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Tuesday, Aug 13, 2002

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M&M takes a new route in Scorpio marketing

Our Bureau

HYDERABAD, Aug.12

MAHINDRA & Mahindra, which launched its indigenously-developed Scorpio range of sports utility vehicles (SUV) in July this year, has so far marketed about 800 vehicles and enlisted about 2,000 bookings.

It expects to launch its Renault engine-powered petrol version before the month-end.

Launching the Scorpio range in the Andhra Pradesh market, the Vice-President, Sales, M&M, Mr Gautam Nagwekar, said that ``the company has adopted a new strategy in marketing its Scorpio range. From a transaction-based selling drive, we are drifting towards a relationship-based marketing. This will see the launch of an exclusive club for Scorpio owners."

Mr Nagwekar said that the company was charting out a strategy to tap the overseas market with the Scorpio range. This will be country-specific and targeted at the sports utility segment with attractive price points. "Before we embark on this move, all mandatory tests will be complied with," he said while referring to the crash test.

The country-wide dealership network is being revamped and upgraded. The first phase roll-out will see the coverage of about 45 dealers, the second phase 30, and the rest, in the third phase.

The petrol version, to be rolled out later this month, is expected to be priced at Rs 7.1 lakh ex-Mumbai.

The model is targeted at the discerning users and will constitute a smaller component of the overall Scorpio market. In addition, a naturally-aspirated engine version of Mahindra Scorpio is planned for launch in the next few months.

"Further, we expect to roll out the four-wheel drive version of the Scorpio later this year," he said.

Mr Nagwekar said: "We at M&M have been truly humbled by the customer response for the Scorpio. We are certain that the Scorpio will deliver on all counts of customer expectations, especially since a lot of hard work and customer-centric R&D have gone into making the Scorpio, all of which are now rewarded."

The company has invested Rs 550 crore in the project, which includes Rs 300 crore for developing the facility and Rs 250 crore in the development of Scorpio. The segment in which Scorpio is offered has a market of about 4,000 vehicles a month. "We expect to garner a big chunk of this," he said.

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