Volkswagen mulls LCV foray in India, decision by year-end

Volkswagen mulls LCV foray in India, decision by year-end

Paris: German auto major Volkswagen Group says it expects to take a final decision on its plans to enter the Indian light commercial vehicles market by the end of this year, even as it rules out tying up with a local partner for such a venture.

“We, as a big automobile company, constantly keep evaluating possibilities. Emerging markets, including India, are key to our expansion programme not only in cars but also in commercial vehicles," Volkswagen Group Chairman Martin Winterkorn told PTI on the sidelines of Paris Auto Show here.

He said VW group is currently undertaking a feasibility study for its planned foray into the Indian LCV market.

Asked if the group would consider partnership with a local firm for the venture, he replied in the negative.

“No, we do not intend to," Winterkorn said.

VW’s feasibility study is expected to be concluded by this year-end, following which it is expected to take a decision.

“Our people responsible for commercial vehicles at Hannover in Germany are doing the study and depending on the outcome they should be able to decide on the details of the foray, including what kind of products to be brought to India, if they decide to enter the market," VW India Executive Director Finance and CFO Ulrich Proske said.

On the cars front, Winterkorn said VW is developing a family of small cars and one of them could come to India in due course of time.

On the possibility of making India a small-car export hub, he said VW would focus on meeting the needs of the domestic market first.

The company has already announced that it planned to bring two small cars (a compact and a sedan) built on the Polo platform in India by next year, while it is also planning to introduce its compact car ‘Up´ in future.

VW unvieled 12 new global models here from its different group companies, including the Skoda Octavia -- to be launched in India next year.