INDIA: Isuzu firms up factory plans - report
Isuzu Motors is reported to have firmed up plans for India with a manufacturing plant in Sri City, Andhra Pradesh.
Isuzu will spend US$185m on the greenfield plant that can make nearly 50,000 vehicles a year, The Times of India reported.
An announcement is expected on 15 March in Hyderabad, the paper said. The plant will be ready for production by 2015.
"The initial plan is to roll out MU7 Choiz (a sports utility vehicle with a three-litre engine) and V Cross, [a pickup truck with a] 2.5-litre engine," sources told the paper.
Homologation was completed a few weeks ago in Pune.
Isuzu, known for trucks, buses and diesel engines will concentrate on pick-ups and SUVs in India, the paper said. Isuzu's Panther SUV is rebadged by General Motors India as the Chevrolet Tavera in India and its diesel engines are installed in Hindustan Motors’ Ambassador and Contessa car models.
Sri City, though located in Andhra Pradesh, is just on the outskirts of Chennai, close to parts suppliers serving that city's auto manufacturing hub, and also close to a large port.
"Andhra Pradesh is desperate to get an automotive factory. Remember the failed Vashishta Wahan, which was supposed to be an Indian arm of Volkswagen, but turned out to be a fictitious entity. They are going all out for a car plant, but nothing happened. Even with Isuzu, the original announcement was due in December-end, but has since been postponed to March," sources told The Times of India.