Tata Motors leaning to Indonesia over Thailand for Nano production
Shelving its expansion plans in Thailand and opting for fast-growing Indonesia, India's Tata Motors is in talks with a leading Indonesian automobile company to produce its popular no-frills Nano car.autos Updated: Jul 11, 2011 21:21 IST
Shelving its expansion plans in Thailand and opting for fast-growing Indonesia, India's Tata Motors is in talks with a leading Indonesian automobile company to produce its popular no-frills Nano car.
Indonesia appears to have gained an edge over Thailand as the production site for the Tata Nano, the world's cheapest car, the Bangkok Post said Monday.
When contacted, a Tata spokesperson in Mumbai told HT, "At this moment, I have no guidance to give."
Tata Motors has been producing its Xenon and Ace light trucks at its factory in Samut Prakanin since 2009.
However, since Indonesia offered more attractive incentives, Tata decided to shelve the expansion plan in Thailand, the paper said, quoting unnamed sources.
The Indian company is now said to be in talks with PT Astra International, Indonesia's leading automobile company.
The source confirmed, however, that Tata would launch a Nano imported from India by the end of this year at the Thailand International Motor Expo to build consumer awareness before the cars are actually built in Indonesia. Deliveries would start early next year.
The Nano to be marketed in Thailand will come with a 600-cc engine, but with enhanced performance and speed. Top speed will be raised to 120 km/h from the 105 km/h of the Indian model. It will also have more features, including power windows and air conditioning, as standard equipment.
Earlier, Tata planned to introduce a premium variant, the Nano Europa, in Thailand, but it felt that model would be more expensive than the Nissan March and Honda Brio.
Tata is expected to produce 50,000 Nanos a year at its plant in Jakarta, starting 2013.
It plans to export the cars to Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines as it is banking on their large populations and big demand for low-cost cars, the paper said.
Rumours have been doing rounds for six months that Tata Motors is looking to set up a Nano manufacturing plant at Jakarta. Tata Motors has a plan in place to take its cars to East Asia, Africa and South America. Sources said that, besides small car Nano, the company might make its Indica and Indigo range of cars too at the strategic off-shore locations.