Rising crude oil prices have brought the focus back on small cars at the 9th Auto Expo beginning in New Delhi on Thursday. Though the focus is on the much-awaited Rs 1 lakh car by Tata Motors, Pune-based Bajaj Auto on Tuesday announced plans to come out with a intra-city car in the next four years.
Ford India Ltd, the Indian arm of the US automobile giant, also announced plans to invest $500 million to launch a small car in India.
Underlining the significance of the Indian market, the auto expo will see the participation of 51 vehicle manufacturers and 1,900 component and accessory manufacturers.
The biggest surprise will be the major presence of Chinese auto component manufacturers. In fact, there will be more component makers participating at the expo than car manufacturers. Chinese motorcycle makers, electric bike companies as well as bus makers like Kinglon will also be there.
The expo will also have the largest-ever overseas participation with country pavilions from Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Spain, Taiwan, the UK and the US. For the first time Tamil Nadu will be setting up a pavilion to woo foreign investors.