MIN RATNA BAJRACHARYA
It's no secret that international carmakers are keen to enter the Nepali market. What's more interesting is how Nepali names seem to have caught the fancy of carmakers as well. Only a month ago, Ford launched an SUV named Everest. Now, Škoda has launched Yeti, a compact SUV, for carbuyers in Nepal and across the world.
"Nepal is a relatively small market but it is important to us," says Oliver Glaser, Sales Director of Škoda's International Assembly Projects (pictured). "Our actions here are parallel to what we do in India and have been more successful." Yeti was launched in India only two weeks ago.
Glaser expressed satisfaction with Škoda's partnership with Morang Auto Works (MAW) and the way Škoda's brand has been presented in Nepal. In its two years here, the European carmaker has been selling the high-end sedans Laura, Octavia. and Fabia in the small car segment. With Yeti, Škoda will enter the lucrative market for SUVs in Nepal. "We expect a good response on Yeti. In fact, we sold eight units even before the launch," says Vishnu Agrawal of MAW. Glaser and Agrawal anticipate selling 100 cars within the year.
The sturdy-looking Yeti has a ground clearance of 180mm and is fitted with a rough road package of upgraded shock absorbers, as well as a protective underbody coating like all of Škoda's cars. The SUV gives mileage of 8-10kms on city roads and 12kms on the highway. The new model will now be showcased alongside earlier ones in Škoda's showroom in Thapathali.
Business reporting 101, ASHUTOSH TIWARI