Honda returns to mid-SUV segment
Honda Cars India, the local unit of the Japanese automaker, on Monday launched its mid-sized sport utility vehicle (SUV) Elevate, marking its return to the popular SUV sub-segment in the country.
The starting ex-showroom price for this model is ₹11 lakh, and the top-end variant is priced at ₹16 lakh.
The SUV, which will compete with South Korean rivals like the Hyundai Creta and Kia's Seltos, along with recent Japanese entrants like Suzuki's Grand Vitara and Toyota's Hyryder, is priced at a slight premium to its competition at the entry level, but offers a substantial cost advantage in the automatic CVT transmission and top-end variants.
Hyundai's Creta, which leads the segment, is priced starting at ₹10.87 lakh at the entry level and goes up all the way to ₹19.20 lakh at the top end. The Maruti Suzuki Grand Vitara, on the other hand, is priced from ₹10.7 lakh to nearly ₹20 lakh at the top end for its strong hybrid variant.
“The mid-sized SUV segment is the most crowded passenger vehicle segment. The size of the segment is about 70,000 units a month, but the volume is spread over 20 different models. So we had to package the Elevate very well, especially since we were introducing an SUV after a long time—the pricing of the product, along with ensuring we are providing safety features, checking off the exterior and expectations customers have in terms of looks, features and drivability. We are trying to ensure that customers should not feel that it is not an accessible car in any way," said Kunal Behl, vice-president of marketing and sales at Honda Cars India. “Our feedback said customers feel Honda cars are very good to drive, but they are very expensive, so we took that feedback on board when we introduced this pricing."
“We opened bookings for the Elevate from 1 July and have orders worth five months of production for certain grades even when the price wasn't shared with customers. In the last week of August, we started dispatching the car to dealers. Today, as we launch, I'm sure we will get a good response," Behl said, adding, “55% of the bookings we have received are for our top-grade models, and 65% of the bookings are for the CVT automatic. We are the only OEM (original equipment manufacturer) to offer CVT at the starting grades, so customers get a lot of options to choose from. What we believe is we need to ramp up production. From 540 cars a day till March, we have increased production to 660 cars a day, including 25% exports."
Since discontinuing models like the CR-V and BR-V, Honda has been present only in the sedan segment in India—which represents only 10% of the total passenger vehicle volumes in the country. The market for SUVs more than 4m in length grew 34% in the April-August period in 2023 compared to last year, which makes it a key segment for OEMs wanting to build scale in India to participate in.
Honda Cars India is targeting a growth of 35% in the second half of this year.
Source: Live Mint
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This Nokia Phone Has Just Got A Rs 12
The Nokia X30 smartphone that launched in India earlier this year has got a massive price cut in the market this week. The Nokia phone is manufactured by HMD Global and is one of the few phones in the segment to come with durability via the IP67 rating. The device features an AMOLED display, powered by a Snapdragon 5G chipset and the battery supports charging speed.
Nokia X30 price in India has been cut by Rs 12,000 thanks to a discount offered by the company on its online store in India. The product listing shows Rs 36,999 as the MRP against its launch price of Rs 49,999. The device is showing out of stock, so we're not sure if people would be able to get it for the new price. We always felt the Nokia X30 was priced much higher than it should have launched and with this change, the value of the phone is more acceptable.
Nokia X30 5G comes with a 6.43-inch AMOLED display that gives you a Full HD+ resolution along with 90Hz refresh rate. The screen gets Corning Gorilla Glass Victus protection. The device is powered by a Snapdragon 695 chipset with up to 8GB RAM and 256GB storage.
The phone comes with dual cameras at the back with a 50MP primary sensor (OIS) and a 13MP ultra-wide-angle sensor. The front of the phone carries a 16MP shooter for video calls and selfies. It has features including Night Mode 2.0, with Dark Vision, Tripod Mode and Night Selfie.
The phone comes with IP67 dust protection and water immersion of up to 1m for 30 minutes. It packs a 4200mAh battery with support for 33W charging speed. The company is offering Android 12 out of the box with the phone and promises to give three OS updates and security updates for the device.
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Team India nahi Bharat
India announced its ODI World Cup 2023 squad amid reports of the government considering changing the country's name from India to ‘Bharat,’ cricket veteran Virender Sehwag said that now our players are Team Bharat, not Team India. Virender Sehwag even tagged BCCI Secretary Jay Shah and said that our player wears a jersey which has “Bharat".
