2018 has not been a bad year for the Indian customer as most manufacturers have managed to sustain their sales momentum and come up with new models that are safer, more frugal, and more feature-laden. That said, there have been some cars that have been/will be taken off the shelves due to the lack of demand and their inability to comply with emission and crash safety regulations that come into play in 2019. Here is a look at 10 well-known cars that won't be available in the next financial year -
The Hyundai Eon has an average monthly sales of 3,123 units*, which makes it one of the slower selling models in the entry-level segment. Reportedly, the small car will be discontinued in the coming months, which isn't a surprise if you consider that the hatchback is not compliant with the future safety and emission regulations. It is said that the carmaker has even informed some of its vendors about its plans to discontinue the Eon by the year-end.
The previous generation Rexton marked the debut of the Ssangyong brand in India and became the most expensive model to be sold through the Mahindra & Mahindra dealerships. Sadly, however, the SUV failed to garner a positive response and sales remained dismal throughout the car's existence. Finally, the company had to offer huge discounts, in tune of INR 9.5 lakh, to clear the inventory before introducing the G4 Ssangyong Rexton as the Mahindra Alturas G4 in November 2018.
Launched on 30 December 1998, the Tata Indica became the country's first indigenously designed and manufactured car. Introduced at a sub-INR 3 lakh price tag and with a naturally aspirated 1.4-litre diesel engine, the Indica was the result of Tata's vision to come up with a diesel hatchback that could rival the Maruti 800 on the price front and offer cabin space equivalent to the HM Ambassador. While the Tata Indica did sell pretty well in both private and commercial markets, it couldn't survive the heat from more modern models. Eventually, it was pulled off the shelves in May this year.
The Tata Indigo, which was the three-box derivative of the Indica, was launched in 2002 and became a direct rival to the Maruti Esteem. The Indigo spawned many body variants, including a stretched version aptly called the 'Indigo XL', a station wagon that was named the 'Indigo Marina', and a sub-4-metre sedan version that was known as the Indigo CS. In fact, the latter, which was renamed to Indigo eCS at a later stage, was the country's first-ever compact sedan, a segment that was later popularised by the second-gen Maruti Dzire and the first-gen Honda Amaze. Even the Indigo series was entirely discontinued by May this year.
The last generation Logan was the first product of a joint venture between Renault India and Mahindra and Mahindra. In 2010, after the dissolution of the JV, M&M retained the rights to manufacture and sell the Logan as the Mahindra Verito, with small changes to the front-end styling. In July 2012, a comprehensively facelifted version was introduced but sales have remained quite disappointing, with an average monthly sale of 122 units*. The Verito will be taken off the shelves in the coming months.
In June 2013, Mahindra & Mahindra introduced the Verito Vibe, a 5-door version of the Logan-based sedan. Being a sub-4-metre offering, the Vibe benefits from excise duty concession, which, in turn, translates into slightly aggressive pricing. Sadly, however, the hatchback has failed to find many takers, much of which is owing to its oddball proportions and a dated interior. Like the Verito, the Vibe is on its way out and won't survive beyond a few months.
While some may argue that this model is more infamous than famous, launched in April 2016, the Mahindra NuvoSport is a significantly updated version of the erstwhile Quanto. Records show that the company has dispatched just 1 unit of the sub-4-metre offering to its dealerships in last six months, thereby hinting that the lack of demand has already resulted into a demise of this ladder-frame vehicle.
The company will launch the Mahindra XUV300, a monocoque-based sub-4-metre offering, in the first half of February 2019, which should help the manufacturer finally offer some real competition to the Maruti Vitara Brezza.
Currently the least priced Honda car in India, the Brio was launched in September 2011. It garnered more than 5,000 bookings within a few weeks of its launch but was unable to sustain the buzz. Currently, it has an average monthly sale of 105 units*, which makes it one of the least popular cars on sale in the country. The Brio has reportedly already been pulled off the production line.
The sixth-gen Volkswagen Jetta was taken off the shelves by VW India in February this year. While a well-sorted D1-segmenter that was a worthy alternative to the likes of the Hyundai Elantra and the Skoda Octavia, the Jetta was discontinued owing to the fast dwindling demand for premium sedans. In fact, the company has ruled out the seventh-gen Jetta for India as an RHD will not be made.
Another VW that was discontinued earlier this year is the iconic Beetle. The reason behind pulling the plug on the cutesy retro-styled hatchback was the low demand.
*between June 2018 - November 2018