Category — Automobile

Polaris JV Produces Low-Cost Mini-Pickup for India

A joint venture between  Polaris Industries  based in Medina, Minnesota and India’s Eicher Motors has designed a purpose-built vehicle that has a three-fold function: a family car, a pickup van, and a power generator. Priced at $3,670 the Multix has a “tubular frame structure and roll-over protection system that provides structural stability and reinforced safety.” Small enough to steer through congested city roads, it has an independent suspension system and 225 millimeters of ground clearance to tackle rough terrains.

Multix Mini Pickup

Multix

With its dual cab structure, the Multix seats a family of five and has ample space for luggage too. By folding the back seats it converts into a mini pickup that can be used for business purposes. However, the pickup’s unique feature is what it calls the X-PORT—which acts as a generator to give out up to three kilowatts of power to light homes, and power professional equipment such as drilling machines, DJ systems, and water pumps reports The Wall Street Journal.

“We have identified a large, untapped segment in independent businessmen with an estimated population of 58 million in India, and are committed to create a new and strongly differentiated automotive solution for them through ‘Multix’,” said Siddhartha Lal, managing director and chief executive of Eicher Motors, in a statement.

Located in Jaipur in the western state of Rajasthan, the Eicher Polaris factory can produce up to 60,000 vehicles each year, which can be doubled if needed, according to the company.

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July 3, 2015   No Comments

Will We See a Made in India Ford on U.S. Dealer Lots?

The 2017 Ford Ecosport could be the first car to be exported to the U.S. market from India from Ford’s new manufacturing and engine plant in Sanand, Gujarat.

Spread across 460 acres, the plant is an integrated facility comprising of a vehicle manufacturing facility and an engine plant. Ford has invested over $1 million in this venture which has an initial annual production capacity of 240,000 vehicles and 270,000 engines of which the company is expecting to ship out around 90,000 units every year.

Ford's New Plant at Sanand, IndiaIndiancarsbikes.in reports that up until now many manufacturers have tried to tap into the U.S. market, though their efforts have not been successful because of several reasons. However, if Ford manages to get through with their idea, then it will be a first-of-its-kind feat for the Indian manufacturing industry, where  a given brand will be importing cars to its homeland from an Indian subsidiary unit. The Korean company Hyundai, earlier moved some production lines entirely to India but the products where shipped to Africa and eastern Europe for the most part.

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June 11, 2015   No Comments

Make in India: Aequs Commences New Automotive Manufacturing Facility

In the latest example of a commitment to the Make in India’ initiative, Aequs Automotive, headquartered in Bangalore, announced the inauguration of its new 100% export-oriented automotive manufacturing facility in Belagavi. Located in the state of Karnataka, Belagavi is India’s first precision engineering special economic zone.

The 27,000 square feet facility will manufacture engine, transmission and hydraulic components for passenger and commercial vehicles for export to Aequs customers such as Jacobs Vehicle Systems, Bosch Group, Danaher Group, and Eaton Corporation.

Aequs Automotive in Belagavi

Aequs Automotive in Belagavi

Rajeev Kaul, Group CFO and Managing Director, India of Aequs said, “The launch of this new manufacturing facility and our planned investment of an additional $5 million to upgrade the facility over the next two to three years reflect our confidence in India’s ascension as a major automotive manufacturing hub and in our ability to serve the needs of our global customers.”

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June 10, 2015   No Comments

General Motors Expects its India Market to Eclipse Japan Soon

According to a news item in Reuters, General Motors aims to capture at least 5 percent market share in India within the next decade, as it sees that market overtaking Japan as the world’s third biggest with projected annual sales of 8 million vehicles by 2025. “India may be the last big white sheet of paper in the automotive industry,” Stefan Jacoby, GM’s chief of international operations, told Reuters in an interview. “We see growth potential in India, and believe there’s a good opportunity for the Chevrolet brand to take share in this market. There’s more prosperity and buying power. Vehicles selling for $5,000-$8,000 will more and more disappear in India,” he added. The company plans to launch two “image building” models in India: the Trailblazer SUV due in the second half of this year, and the Spin multi-purpose van next year.

Trailblazer SUV

Trailblazer SUV

GM plans to make India a new global manufacturing and export hub,  perhaps re-routing some production from South Korea, where labor costs have inflated in recent years.

“India’s going to become a key global production and export hub for GM,” said James Chao, Shanghai-based Asia-Pacific managing director at industry consultant IHS Automotive, noting India will partially replace South Korea as GM’s key Asian export base.

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June 5, 2015   No Comments

Automotive Mechatronics Supplier Develops Products in Pune

Marquardt, a Germany-based maker of mechatronic components, has set up an R&D center at Hinjewadi in Pune in the western state of Maharashtra. The facility will collaborate on products for the global automotive segment.

“In the past year we have received our largest contract in India from Tata Motors. Starting in the third quarter of 2016, we will deliver Passive Entry Passive Start Systems for various cars of the OEM [original equipment manufacturer],” Dr. Harald Marquardt, CEO of the group said, according to The Hindu Business Line. The company also plans to set up a manufacturing unit, most likely in Pune in the next four-five years, the CEO added.

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May 6, 2015   No Comments