Japanese Auto Makers Still Find India Promising

Friday 27 June 2008, 00:00 AM by Satish

Nissan started its new manufacturing site construction in Chennai today. The ceremony was attended by Japanese and European Executives where Nissan shall build its first passenger vehicle factory. The new unit shall be built in associated with its French partner, Renault sprawling $1.1 billion investment that would be capable of producing 400,000 units upon completion.

Indian auto market witness dampened spirits with rising steel prices, rising inflation and hike in car prices. Nevertheless, automakers around the world still find India as a promising car market. Honda, Nissan and Toyota are venturing Indian car markets along with Russia and Africa. The projected sales of passenger vehicles are expected to escalate by 76 percent and India is expected to by the next mega market for cars.

“These developing markets used to be an afterthought for Japanese auto makers," said Hirofumi Yokoi, an analyst in Tokyo for CSM Worldwide, the auto market research company. “Now they are the industry’s future."

“It used to be that Honda relied on its US business, maybe too heavily. Nowadays, we are trying to spread the sources of profits more globally, beyond just one market.” says Honda’s president in India, Masahiro Takedagawa.

Toyota shall be building is second plant in Chenna, India and shall soon launch its small car in the country. Apart from Japanese auto makers, other major car giants such as BMW, Mercedes, Hyundai, etc. also perceive India to be a promising land for passenger and commercial vehicles in times to come.

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