Since India’s new PM waived the green flag of ‘Make in India’ after getting into the office, German carmakers started falling into it one by one. Followed by BMW, it is Mercedes-Benz which has opted for localizing its cars upto 90%.
The latest model to enter the fray of localization at its Pune manufacturing facility is the GLA compact SUV. The announcement came at the same platform where the maker inaugurated new production line. But localization will affect only the diesel variant of model, as said; the petrol shall continue to follow the CBU (completely built unit) route.
About the new facility, Mercedes-Benz had pumped in investment of more than Rs 1,000 crore to make this vision a reality. From 10,000 it can straightly produce 20,000 units a year at this 40 hectare spawned unit. With this huge space at its disposal, Mercedes claimed the title of largest manufacturing facility owned by any luxury carmaker in India.
At the moment, three-pointed star logoed carmaker produces C-Class, E-Class, S-Class, GL-Class and M-Class in Pune, whereas it has intended to soon rope in the CLA as well which is now doing good on the CBU route along with A-Class, B-Class, CLS, and SLK-Class.
Hence, putting some sense to this story was the last year’s sales report of Benz which pointed out 53% growth (year-on-year basis) along with the highest ever fiscal sale of 11,213 units (April’14 – March’15). And that’s what has compelled the automaker to build the largest facility ever built by any luxury carmaker in India. To lend a supporting shoulder, Maharashtra’s chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union environment minister Prakash Javadekar were the chief guest of the event.