While Proton is prowling in Pakistan, guess what malaysian car company is planning a foray into the Indian subcontinent??..Read on
One of the leading car manufacturers of Malaysia, Naza Automotive Manufacturing Sdn BHd, is keen on setting up an assembly plant in India to manufacture its small car the Sutera. The company plans to assemble and sell around 30,000 cars here, a percentage of which will also be exported to select countries. Company officials met Tamil Nadu chief minister M Karunanidhi in this regard.
Sutera, a hatchback which will compete against the likes of the Indica, Santro and Wagon R is powered by a 1.1 litre DOHC 16 valve fuel injected engine that makes over 65PS of power and a max torque of 88Nm. The engine in question is a Chinese-made unit based on a Japanese design. It is coupled to a 5-speed manual transmission, with the company currently working towards introducing an automatic too.
Sutera’s design is one penned by Pininfarina, but slightly modified by Naza with the front reminding one of the previous generation Focus. The design is punctuated with triangles; the front indicators are triangular, so is the rear clear lens tail lamp assembly which incorporates reverse and indicator lights. The door handles too have a triangle surround.
Further, the car runs on 14-inch wheels shod with 165/55-section rubber, but this is subject to change in India in order to suit our conditions better. Suspension is McPherson struts upfront and a trailing beam type at the rear, which has been developed by Lotus Engineering. The same firm that has helped tweak suspension on our very own …Naza has however chosen to go in for a slightly softer setting for Malaysia, which will suit Indian road conditions better as well.
Look at what good ole' GM is readying for the indian market!!
CHEVROLET EPICA , CAPTIVA AND SPARK.....
General Motors India will set up a 1,40,000 capacity plant in Talegaon, near Pune. The plant will not only manufacture the much awaited Chevrolet Spark, but will also play a crucial part as the production hub for GM Daewoo Auto & Technology (GM-DAT) future products. India will be part of GM-DAT`s global manufacturing resource, and the products could go anywhere across the world, GM Asia-Pacific president Nick Reilly was quoted as saying. The new plant has a ramp up possibility of just short of 300,000 units to cater to both domestic and export demands.
Besides the Spark, GMI will also build the SUV Captiva and D-segment Epica at the plant. In an earlier interview with OVERDRIVE, Rajiv Chaba had said that the Captiva and Epica would only come by the end of 2007 or beginning 2008. This is also the time when the Pune facility would be ready to roll out cars.
The Spark too would be made at Pune eventually, but the production of the car will begin at Halol soon.
The Captiva will take on the likes of the Honda CR-V, the Hyundai Tuscon and possibly the Toyota Fortuner if it does make its way to India by then. The GM SUV be available with a 2.0-litre common rail diesel and a 2.4-litre petrol engine.
As for the Epica, the car will compete for market share with the Honda Accord and Hyundai’s Sonata. It will share its diesel engine with the Captiva, though in a different state of tune. Further, there’s a good possibility that the plant might be an export hub of sorts for the two cars besides the Spark.The Spark in the mean time would initially be assembled at the Halol facility and the production would then be shifted to the Pune plant in 2008. The 120-acre plant finally, will have a robotised body shop and employ 1000 workers. An engine assembly plant is not part of the initial phase, however.
Ford India is on a roll. The success of the Fiesta has stunned both competitors and the company alike, with monthly sales of the car touching 2000 units consistently since its launch. The 1.4-litre diesel variant accounts for nearly 50 per cent of these sales. In a bid to build upon this success, Ford has launched a cheaper variant of the diesel model. Badged the Exi and priced at Rs 6.85 lakh ex-showroom Delhi, it is slotted between Hyundai’s Accent Viva CRDi and Accent CRDi models.
The price cut means the new model does away with features from the Zxi variant, like all round power windows and a music system among others.
“The TDCi-powered Fiesta Diesel EXi with the smoothest and quietest diesel engine in its class will dramatically change customers’ perceptions about the traditional diesel vehicle,” said Scott McCormack, vice president, marketing, sales and service, Ford India said in a statement. Ford had earlier this year launched a Zxi variant of its 1.4-litre Duratec engined Fiesta after customers complained of hand-me-down interiors.
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