy of differentiating customers seem to be paying off, one reason why the premium offering from Tata-FIAT JV such as the Linea had fewer takers due to poor customer experience at the stores.
With the pandemic continuing to create havoc for the automobile retail industry, slowing sales and a sagging customer sentiment, many Dealers of 2W, 3W, 4W as well as commercial vehicles have started giving up their dealerships, instead opting for a multi-brand model, which the Automobile Companies are fighting fiercely. However, the huge inventory costs and the associated business operating costs have put the industry in a back foot. Citroen India launched online car purchase recently to reduce dependence on dealerships and managing the entire customer experience which we covered here. Interesting times ahead for auto-retailing.