Renault India’s manufacturing plant in Chennai for making engines will begin operations by April 2012. These engines are part of the company”s localisation process for their small new hatchback. This car is scheduled to hit Indian markets in January, and is an India specific car, which not be produced in another market. This car will compete in the same space as VW Polo and Maruti Swift.
According to the company’s VP Marketing and Sales, Len Curran, their engine facility will be launched and operational by April. He added that the facility will have an installed capacity of more than 1,00,000 engines a year.
The forthcoming hatchback from Renault is developed on V-platform and will be available in both diesel and petrol variants. This car will be one among three products that Renault plans to launch next year, marking the start of more serious manufacturing in India.
Their newly launched Fluence sedan and luxury Koleos SUV that is to launch in October are CKD assembled and do not have any local content. Curran said that their next three vehicles will contain at least 65 to 80% local content.
The Fluence sedan has managed to sell around 290 units since it was first launched in the Indian auto market. Curran explained that they are not going for more volumes through this. He added that they are currently trying to build their brand image. Their ambition, in the long term, is to be taken more seriously. They also want to increase their market share to 5%. To achieve this, they will need to offer products across all volume categories.