New Delhi: The country’s second largest carmaker Hyundai Motors India Ltd today announced plans of manufacturing a premium hatchback ‘i20´ in India by the end of this year for sales in the overseas market.
“We may produce ‘i20´ by the end of 2008 at Chennai plant,” Arvind Saxena, HMIL senior vice president, sales and marketing told PTI.
Initially, the car will be produced with an intention to cater to the overseas market as the company has not firmed up plans to launch it in the domestic market, he said.
The new car will be a step above Hyundai’s global car ‘i10´, rolled out here in October last year.
i20 will be produced from HMIL’s upcoming second facility at Chennai. With this new plant, the total capacity of the company will be expanded to 6 lakh units per annum, Saxena said.
HMIL has been stepping up efforts to make the country its export hub for small cars, with 50% of its total capacity meant for the overseas market, he added.
The facility is expected to be operational in the coming weeks. The company is looking to sell 2.3 lakh units of ‘i10´ in 2008, with 50% projected to be overseas sales. So far, the company has got an order to the tune of 31,000 units from overseas since its launch in October.
Meanwhile, the company plans to launch LPG variant of its best-selling hatchback Santro by the end of September.
Saxena said that similar variants of other models like Getz and Accent will be rolled out by the third quarter of the current year. Santro, powered by a 1,086cc engine, is available in CNG, diesel and petrol versions at present.