Toyota Kirloskar Motors Limited (TKML) has just announced that it is pushing back the launch of the Etios Liva hatchback from April to June, in a move to bring down the waiting period of the Etios sedan.
In a statement, released to the press, TKML Deputy Managing Director, Mr Sandeep Singh said, and we quote, — “We thank our customers for the response we have received for the Etios and also for the patience shown through the waiting period. We would also like to sincerely apologize, to people eagerly awaiting the hatchback – Etios Liva, for the postponement of the launch. We will do everything we can to limit inconvenience caused to our customers.”
The company said that the move was being done to bring down the waiting period of the Etios sedan which stretches to anywhere between six to eight months, depending on market and model. Originally, the plan was to begin production of the Liva hatch by Feb-March and utilise a second shift to do that. Now, it seems that the company will utilise the second shift to produce more Etios and bring down the waiting period to ease customer retention.
In the last few weeks, several customers who had booked the car have withdrawn their booking amounts after the waiting period stretched to a period of six to eight months. Some dealerships have registered as high as 50 per cent cancellations and Toyota Kirloskar is keen to rectify it. The Etios range are being produced from a new 70,000 unit P.A. capacity plant next to the old plant.
The Etios sedan is currently available with a 1.5-litre petrol engine, but will be offered in the second-half of 2011 with a 1.4-litre diesel motor option as well. The Liva hatchback will be powered by a 1.2-litre petrol motor and the 1.4-litre diesel option from the Etios. It may also be offered with the 1.5-litre petrol motor as a hot hatch option.