Ford Motor Co on Wednesday unveiled its new global sports utility vehicle (SUV) EcoSport and said it will invest $142 million (about Rs 784 crore) in its Chennai plant to facilitate manufacturing of the model for the domestic and export markets.
"The EcoSport is the second of eight new global models that Ford plans to launch in India by the mid of this decade. We are packaging together new engine technology, quality and safety aimed at attracting a new generation of consumers in India and other global markets," Alan Mulally, president and chief executive officer (CEO), Ford Motor Company, said. The company had launched New Ford Fiesta as its first global product portfolio for India.
"Asia-Pacific in general and India in particular are very important markets for us. The global market is still robust and we expect about five per cent growth consecutively in the next two years. The Asia-Pacific market has slowed down a little bit but there is tremendous growth potential," Mulally added.
The company said that it was just a preview of the car ahead of the Auto Expo and the company's wholly-owned arm, Ford India, will roll out the product in the market later this year.
The EcoSport is based on the B-segment Fiesta platform. While the company has not disclosed the details of the product, saying it will be shared at the time of market launch, it said the EcoSport will be powered by a one-litre EcoBoost engine that has power of 120 HP and emits less than 140 gr/km of CO2, which brings it on par with rivals' conventional 1.6-litre petrol engines, the company said.
According to Michael Boneha, president and managing director, Ford India, "We are investing $142 million in Chennai to produce that vehicle. This is part of our strategy to increasing our worldwide sales by nearly 50 per cent to take our annual global sales to eight million vehicles by 2015."
Boneha added that of this figure, 60 to 70 per cent sales are expected to come from the Asia-Pacific and Africa region. The all-new EcoSport will make its global debut in India and will be sold in 100 markets around the world.
"The vehicle will expand Ford's presence in Brazil, India, ASEAN markets and others to be announced at a later time, with world-class technology and quality, sharing the new B-class platform which is expected to sell more than two million units by mid-decade," the company later said in a statement.
Courtesy: Mail Today