Ford plans to export engines from India to the Asia-Pacific region to take advantage of cheaper production costs in the country.

Ford is spending US$500m expanding its factory in Chennai, South India, to make 250,000 engines and 200,000 vehicles annually by 2010, Michael Boneham, managing director of the local unit, told Bloomberg News. Ford may also export a small car that it plans to produce in India, he said.

Exports of Indian-made engines, parts and other components may rise almost six-fold to $40bn by 2015 from about $6.7bn in 2003, as automakers seek to trim production costs, Bloomberg said, citing McKinsey & Co data.