Hindustan Motors launches Mitsubishi's sports utility vehicle in India

Hindustan Motors has launched Japanese auto major Mitsubishi's sports utility vehicle (SUV) Outlander in India. Kolkata-based Hindustan Mototrs plans to assembled the vehicle at its Chennai plant under licence from Mitsubishi.

With an ex-showroom price of Rs20.20 lakh, this sports utility vehicle is expected to compete with the Honda CRV.

Hindustan Motors also said that it would introduce a variant of Lancer in India, without disclosing when it plansthe launch. Besides, HM is also expected to replace its commercial vehicle RTV, which it has stopped manufacturing.

The Birla Group firm hopes to replicate in India the success of the Outlander in North America, Japan, Australia, Canada and West Europe.

The all-wheel control (AWC) SUV is powered by 2.4-litre, 16-valve Mitsubishi innovative valve-timing and electronic control system (MIVEC) petrol engine that gives a maximum power of 170 PS.

The SUV market in India grew 32 per cent to 130,041 vehicles in FY08 from 98,086 vehicles in the previous fiscal.

In yet another instance of company's success stories, after a gap of four years, HM received a significant contract from the Centre to supply its iconic 'Ambassador' to the government.

However, HM's September sales slowed on tighter financing and margins are under pressure from rising raw material prices, according to top officials from the company.