“Team India nahin #TeamBharat. This World Cup as we cheer for Kohli , Rohit , Bumrah, Jaddu , may we have Bharat in our hearts and the players wear jersey which has “Bharat" @JayShah," Virender Sehwag said on X (formerly Twitter).
Source: Live Mint
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Kiara Advani Stuns In Black
Sunny Deol hosted a grand Gadar 2 party and Kiara Advani and Sidharth Malhotra were among those invited. The starry couple, who tied the knot earlier this year, were seen making their way to the party hand-in-hand. Kiara and Sid oozed power couple energy as they made their way to the red carpet. Kiara was seen wearing a gorgeous black outfit for the night. The dress featured a thigh-high slit and a plunging neckline that raised temperatures.
Sidharth twinned with Kiara in a black shirt and pant look. The couple posed for the paparazzi before they made their way to the party. In another video surfaced online, Kiara and Sid were seen catching up with director Kabir Khan. A clip of their interaction was shared on Reddit. Watch the videos below:
Gadar 2 has successfully replicated that success in 2023. Trade expert Taran Adarsh revealed on Saturday (September 2), “#Gadar2 is an UNSTOPPABLE FORCE, inches closer to ₹ 500 cr… Await the JUMP on [fourth] Sat and Sun… [Week 4] Fri 5.20 cr. Total: ₹ 487.65 cr. #India biz. #Boxoffice." The film is expected to enter Rs 500 crore soon.
The Sunny Deol film is set against the backdrop of the 1971 Indo-Pak war. In the sequel, Tara Singh (Sunny Deol) and Sakeena (Ameesha Patel) are in a happy marriage, and their son Charan Jeet Singh (played by Utkarsh Sharma, who also essayed the child's role in 2001's Gadar) is all grown up now. Their lives are all hunky-dory but a turn of events lands Charan Jeet in Pakistan. Tara Singh then returns to Pakistan to save his son.
Meanwhile, Kiara and Sidharth have also been busy with their upcoming projects. It is rumoured that Kiara might have bagged a role in Don 3. On the other hand, Sidharth will be seen in Yodha, set to release later this year.
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Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani's Date Ideas That Ignite Every Romantic
Planning an enchanting and memorable romantic date can be a bit of a puzzle sometimes. The charismatic couple Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani, definitely know how to keep it real and have a knack for turning heads with their romantic escapades.
Here are five sure shot cues from Sidharth Malhotra's stable to help you curate a magical experience for you and your partner. Check them out-
Cinematic Delight: A Movie Date
Embrace the essence of the Shershaah couple by whisking your partner away to a movie night. Picture this: you, your loved one, a tub of popcorn, and the nearest cinema – a perfect recipe for an intimate date that guarantees cosiness, minus all the paparazzi, of course.
Culinary Affection: A Dinner Date
Arguably one of the most basic plans, but picking a nice restaurant shows a lot of care and effort. Channel your inner Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani by selecting a restaurant that resonates with your partner's preferences. Showcasing thoughtfulness and care, this timeless idea lets you express your affection through a carefully chosen meal, just as Sidharth did on a recent dinner outing with Kiara.
Exploring Galleries & Museums
If planning a perfect date is an art, then this Jodi no: 1 are the artists…. Recently the jodi was spotted in the museum for an art date. You too can book a visit to an art gallery or museum. A day looking at all the exhibits could be a great bonding experience.
Take a Vacation together
JET SET GO. Couples can look at booking a vacation together. Stepping away from the routine and indulging in quality time together creates an unparalleled experience, leaving you with cherished memories, just ask the doting husband and a Majnu on a mission, Sidharth Malhotra.
Go on an adventure together
There is no better bonding experience than going on an adventure together. No adventure is too small, the goal is to spend quality time together. Just ask Sidharth and Kiara, who went on a lovely adventure for her birthday.
Whether you're as suave as Sidharth or as charming as Kiara, these ideas guarantee a romantic, yet fun experience that both you and your partner will enjoy.
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BJP Slams Mamata Banerjee's 'Brazenly Communal' Stipend to Imams
A new controversy seems to be rearing its head in West Bengal after chief minister Mamata Banerjee announced increase in the stipend of Imams and Brahmin priests, with BJP attacking the Trinamool Congress for the pay disparity between the two even as experts explained the logic behind the move.
