India just can’t get enough of the Kia Seltos. It’s been over eight months since the launch, and the demand is still much higher than anticipated. Thousands of customers are still in the queue to get their Kia Seltos delivered, and the waiting period could get longer soon after the demand boosts once the national lockdown is lifted.
Kia delivered some 32,000 units of the Seltos in the first quarter of the year (January-March 2020). The Kia Seltos leads the 4 metre+ sub-compact SUV segment in India, with a market share of 67.7%. The Hyundai Creta takes 26.6% of the pie. Only 5.7% of the sales are of models that are not from Hyundai Motor Group.
At the end Q1 2020, Kia had about 20,000 pending orders for the Seltos in India. As the market has been closed because of the national lockdown this whole month, the backlog continues to exist even today. The demand is expected to grow sharply once the national lockdown is lifted next month, with more customers switching to private transport.
Owing to the Coronavirus outbreak, people are becoming more health-conscious and a change in the coming months could be a higher preference for private transport. Moreover, models like the Kia Seltos and the Hyundai Creta that offer an in-built air purifier and possibly other health benefits could have a competitive edge.
Kia manufactures the Seltos and assembles the Carnival from imported knocked-down kits in India at the Anantapur plant in the state of Andhra Pradesh. In Q1 2020, 49,000 vehicles were shipped from the Anantapur plant in total, of which 32,000 units were of Seltos and 2,000 units were of the Carnival. This means that approximately 15,000 units of the Seltos were exported from India during the same period.