New Delhi: Country’s largest auto maker Tata Motors will deliver up to 60,000 units of the Nano, which is touted as the world’s cheapest car, by July next year while remaining committed to handing over the first one lakh cars by 2010 once its mother plant in Sanand goes on stream.
Tata Motors chairman Ratan Tata said in the company’s Annual Report for 2008-09 that 95% construction work at the Singur plant was completed before the project was “thwarted” by Trinamool Congress last year, forcing the company to relocate it to Gujarat.
He said the new plant in Sanand is likely to be ready by the end of this financial year. It would have an initial production capacity of 2.5 lakh units per annum.
“In the meantime, the Nano is being produced in other plant facilities so as to enable around 50,000-60,000 cars to be available to customers over the next 12 months until the main new facility in Gujarat comes on line,” Tata told shareholders in the report.
The company is currently manufacturing the car at its Pantnagar facility, which has an annual capacity of 50,000 units.
Meanwhile, a Tata Motors spokesperson said, “Once the upcoming Sanand facility comes on line after completion of the last quarter of this financial year, it will supplement Pantnagar, completing the first 1,00,000 deliveries in October-December 2010.”
Referring to the violent agitation in Singur led by Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee on land acquisition issues, Tata said relocation of the Nano facility to another state was the only option left.
“The company’s plans of spearheading industrial investment in West Bengal by locating the manufacturing plant for the Nano in the state was thwarted by a local political party, citing injustice done to the residents of the area by the state government in the acquisition of land for the project,” he said.
Praising the Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi for “an impressive display of leadership and pragmatism”, Tata said all necessary approvals were received within just three days.
“The equipment from the plant in West Bengal, which was 95% complete, was dismantled and is being transported to Gujarat,” he added.
Conceived in 2003, the Nano project has cost over Rs2,000 crore to the company. Tata Motors launched the car on 23 March this year and delivered it to the first customer last month.