Toyota Kirloskar Motors (TKM), the Indian division of Japanese automaker Toyota Motors, will start exporting two vehicles from its local portfolio to the South African market. The Toyota Etios sedan was launched exclusively for the Indian market in 2010, while the hatch Etios Liva followed in mid 2011. Come 4th April, TKM will dispatch the first batch of Etios twins to the South African market, where the official launch is scheduled for 21st May 2012.
The Bangalore facility will provide the platform for the export range. Moreover, only petrol variants will be exported to the right hand drive South African market. In order to meet the demands, TKM announced to ramp up the annual production from current 80,000 units to 1,20,000 units.
Positioned as entry level cars, the Etios twins will replace the Toyota SA’s compact hatch Tazz, which faded out five years ago. Moreover, the exported models will be trimmed to suit the SA market, and might receive new power plant and upgraded cosmetics. Following the export to South Africa, the Japanese automaker plans to expand its foothold across emerging markets like Brazil, Indonesia and Thailand. In Thailand, the Etios will join the Thai EcoCar project that was launched to promote clean, green cars. The Etios has already been caught testing in Indonesia, and China might receive a bigger brother of the entry level car.