Rover Plans No Launch In India

New Delhi, March 24 | Updated: Mar 25 2004, 05:30am hrs
British automaker MG Rover, which sells Tata Motors compact car Indica in the UK, has no plans to launch its vehicles in the Indian market because of high import tariffs.

MG Rover, part of Phoenix Venture Holdings of UK, had signed several agreements with Tata Motors which included the launch of its brands in the Indian market, besides selling Tata Motors vehicles in the UK and Europe.

Another MG Rover group company, XParts which deals in part sales, will start sourcing spares to provide after-sales support to the City Rover from Tata Motors as part of the agreement inked earlier, MG Rover corporate-head product development Michael J Booth told newspersons here, after signing a technical agreement with International Cars and Motors Ltd (ICML), a Sonalika group company.

City Rover had been well-received in the UK market and 3,000 vehicles had been registered since its launch in November last year, he added.

MG Rover will start selling the cars in countries such as Italy, Spain, Germany, France and Belgium, and plans to import 100,000 units in 5 years as per its agreement with Tata Motors.

He said the company was looking at signing similar agreements with small and medium auto companies, like the one it had inked with with ICML.

The response has been fairly encouraging for us. We are open to market other Tata vehicles and similar agreements, Mr Booth said.

We are taking the car to more European countries, but production is a constraint now, he said, adding the initial one lakh units target could be increased once the supply constraint got removed.

We are flexible in terms of the one-lakh units agreement, he said, as such agreements are based on market performance always.

In some of the European countries, Tata Motors also sells Indica directly under its own badge.