Eicher Polaris Pvt. Ltd., a 50:50 joint venture between Eicher Motors Ltd and Polaris Industries Inc., launched the Multix India’s first personal utility vehicle. The Multix, available in two versions and four colors, is targeting the “independent businessman”. The Multix is being positioned as a versatile vehicle that can be used for both business and family purposes. Management estimates the market size to be 60 million households. From initial idea to launch took Eicher and Polaris about five years and $60 million. Extensive consumer testing was performed to identify the market and test the concept. The Multix is being viewed as launching a new vehicle category. Initial production is expected to be 5,000 vehicles per month and the manufacturing facilities can expand to handle twice that volume.
Key features of the Multix include:
- 500cc Diesel engine
- Cabin space that can comfortably seat a family of five along with luggage
- Multix can be adapted to create large storage space of 1918 liters.
- X-PORT a unique power-take-off point, which can generate power of up to 3 KW that can be used for lighting homes and powering professional equipment
- Pro Ride Independent suspension system
- Ground clearance of 225mm,
- Mileage of 28.45 kmpl.
- Tubular frame structure and Roll-Over Protection System (ROPS)
- Flexituff body
The two Multix versions are priced at 3,620 USD or 2.32 Lakh and 4,245 USD or 2.72 Lakh. The vehicle will be launched in 30 cities with test drives starting in July and deliveries in August. Learn more: Equitybulls.com
Comment: In contrast to the US market where a crossover utility vehicle means a vehicle for work and play, in the Indian market it means work and family use. This utility vehicle/mini-truck market is very dynamic. Not only do you have new entrants like Eicher-Polaris with the Multix, but there are also a number of startups receiving venture capital that are targeting the independent delivery/shipping market that utilize these vehicles. These companies are using software and other technology to make the process of locating and quickly accessing a shipper much more efficient. This could prove to be another catalyst for the vehicle market.