afaqs!

Maruti's upcoming sports sedan, Kizashi goes to Dentsu Creative Impact

By Biprorshee Das , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | November 25, 2010
Last month, Maruti had called its roster agencies, Lowe, Dentsu and Publicis Capital to pitch for the business.

Gearing up to launch its sports sedan, Maruti Kizashi in India, automobile major Maruti Suzuki has awarded the brand's creative mandate to Dentsu Creative Impact. Shashank Shrivastava, chief general manager, marketing, Maruti Suzuki confirmed the development to afaqs!.

The agency won the business after a pitch, in which Maruti's other roster agencies, Publicis Capital and Lowe Lintas participated as well. The account size could not be ascertained.

The media duties will be handled by Lintas Media Group, which is Maruti Suzuki's AOR.

"We're ecstatic on winning the account. It's extremely gratifying to be partnering Maruti Suzuki on launching the much-awaited Kizashi. Charged and enthusiastic, we are looking forward to working closely with the team at Maruti Suzuki to steer the brand to great success in times to come," Junichi Minohara, vice-president and executive director, Dentsu Creative Impact tells afaqs!.

Suzuki, the Japanese auto major and parent company of Maruti India, currently sells Suzuki Kizashi in the US and Japan. The mid-size car was showcased for the first time at the Frankfurt Motor Show 2007, and then at the Tokyo Motor Show in the same year. The car was launched commercially in Japan in October 2009, and its US launch followed two months later.

The company also displayed the production model of the car at the Auto Expo held in Delhi this year. With the Kizashi, Maruti Suzuki is making its foray into the luxury sedan segment. Minohara states that the segment is different from that of the compact car and signifies a shift in domain for the brand.

On what helped Dentsu clinch the account, he adds, "From a strategic perspective, it was our ability to showcase our understanding of the complexities and dynamics of this market, along with offering end-to-end solutions in overcoming these challenges and threats. Also, our understanding of Kizashi as a brand and our ability to propose a distinct and sustainable positioning for the brand in the segment was in line with the client's perspective and expectation," he says.

Industry experts view the Kizashi as Maruti's response to the Honda Civic, as the company plans to offer more features in the price range of Rs 10-12 lakh.

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