7 reasons why MG Hector became an instant success in India

Written by Parichay Malvankar

On 27th June 2019, MG (Morris Garages) Motor India launched the Hector SUV in India, and it has been more than two years since. MG launched Hector as their first product, and it still is the defining pillar for the brand. As of date, MG showrooms house the Hector, Hector Plus, ZS EV and Gloster SUVs.

There were many things that the brand did right to strike the right chord, but here, we will discuss the top 7 reasons why the Hector SUV is well accepted.

The Launch:

MG Motor India’s journey should be a case study not just for new entrants planning to launch cars in India; but also for existing players struggling for more than a decade. In a market dominated by a brand selling affordable cars accepted in any size and shape blindfolded, it was a bold move on MG’s behalf to start in a higher tier. One must not forget the mammoth effort MG put in for the marketing and strategy at the time of launch, which broke the ice and even barriers. And then, look at their showrooms! In today’s day and age, if you’re going to spend over a million rupees or close to two million rupees on an automobile, you want to do it at a location that looks and feels premium and not like a government office setup from the 80s and 90s. MG Motor India, backed by SAIC, got all of this right even before launching their first car in the market. That is some serious commitment and attention towards the demand from potential customers they have not even seen walking in.

The Size:

While exterior dimensions are crucial for that butch SUV appearance, space on the inside is equally important. Hector & Hector Plus ace both the departments just right. With these two products, you’re getting an SUV whose size is one of the best in the segment and is larger in dimensions than some SUVs from a segment above. When there’s either of these SUVs on the road, there is no missing them. Street cred is just what the audience craves to massage their ego, and people do desire more real estate on wheels. To complement that on the inside, you can buy either a 5-seater, 6-seater or 7-seater variant shuffling between variants of the Hector & its Plus sibling. While the 5-seater version was already roomy, the 6-seater Plus with captain seats allowed customers to be driven around more comfortably. And for those who have bigger families, the 7-seater model expands the horizon of versatility. So no matter the body type of your family members, there’s a comfortable Hector iteration waiting to be tried and tested at your nearest showroom.

The Tech:

Who thought you would be talking and communicating with your car back in 2019? Marquee British automaker MG introduced their iSMART infotainment with the Hector with connected car features. When launched, the voice assistant allowed for more than 100 commands. It was developed to learn the Indian accent thanks to the built-in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning algorithm. The driver or any passenger inside the Hector could use voice commands for operations such as opening & closing of windows & sunroof, climate control setting changes, navigation assistance, etc. In 2021, MG raised the bar by introducing 35+ Hinglish voice commands. The 2021 Hector SUV now comes with over 60 connected car features, weather forecast, Wi-Fi connectivity, OTA updates and more…

The Sunroof:

Indian car buyers love having a sunroof, and MG Motor India brought in the Hector with the largest one in the segment back in the day. Before the Hector was launched, sizeable panoramic glass roofs were only seen on luxury cars. But thanks to Hector, the sunroof is now a mainstream feature in the mid-size SUV segment. This dual-pane glass roof has such a strong draw that cars without this feature don’t have the same appeal as the Hector does. Also, this panoramic roof adds to a lot of drama when being driven around at night or during the monsoon season. It also adds a sense of extra space and openness inside the cabin, eliminating any possibility of claustrophobia.

The Promise:

MG Motor India, along with selling you a feature-loaded SUV in the form of the Hector, also offers you complete ownership assurance. Unmatched in the segment, a Hector buyer is provided with 5 years / unlimited km warranty, 5 years / unlimited km roadside assistance, 5 labour-free services, 3-60 plan for an assured buyback option, 24×7 pulse hub assistance and more. This MG Shield promise from the brand is for a hassle-free ownership experience which most buyers desire. So right from buying the Hector to maintaining it and eventually selling it, MG Motor India wants to be a part of the entire journey.

The Face:

MG Motor India roped in Benedict Cumberbatch as their brand ambassador to announce and emphasise their British origin. Benedict became the face of MG Motor India and was seen in the Hector TVC. The iconic British car brand with a renowned British actor introduced Hector to the Indian mass market. Benedict’s performance in the British crime television series Sherlock was appreciated worldwide. The actor is also known for his social and philanthropic work and MG Motor India follows the same narrative in the Indian market to nurture diversity.

The TCO:

When we said that MG Motor India did their homework, we meant it. It is one thing to launch a car in India, but it’s a whole different ball game to get people spending money on it. In India, buying a car is the 2nd most significant purchase for a family after purchasing a property, so customers ensure that their money is spent well. At the moment, MG Motor India offers the lowest Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for the Hector 2021 at INR 45 paise/kilometre for petrol variants and INR 60 paise/kilometre for diesel variants. These figures are calculated up to 1,00,000 kilometres of usage. Customers also have an option to buy Protect Plans for their MG SUV for up to 5 years. Packages start at INR 8,000, and even inflation protection is being offered. Apart from the classic schedule maintenance plans, the premium package also includes wear and tear parts.

When the MG Hector arrived in India, it was launched at an introductory price tag of INR 12.18 lakh to INR 16.88 lakh ex-showroom Delhi. Today, prices for the Hector start at INR 13.18 lakh, and the Hector Plus starts at INR 13.62 lakh. At this asking price, the MG Hector offers exceptional value to the aspirational customer in India who wants to own an SUV. Yes, one can say that prices have gone up, but that is across the entire mobility solutions starting from bicycles, scooters, motorcycles and cars. But even with the price delta, the Hector sits in a sweet spot, rivalling cars from more seasoned manufacturers; and holds its ground very well. In a segment where you have the Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, Tata Harrier, Tata Safari and even the Jeep Compass overlapping in price, the Hector & Hector Plus throw some serious punches on the below-mentioned points.

We’re not saying that the MG Hector and Hector Plus are the best SUVs in the segment and that nothing else comes close. But from the moment you step inside MG showrooms and eventually check out the vehicle, you know that a lot of effort was put in to get you to where you are. And that effort has been valued by thousands of customers who are driving around in a Hector.