The Ambassador has ruled the Indian Roads till the 80s and has been the car which symbolized India for long. But in the last two decades, other Indian and Foreign car manufacturers moved in at a rapid pace with large number of car variants placed and priced aggressively. Ambassador, though a sturdy car with competitive mileage and new ISUZU engine, has slowly lost the market to its competitors. Hindustan Motors is facing a dipping down monthly sales figure and needs to reposition ambassador at the earliest. We found that ambassador is facing few challenges in form of stigma, less awareness and design based discontent due to which ambassador does not fall into the consideration lot of consumers. In this report we have presented the positioning strategies to cater to specific target customers so that we can revive the product life cycle of ambassador. The car has been always considered for its high functionality value with high torque capability, sturdiness, and safety positioning. Our research provided us with insight on the nostalgic and retro value this brand carries. Based on that we have defined the segments and the target customers for ambassador and how the new positioning can help to boost the sales figure. The new positioning is based on these two USPs and target at two niche segment. We have identified that Ambassador can be an appropriate carrier for the foreign tourists to give an Indian experience worth remembering even during travelling. Other niche market to cater is the safety vehicle segment which is quite unattended in India. Then we have detailed on the media mix required to support this repositioning. The re-launch of ambassador will carry an apt message to fetch the brand equity of ambassador. Back ground
Hindustan Motors Ambassador: It’s the first Indian car to hit the road and is fondly called as “The King of Indian Roads”. The first ambassador was rolled out in the year 1958, and from then onwards this is the only automobile to ply Indian roads for more than 5 decades now. It was complete monopoly for ambassador till the launch for Fiat cars in India by Premier Automobiles Ltd. In duopoly situation as well Hindustan Motors enjoyed the supremacy and remained as the market leader. The situation changed by the establishment of Maruti Udyog Limited in 1981. With government support and latest Japanese technology, they then launched Maruti 800 become a big success among Indian crowd. High customs duty on imports kept the common man away from direct imports of foreign cars. So it was a 3 way battle between Hindustan Motors, Premier Automobile Ltd and Maruti Udyog Ltd for the supremacy on Indian roads. With better Japanese design and technology, Maruti took over Ambassador as the largest selling Indian vehicle. Post liberalisation period, with the entry of other foreign players in the market, the competition became even tougher. While most of the company’s diversified their offering and brought in new models to Indian market, Hindustan Motors was very late to respond which declined their market share drastically.
India is the seventh largest passenger car and commercial vehicle manufacturer in the world. There are close to 100 different types of passenger cars, SUV, MUV’s in India. Most of the world renowned brands are here in India with variety of models to cater to the needs of the second fastest growing economy of the world. Maruti Suzuki is the market leader with close to 50% of total market share by volume, followed by Hyundai, Tata, Honda, Toyota and others. More than 2.1 million vehicles were produced in India in the year 2009 and the trend is showing that the number is on a rise and will be even more by the end of 2010. India has also emerged as one of the favourite automobile export hub for most of the major players in the world. Major players like Hyundai, Tata and many others are exporting vehicles to Europe, Middle East etc which are produced in India....
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