New Delhi: Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) on Thursday said it will start exports of its two models, Etios and Etios Liva, to South Africa by March next year, marking the company’s foray into export market.

“The export model of Etios will be built on the same platform as Etios and Etios Liva, manufactured and sold in India," the company said in a statement, adding that some technical changes, pertaining to the local requirements, will be made. It added that the company will export only the petrol variants of the Etios.

A file photo of Toyota top brass at the launch of Etios

To meet the export demand, TKM is ramping up the capacity of the plant to 1,20,000 units by 2012 from today’s levels of 80,000 units. By 2013, the company aims to ramp it up further to 2,10,000 units.

“Exporting the Etios to South Africa would also mean showcasing the advanced technology and superior quality features that have been developed by Toyota for Etios. We are convinced that the Etios will be successful in delivering Toyota’s promise of quality in South Africa too," TKM’s managing director (MD) Hiroshi Nakagawa said.

Company’s deputy MD (commercial), Shekar Viswanathan, said that the start of exports by TKM denotes its growing role in Toyota’s global operations. “We see a big opportunity in this sector as exports have considerably grown when compared to last year. TKM’s foray into the export market promises a lot of growth for the company," he said.

According to the company statement, the engine and transmission for the Etios sold in India and export markets will be manufactured at Toyota Kirloskar Auto Parts.

Approximately 100,000 engines will be produced per year starting in the third quarter of 2012 and approximately 240,000 transmissions per year starting in early 2013 to meet the growing demand, the statement said.

TKM currently imports the engines and transmissions from Japan.