Maruti 800, the middle class families' sapna, is now closer to reality. A far cry from when it was launched as a status symbol, Maruti 800 has traversed through different contours of aspiration. Today, Maruti Udyog is sparing no effort to position "the people's car" as an upgrade for the vast two-wheeler population.
Two new thirty-second regional TVCs have been created, targeting two-wheeler owners, who are finding it difficult to upgrade a car due to perceived high EMI.
These TVCs highlight the finance route (EMI of Rs 2,599) through which they can realise their dream and transform their lives.
The first commercial, titled 'Family', opens with a young executive parking his scooter and running his hand wistfully over a Maruti 800. As he heads towards his house, he is surprised to see the number plate reading '2599'; once inside, his wife tosses him a sweater with '2599' knitted on it; as he heads towards his kids, they toss him the small dinky car they've been playing with. Throwing up his hands in despair, the man proclaims that he cannot afford a car due to high EMI. Cut to the product shot of Maruti 800 driving into the centre of the frame, with a huge bubble that says: 2,599.
The second TVC is more creative. Titled 'Jalebi', the film opens on a fat man making jalebis; on a side platter are jalebis in the shape of 2,599. Cut to a family stopping at the food court in their scooter; the young man run his hand wistfully over a Maruti 800. His wife, who says they cannot afford 4,000 EMI, admonishes the young man. The child suddenly points to the 2,599 shaped jalebis, and on sensing their excitement, the owner's servant puffs up his chest and asks the family if they'd like to buy a Maruti 800 for 2,599 EMI.
According to a Maruti Udyog spokesperson, "These TVCs will excite a good number of two-wheeler owners to enquire about car purchase. Although the selling cycle for these customers is expected to be longer and their inhibitions would be many, once this cycle of conversion from two-wheeler to four-wheeler starts happening, it would be a pure goldmine."
The television campaign has been supported by newspaper advertisements explaining the scheme in details, hoardings across sixty-six cities, which will act as a reminder medium, and special kiosks for finance melas. Besides this, additional leaflets explaining the '2599 scheme' along with innovative '2 to 4-wheeler upgrade' tags (to be hung on two-wheelers standing in parking lots near the finance mela site).
The TVCs debuted during the course of the first India-Pakistan cricket match on March 13, 2004 and will continue throughout the series. In addition, spots on major election programs on Aaj Tak, NDTV, Star News and Zee News would start from next week.