C K Birla Group-owned Hindustan Motors, one of the country’s oldest carmaker, plans to double its manufacturing capacity at Tiruvallur plant near here by 2012 end, a top company official said.
“The Tiruvallur plant has a capacity of 12,000 units and this year the company should be reaching close to 5,000 units.
Next year it should touch 10,000 units and two years down the line, capacity would be doubled to reach 24,000,” Hindustan Motors India Executive-Vice President Y. V. S. Vijay Kumar told PTI.
The company currently has two manufacturing facilities in India, one at Tiruvallur and the other at Uttarpara in West Bengal.
Hindustan Motors sells passenger vehicles, including premium sedan Lancer-Cedia, Outlander, Pajero and Montero, in India in technical collaboration with Japanese automaker Mitsubishi.
The Tiruvallur plant manufactures Cedia, Outlander, Pajero and Montero while the Uttarpara facility produces the Ambassador and multi-utility vehicles-Trekker, Porter and Pushpak.
Last year, the company had sold 2,200 units in the country. Mr. Kumar said the company would make only “minimum investments” for doubling plant capacity, but did not elaborate.
The Tiruvallur plant began as a facility for manufacturing earth moving equipment three decades ago and in 1998 started manufacturing cars as well.
About the launch of “Evolution” series in India, he said the company would bring out the premium luxury sedan Mitsubishi Evolution ‘EVOX’ in August this year.
“This will be a very high performance four seater capacity sedan with 300 BHP and will deliver very high horse power,” Mr. Vijay Kumar said.
Mr. Vijay Kumar said the car would be introduced as a Completely Built Unit (in India) and would be targeted at the ’niche’ market. Initially, the company aimed to sell 40 units a year.
‘This vehicle would be on the SUV Outlander platform and will aptly satisfy those passionate about high performance cars’, he said.
On the recently launched upgraded Sports Utility Vehicle “Outlander” Bharat Stage Four (BS IV) version, he said the company has got ‘tremendous response’ for it.
‘Already we are doing about 120-150 units of Outlander every month. We are targeting to sell around 250-300 by October’ he said.
The company also plans to launch Bharat Stage IV variant of premium SUV Pajero by August this year.
Asked if they would launch Bharat Stage IV variant of Mitsubishi Lancer-Cedia sedan, he replied in the negative.
’Sales of Cedia is only in few pockets like Punjab, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Totally we are selling around 120 units. There are no plans to upgrade the Cedia as of now’, he said.
Mitsubishi and Hindustan Motors jointly have 40 dealerships across the country.