Japan’s top minicar maker Suzuki Motor Corp. is to build a new auto assembly plant near the Indian capital New Delhi in a bid to meet growing demand in the country, a newspaper reported on Sunday.
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., a local subsidiary of Suzuki, plans to construct the new plant in Manesar near its assembly base, with operation scheduled to begin in 2013, the Nikkei business daily said, quoting company sources.
The plant, its third in Manesar, will be built at a cost of 30 billion yen (356 million dollars) with an annual capacity of 250,000 vehicles, boosting Suzuki’s annual production in India to 1.7 million units, the daily said.
Suzuki, one of the earliest foreign entrants into India’s auto market, has built a dominant position there, boasting a market share of nearly 50 percent, the newspaper said.
Suzuki in 2007 launched an assembly plant in Manesar with an annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles. It is now building its second factory on the same site, with an annual capacity set for 250,000 units.
The second plant is not scheduled to come on stream until spring 2012, but surging demand in India prompted Suzuki managers to order a third site ahead of the launch of the second, the paper said.
Popular subcompact models such as the Alto and Wagon R will likely be produced at the third facility, it added.
Nearly two-thirds of Suzuki’s group operating profit is estimated to come from India.
The latest move is designed to strengthen its lead in the key market and allow the company to use the profit earned there to expand operations in other markets. such as Europe and the rest of Asia, the Nikkei said.