latest addition to the Tata passenger vehicle range, the Aria, at the 2013 Johannesburg International Motor Show, Slym had said that the current range of four passenger vehicles in South Africa would be increased to six in a few months.
“We have chosen a few focus markets, of which South Africa is one where we can strategically focus efforts, where we can expand this great export capability... We export to 160 countries, but I do feel that we have not given enough attention to a market such as South Africa, so we want to step up our business in South African terms of Tata’s new Horizonext principles,” Slym had said.
Last year, Tata Motors sold a total of 6 lakh units out of which 50,000 were in export markets.
When asked about Nano, Slym said the car is in the middle of an image makeover to rectify past mistakes in its positioning. “We have made some major changes to the vehicle in terms of interiors, we have done thousands of surveys to make sure to know what people would like to see in a Nano,” he said, adding sales have already started picking up.
“Our (Nano) sales when it reached the lowest in middle of the year was about 1000, last month they were 3,500 so we are already seeing an uptake because we brought the right things to the market,” the managing director said.
When asked if a diesel Nano would hit the market,
he said “there is obviously a Nano diesel in the pipeline” but did not share timeline for its launch.
He said the Sanand plant in Gujarat is capable of manufacturing more that 3,500 cars a month but that the company is not currently making cars which it cannot sell.
On the new product launches for the domestic market, he said Tata Motors will play in those segments which are growing, such as small car segment which will remain important in India. “Sport utility vehicles (SUVs) are bifurcated into real SUVs or soft roaders. We don’t have anything in the soft roader segment which is fast growing. It is important and