Honda to increase output of cars at Tapukara plant

PTI Posted online: Sunday, Jun 01, 2014 at 0000 hrs
Tapukara (Rajasthan) : Japanese car giant Honda Motor Company will increase output from its plant here by starting a second production shift in seven to eight months to help meet its target of an almost 50 per cent jump in sales to 2 lakh units in 2014-15.

The company's wholly owned Indian subsidiary, Honda Cars India Ltd, may also consider ramping up the capacity of the Tapukara plant in the next two-three years as it targets sales of 3 lakh units a year by 2016-17.

"Currently we are producing our cars in only one shift at Tapukara. With growing demand for our cars, we will go for full capacity of the plant in the last three-four months of this fiscal," Honda Cars India Senior Vice President and Director (Sales and Marketing) Shigeru Yamazaki told PTI here.

Honda currently rolls out 60,000 units a year in one shift from the 450-acre Tapukara facility. The total installed capacity of the plant is 1.2 lakh units in two shifts.

The company will launch its seven-seater multi-purpose vehicle Mobilio in July in both petrol and diesel options and the new generation of its premium hatchback Jazz in this financial year.

"After launching the Amaze last year and the recent introduction of the new City, our sales are growing despite a tough market condition...Depending on availability of components and demand, the company is capable of producing 2 lakh units in this fiscal," Yamazaki said.

Asked about production and sales targets for this year, he said: "We are capable of producing 2 lakh units."

In 2013-14, Honda's sales increased 83 per cent to 1,34,339 units.

Honda had announced a sales target of 3 lakh units in India by FY17 as part of its aim to sell 60 lakh vehicles globally in the same period.

Honda also has a facility at Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh, which can produce 1.2 lakh cars every year.

Asked how it would produce 3 lakh cars from the two facilities in the next three years, Honda Cars Senior Vice President (Manufacturing) and Plant Head Rajeev Wasan said: "We will have to ramp up the capacity by FY17. Both the plants can have excess capacity by various measures like overtime and adding a third shift.

"However, Tapukara plant has excess land to increase production in future. So whatever major additional capacity we will require, most probably it will come at the Tapukara facility."

He, however, said no decision has been taken yet on expanding output.

Honda Cars has invested Rs 3,526 crore on the Tapukara plant, which also makes engines and exports components to South East Asia, the UK and Latin America.