At the All India Imam Muezzin meeting, Banerjee declared that the stipend of Imams, Muezzins and Brahmin priests would be increased by Rs 500 in the state. While Imams will get Rs 3,000, Muezzins will get Rs 1,500 and Brahmin priests will also get the same amount.
The BJP used the opportunity to train guns on Banerjee, with Amit Malviya calling the TMC supremo “brazenly communal and divisive”.
It was in 2012 that Banerjee first declared stipend for Imams and Muezzins. This had irked the Opposition which accused her of appeasing minorities. Soon, the Purohit association placed its demand for stipend and around 2020, the state government started giving priests a stipend of Rs 1,000.
As the row blows up, News18 spoke to several people in the administration and ruling party to know the logic behind the disparity.
First, the money given to Imams is via the Waqf Board, with the funds of the body and state government together forming the stipend of Imams — a higher amount.
Sources also said Imams cannot do any other work apart from being in the mosque whereas priests can opt for other jobs. Since the job of Imams is 14 hours long, more money is given to them.
Despite the increase, a section of Imams is not happy with the increment as they were expecting more funds after waiting for 12 years.
Meanwhile, Paschim Banga Sanatan Trust General Services head Sridhar Mishra, while speaking to News18, said: “See, we don't know who is getting what but no government thought about us till date. Whatever we get, we are happy as Banerjee has thought about us.” The chief minister had also declared that this year, the Durga Puja committee will get Rs 70,000 instead of the Rs 60,000 they received last year.
Not convinced with the dole, BJP's Suvendu Adhikari said: “Purohits don't need her money. She is doing this for politics. No minorities received benefits of development here.”
Justifying her decision to start stipend for religious leaders, Banerjee said: “They work very hard. If there is a riot, they help. They also help in programmes such as polio awareness and that's why both Imams and Purohits get stipend.”
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Honda H'Ness CB350
The leading two-wheeler manufacturer Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) is in the news for the past few months, majorly credit goes to its feature-loaded bikes CB350 H'ness and CB350RS. In order to attract more customers, the company has launched Extended Warranty and Extended Warranty Plus programs, allowing the customer to ride extra miles with increased life of the vehicle.
While confirming the news through a press release, HMSI says the offer has been introduced for the first 10,000 new vehicle purchase customers at zero cost, first come first served basis. The brand in an official statement says that the steps have been taken not only to reshape the premium segment but also set entirely a new benchmark in the industry that promises unmatched benefits and ensures ultimate peace of mind for customers.
As per the details shared by the HMSI, interested customers can opt for the Extended Warranty Plus program between 91 days to 9 years window. Under the zero-cost offer, the company provides a 10-year warranty coverage, covers all manufacturing defects, and increases the life of the vehicle with regular maintenance, among others. Apart from this, the program comes with a renewed option, which can be transferred flexibly if there is an event of change in ownership.
Commenting about the newly launched offer, the Director of Sales & Marketing at HMSI Yogesh Mathur says they are committed to delivering an unmatched ownership experience that stands as their highest priority. He said the ‘Extended Warranty' & ‘Extended Warranty Plus' programs naturally evolve as a seamless extension of their commitment, and they are already witnessing an overwhelming response from their Red Wing customers.
Celebrating the 1,00,000 customers milestone, we are confident that this program will set new satisfaction standards, and warranty coverage of up to 10 years, inclusive of high-value parts, customers can enjoy complete peace of mind and Honda's assurance across the country, Mathur added.
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Toyota recalls 168
Toyota, a prominent player in the automotive industry, has initiated a recall of approximately 168,000 vehicles that were produced recently in the United States due to a potential fire hazard.
This recall specifically pertains to certain models of Toyota Tundra and Tundra Hybrid vehicles from the 2022 and 2023 model years.
"The subject vehicles are equipped with a plastic fuel tube which could move and rub against a brake line and develop a fuel leak. A fuel leak in the presence of an ignition source could increase the risk of fire," Toyota said in a recall notice.
"For all involved vehicles, Toyota dealers will replace the fuel tube with an improved part and additional clamps at no cost to customers," it added.
Also Read: Toyota to launch a Maruti Fronx-based SUV? Here's what report says
Moreover, the automaker said that it is "currently preparing the remedy parts for this recall".Customers will receive free installation of protective materials and a clamp on the fuel tube as a temporary measure until the final remedy parts are available.
Toyota further noted that it will notify affected owners about this issue by early October 2023.
Last year, eight automakers, including Toyota voluntarily recalled more than 1,00,000 vehicles to fix faulty components.
