With the bankruptcy crisis behind it, US car maker General Motors expects sales in India to grow by up to 50 per cent next year on the back of its proposed mini car to be launched this year-end.

General Motors India (GMI), the wholly-owned subsidiary of the American car maker, has also geared up to introduce its small car Spark with a 800cc petrol engine in 2010.

“We will launch our mini car by the end of this year and with this, we are expecting sales to grow by 40—50 per cent next year,” GMI President and Managing Director Karl Slym told reporters here.

Last year the company had sold 65,702 units and is expecting a jump of 10 per cent in this year, he said.

“We are even hopeful of selling 75,000 units in 2009,” he said, adding GMI has already sold over 42,000 units this year.

Mr. Slym said GMI’s sales in India were affected due to perception when its US parent was struggling to come out of bankruptcy. In June General Motors had filed for bankruptcy protection in the US, which excluded the Indian operations.

The company emerged out of bankruptcy in the same month.

Indian car market is estimated to be 20 lakh units in this year and is expected to be 40 lakh units in next two year, of which over 80 per cent will be small cars, Mr. Slym said.

Although GMI has presence in the small car segment with its Spark and Aveo U-VA, it is still a fringe player compared to Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai and Tata Motors.

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