labels: automotive, mahindra & mahindra, passenger cars
M&M to up Scorpio production news
Our Corporate Bureau
15 September 2003

Mumbai: Mahindra & Mahindra is planning to increase the production of its sports utility vehicle (SUV), the Scorpio, in order to reduce the waiting time for buyers. At present, the waiting period for the Scorpio is about three weeks.

M&M general manager (sales and marketing, automotive sector) Akhilesh Kumar says the company will increase the production capacity of the Scorpio to 3,000 units per month in the next three-four months, from the current 2,400 units. M&M has been periodically increasing the production levels of the Scorpio since its launch last year.

The success of the Scorpio in the Indian market is leading the company to contemplate bringing in other SUVs into India. Also, with the launch of a number of SUVs like the GM Forester, Honda-CRV, Hyundai Terracan and the Suzuki Grand Vitara, this segment has become very competitive in recent times.

To compete more strongly in this segment, M&M recently initiated talks with Korean automobile major Ssangyong to launch the seven-seater SUV, the Rexton, in India.

M&M executive director and president (automotive sector) Alan Durante says discussions with Ssangyong are on and the outcome will depend on the price the Rexton could be offered in India. The company will either bring in the cars as completely built units (CBUs) or as semi- or completely-knocked down kits and assemble them locally.

Sources say the Rexton, which is priced in the Rs 15-18 lakh range, is considerably smaller than other imported SUVs that are crowding Indian roads. It is also a relatively new international product and was launched in the Korean market in 2001. The vehicle comes fitted with a Ssangyong IDI 2874cc turbo-diesel engine.

Ssangyong, earlier a part of the Daewoo group, is now an independent company specialising in manufacturing SUVs. The company sells its vehicles in Western Europe, China, New Zealand, South Africa and Malaysia. Most of these vehicles are priced in the Rs 14.9-19 lakh range.

M&M announced a 445-per cent surge in its net profit for the first quarter this fiscal. The company ended the first quarter of the year with a net profit of Rs 42.49 crore for the quarter ended 30 June 2003 as compared to Rs 7.79 crore a year ago. Its total income also rose 22 per cent from Rs 831.48 crore last year to Rs 1,013.77 crore this fiscal.


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M&M to up Scorpio production