The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said that the eight firms - Toyota, Kia, Ford Sales and Service Korea, Volkswagen Group Korea, Jaguar Land Rover Korea, BMW Korea, Dasan Heavy Industries Co and Motostar Korea - recalled a total of 1,02,169 units of 52 different models,
Issues that have led to the recall of various vehicles include a malfunctioning auxiliary heating system in Kia's Sorento SUV, an unreliable transmission system in Ford's Fusion sedan, and software-related issues in the Audi A6 Premium 45 TFSI quattro sedan, which is imported by Volkswagen Group Korea.
(With inputs from PTI)
Source: Live Mint
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Record $70 bn revenue for auto parts makers
India’s automotive components sector saw a record turnover of $69.7 billion in 2022-23, driven by a significant rise in demand for high value-added components for the domestic market, data released on Monday by apex auto components industry body Automotive Component Manufacturers Association of India (ACMA) showed. The growth was despite a moderation in exports to North America and Europe, as fears of inflation weighed on demand in those regions.
In FY23, automotive parts suppliers saw a 32.8% increase in sales to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to nearly $70 billion, reflecting a shift in preference for larger, high-powered vehicles across segments—sport utility vehicles (SUVs) in the passenger vehicles space, medium and heavy commercial vehicle, and high-capacity, premium motorcycles and scooters, said ACMA.
Growing domestic auto sales, however, led to higher component imports, reversing the $700-million trade surplus seen by the Indian auto parts sector in FY22 clocking a $200 million deficit in FY23, primarily due to higher imports from China, the single largest sourcing destination outside India for domestic OEMs.
Component imports grew 10.9% in FY23 to Rs1.63 trillion ($20.3 billion) from Rs1.36 trillion ($18.3 billion) a year ago. Asia accounted for 66% of the imports followed by Europe at 26% and North America at 6%, according to data shared by ACMA. Imports from the Asian region grew 12%, Europe by 6% and from North America by 23%, the industry body said.
Exports, on the other hand, rose 5.2% to Rs1.61 trillion ($20.1 billion) in 2022-23 in contrast to Rs1.41 trillion ($19.0 billion) in FY22. North America accounted for 32% of the exports, up 8%. Europe accounted for 31% and Asia for 26%, growing 3% and 4%, respectively.
ACMA data showed a nearly three-fold increase in contribution of electric vehicle parts, barring EV batteries, to overall auto components supplies to 2.7%, compared to 1% in FY22. India's EV component sales are dominated by electric two- and three-wheelers, with electric passenger vehicles (four-wheelers) representing just 1.0-1.5% of total EV sales. The auto components segment has been growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.1% over the last five years.
ACMA represents over 800 auto component manufacturers across tier-1, 2, and 3 levels and uses a mathematical model to arrive at its turnover volumes, which is then verified with industry stakeholders, including agencies. It sources trade data from the government.
“The domestic industry has definitely seen growth, which is really a bounce back from where we were. The export opportunity has risen, too. We are at $20 billion in terms of exports and $70 billion in revenue. I think the China +1 strategy is playing out from a value addition perspective. What we're doing in terms of investments in technology is paying off for us now. Many OEMs are looking towards new technologies, and we're able to follow suit, and providing them the technology solutions that they require. That's really where a lot of the value addition comes in. With the increase of EVs, there is more movement towards supplying them because that's the global trend. I see it continuing, and we're going to invest more in products for EVs," Sunjay Kapur, ACMA president, said.
Kapur expects India's reliance on China for imports of various components including engine parts, vehicle chassis, suspension and braking systems and electronics which has remained at a stable 20%-30% of all its total imports for the last five years to gradually come down. “We expect this reliance to come down even as we increase domestic volumes. We've been able to narrow down our trade gap significantly", he said.
ACMA expects the auto components industry to show a strong double-digit growth in FY23 as well, as domestic manufacturers invest significantly to expand capacity for passenger vehicles in the country. Passenger vehicles constitute 45% of all auto component sales in India in value terms, followed by 25% contribution from the CV sector, and nearly 20% from two-wheelers.
Source: Live Mint
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Come what may
Hours after the Supreme Court on 4 August stayed the conviction of Rahul Gandhi in a 2019 defamation case, the Congress leader took to the microblogging website saying 'Come what may, my duty remains the same'.
Taking to Twitter, Rahil Gandhi wrote, “Come what may, my duty remains the same. Protect the idea of India."
Source: Live Mint
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