When it comes to buying a new automobile, people of Pakistan have to pay a lot of money to get under-spec, feature-ripped vehicles.
In most cases, these ‘new’ automobiles available for sale in our country have either become obsolete from the rest of the world, misses out safety equipment or lacks basic equipment that are common in the same car available in other markets.
One of the key reasons for this is the lack of competition as people are forced to buy whatever that is offered. The scenario becomes worse when you compare a Suzuki available in Pakistan with a Suzuki that is sold in the rest of the world. Sadly markets even smaller than ours, have a better & feature-packed Suzuki on offer, compared to the obsolete and under-spec vehicles sold here.
The Ciaz sedan launched by Suzuki earlier this year misses out a dozen features found in Sri Lankan, Nepali and even the Jaimaican versions. The fully loaded Cultus VXL (Celerio) misses out features found in the fully loaded international trims. And so does the Wagon R.
Wagon R was launched in 2014 as a replacement for 1000cc Alto in Pakistan. The unusual looking Wagon R saw a hard time picking up sales but now considerably improved after already been in the market for more than 3 years. Provided there is no competition in its class, people are forced to buy one if they wish to purchase a car from this segment. It should be noted that the Wagon R was able to surpass the average sales of Alto only recently in FY2016-17, while the cumulative sales figures of the first three years were less than that of FY2016-17.
The fully loaded Wagon R VXL in Pakistan cost PKR 10.94 lac however the car misses out plenty of features found in international variants. Across the border, the Wagon R is considered as the most successful Suzuki hatchback. In September 2017, it surpassed 2.0 million sales mark in India making it one of the most successful cars there. The Wagon R in India is priced between INR 4.2 lac to Rs 5.4 lac which converts into PKR 6.73 lac and PKR 8.65 lac respectively.
The fully loaded Wagon R VXi+ that cost INR 5.44 lac boasts features such as Driver & Passenger Airbags, Seatbelt Warning, ABS, Keyless Entry, Engine Immobilizer, Speed Sensing Door Locks, Power Steering, Power Windows (all four), Power Outside Mirrors, Rear Windshield Wiper, In-dash Music System 2 Din 4 Speakers, USB/ AUX compatibility and 5-speed Auto Gear Shift AMT transmission.
There is also a limited edition “WagonR Felicity” which is priced between INR 4.40 lac to INR 5.37 lac and comes equipped with a host of features such as reverse parking sensors with display and voice guidance, body graphics and rear spoiler, Polyurethane (PU) seat upholstery and double-din audio system with Bluetooth connectivity.
In Pakistan, the fully loaded Wagon R VXL despite being PKR 10.94 lac in price misses out airbags, ABS, automatic transmission, all 4 power windows, rear windshield wiper, power outside mirrors and alloy wheels etc.
Pak Suzuki which faces zero competition in the market should focus on providing basic safety features and work on to offer specs that are available in international markets before the true competition arrives.