By March 2011, more than 10 million Maruti cars would have hit the roads in India. The country’s largest car maker will reach a cumulative production milestone of 10 million cars — a first by any Indian carmaker — by the end of financial year 2010-11. Maruti will be 27 by the time it achieves the feat.
Last month, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd became the first car company in India to produce and sell a million cars in a single year. So far, Maruti has sold over 88.1 lakh cars in India.
“We are well on our way to producing over a crore cars by the end of this financial year,” said Inala Veerabhadra Rao, managing executive officer (engineering), Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. “By March we should be able to achieve this target.” Over 70 per cent of the company’s production is accounted for by four brands — M800, Alto, Omni and Wagon R. So far, almost 26 lakh M800, 13 lakh Omni, 8.5 lakh Wagon R and over 15 lakh Alto cars have been produced and sold.
With stricter emission norms already in force in 13 big cities, the company has discontinued sales of the M800 there but is upgrading the other three models to meet the norms.
“The Alto’s existing 800 cc engine has been re-tuned to meet the norms and dispatches began last Friday,” said Rao. “The Wagon R however gets a major facelift with a new K10 series engine on a new platform. The new car will be bigger, more powerful and fuel efficient than the outgoing model.”
Maruti has invested Rs 290 crore for the new Wagon R, against Rs 40-50 crore for normal facelifts. The car will be launched on April 23. With the company aiming at maximising volumes of the new engine series, Alto is also likely to share the K10 engine at a later date. Currently, K series engines come in 1-litre and 1.2-litre sizes.