Ford Motor India plans to outpace competitors with new models in entry-level small car segment

Wednesday 03 October 2012, 10:37 AM by

Ford Motor, the American auto maker, is looking ahead to implement a multi pronged strategy for the compact car segment of the Indian auto industry, under which the company is expected to roll in some new models to bank on the high volume market. Reportedly, the car maker is aiming a launch of new entry-level small car and a premium model placed over Figo hatchback, which is likely to drive in some decent volumes for the company.

Ford Motor India plans to outpace competitors with new models in entry-level small car segment | CarTrade.com
Ford Motor India plans to outpace competitors with new models in entry-level

Studies have shown that the car maker has witnessed a dwindle in its sales, backed by a tough competition from the rivals and increasing penchant of buyers towards diesel models. Owing to these, the company plans to introduce some advanced models based on the internationally proven platforms, which will help it to pull the masses in the country.

Speaking on the development of new models, the President of Asia Pacific and Africa Head, Ford Motor, Joe Hinrichs said, “We continue to look at all the segments in India, including at lower price points... It is something we study and are capable of doing.”

He indicated that the auto maker has introduced a model for Europe and South America, named 'Ka' and looks for a similar kind of product for the highly populated cities of India. A kind attention will be also paid towards the fuel efficiency as the buyers here consider every model in small car segment on this aspect. He added, "We have expertise in that area, we will continue to explore what our options are."

Expressing his views on premium small car segment, Hinrichs said that the company is expected to introduce some new models from its global 'B' platforms, which has rolled out some of the industry leading models. Vehicles like Fiesta sedan and the yet-to-be launched EcoSport Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) are given a birth from this platform, and the Fiesta hatchback which has been introduced in the international auto market, not in India, is also a development of this platform.

Stating that whether Fiesta hatchback will be introduced to the country, Hinrichs affirmed that the new models will be introduced in India after Ford establishes a new production unit post the completion of Gujarat unit. He added, “So you can anticipate that we will have a lot of products to get into the high-volume segment with our competitors.”

The President said that the new plant will start its operations somewhere in 2014, which will help Ford attract attention in the country as it will then introduce new models to its existing fleet. Presently, the auto maker rolls out 2 lac models and 3.4 lac powertrains from its Chennai facility. Addition of Gujarat facility will help the auto maker to introduce a further of 2.4 lac models and 2.7 lac drive trains. Industry experts believe that the addition of new capacity will enable Ford Motor to launch a minimum of six new vehicles in the Indian auto industry by 2015.

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