The launch of Tata Motor's small car Nano, which was earlier scheduled to be launched by Diwali this year, may face more delays than expected.
According to a vendor who spoke to the press at the recent Tata Motor Vendor Meet (See: Tata Motors to meet Nano vendors on 16 October), Tata Motors would launch 200-300 Nano cars from the either the company's Pune or Pantnagar plant by the end of the current financial year as the soft launch of Nano. The small car would roll out in larger numbers only later, perhaps, by the first quarter of 2009 the vendor said.
Tata Motors makes the Ace Minitrucks from its Pantnagar facility, even though its largest plant is located in Pune.
The company is said to have asked its vendors to asist in expediting the process. After the soft launch of the car, the company plans to roll out the Nano from its Pantnagar facility in Uttarkhand even after the Gujarat plant starts operating.
Tata Motors has also assured the vendors of some sort of compensation for the loss they suffetred in Singur.
The Gujarat government has offered 1,100 acres of land for the project site of the Nano at Sanand in Gujarat, which Tata Motors' chairman Ratan Tata, says would be the mother plant for the Nano project.
The plantwill have an initial capacity of 2.50 lakh units, which will be expanded up to 5 lakh cars per year.
The company itself has re-fixed the deadline for the launch of the car as "the last quarter of current financial year," instead of the 2008 October launching date announced earlier this year.
In the first week of September, Tata Motors suspended the construction and commissioning of a plant to manufacture the 'Nano,' priced at Rs One lakh following a stalemate created due to tension and violence in the project area.
Earlier, Tatas had planned to roll out the car from Singur in West Bengal, from where it pulled out due to immense political resistance. The relocation of the plant will make it difficult for the Tata engineers to roll out the product on time.