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Ford's global chief to unveil new small car in India news
22 September 2009

Ford Motor Co is expected to announce its new small car for the Indian market on Wednesday, with Alan Roger Mulally, Ford's president and chief executive, making a lightening visit to the country for the unveiling.

Although Ford officials seem to be playing it low key with no detailed announcement yet, Wheels Unplugged says the new small car has been codenamed Ford B517 is expected to be launched in March next year.

To be built at its Chennai facility, the new car will come in petrol and diesel versions of 1.2 litre and 1.5 litre engine capacity respectively to satisfy the Indian government's definition of a small car.

The car would have 85 per cent local content, and the company is in talks with Tata Steel for better steel prices with the increased volumes, according to the report. The company was earlier sourcing steel blankets - cut steel sheets - from its sister plant in Thailand.

This is part of Ford Motor's plans to integrate car designs globally and develop compact and mid-sized cars to help improve profitability and productivity.

Mulally, it may be recalled is the man who got rid of Ford's loss-making marquee brands Jaguar and Land Rover, selling them to Tata Motors last year, just ahead of the global turndown.

This timely sale helped Ford weather the recession without government aid.

Mulally had earlier also sold another marquee - Aston Martin, made famous by fictional super-spy James Bond.

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Ford's global chief to unveil new small car in India