Hyundai Motor's fully owned Indian subsidiary has launched the Getz supermini.

The Getz is the fifth Hyundai to be manufactured in India and has been introduced as a five-door hatchback with 1.3-litre, 83bhp petrol engine. There is no diesel for the moment as Hyundai India has not been able to competitively price a CRDi-powered version.

The new model is expected to compete against the smaller Tata Indica and Fiat Palio and at the same time is also expected to take buyers away from the Ford Ikon and Maruti Esteem sedans. Hyundai claims the Getz has more interior space than the Esteem and Ikon because it is taller and wider.

The Getz has been launched with 65% local content and Hyundai aims to raise that to 80% within a year. The car is assembled on the A2 assembly line in HMIL's plant in Irrungattukottai, which it shares with the Accent Viva, Elantra and Sonata models.

Getz volume is expected to be constrained initially as the line capacity is currently only 1,000 units a month. But HMIL plans to double output by the end of the year and is working on increasing plant capacity from 150,000 units to 250,000.

While there are no official figures, it is estimated he A2 production line set up mostly for the Getz cost around $US220 million.

Hyundai India has launched two versions of the Getz priced from INR450,000 (€7,900). ABS is optional but the airbags standard in most other export markets have been omitted.

Deepesh Rathore / Tilak Swarup