Hyundai Launches New-look Santro In Five Variants

New Delhi, May 22: | Updated: May 23 2003, 05:30am hrs
Hyundai Motor India unveiled a completely new-look Santro range priced between Rs 3.29 lakh to Rs 4.30 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). The launch of Santro Xing in five variants featuring totally new front and rear design marks the phase out of the existing Santro Zip Plus range.

The company also announced fresh investments of Rs 1,000 crore to ramp up manufacturing capacity to 2.5 lakh units over the next 15 months.

After Suzuki Motor announced plans to make Maruti Udyog an export hub, Hyundais parent has also decided to make its Indian subsidiary a global base for compact cars.

The company plans to sell around 10,000 units per month as against around 7,000 units sold at present, which will give it a substantial lead in the B- segment over the Indica, Zen and Wagon R.

Domestic sales are expected to touch 150,000 units this year, up from 113,000 units.

Hyundai Motor Corp will stop production of small cars, and HMIL will manufacture them for Korea and other export markets, Hyundai Motor India executive director (marketing and sales) BG Lee said.

We will be investing Rs 1,000 crore in the next 14-15 months to increase production capacity from 1.5 lakh units to 2.5 lakh. We will also clock a 12 per increase over last years turnover of Rs 4,060 crore, companys president BVR Subbu said.

The Santro Xing comes in five versions, including automatic transmission, and has a new sporty exterior with safety features which meet European standards.

Asked whether HMIL would discontinue the existing versions of Santro, Mr Subbu said that (phasing out) entirely depends on consumer preference.

The company expects to clock about 40 per cent sales rise to 1.5 lakh units in 2003, he said, adding of which 30,000 units will be exported.

The compnay president said the company will introduce sports utility vehicle Terracan in July, which would be priced at par with a top-end SUV like Pajero, while the next offering from the HMIL stable would be the 1300cc Getz next year.

Mr Subbu said the market survey for the car had already been completed while the feasibility report would be over by August this year.

We are looking at exports of around 30 per cent of total production, most of which will be to Europe, Mr Lee said.

To handle the enlarged product portfolio and to meet customer satisfaction, HMIL will establish 1,000 service points this year from 335 now, he said.

Hyundai Motor India will approach the Foreign Investment Promotion Board to to get an approval on launching its sister company, Kia Motors models in the country.

Our proposal was rejected earlier, and we will again go to the FIPB,Hyundai Motor India president BVR Subbu said.