Friday, 27 December 2013

Maruti Suzuki may start production in Sri Lanka

India’s king of reliability is considering an expansion in its operations by adding facilities in our neighbour down south. Maruti Suzuki has started talks and research to ascertain the viability of setting up a production line in Sri Lanka. The growing demand from African, Middle-Eastern and even South-East Asian markets has seen Maruti setting up larger sales networks.

Currently MSIL has the reputation of being the best particularly in terms of service back-up, reliability, affordable cars and spare parts alike. Sri Lanka has a similar customer base to that of India and Maruti could gain in terms of both sales in the island nation & if all goes to plan, could also turn it into a major export hub.  Discussions are still underway to analyse taxation structures, labour laws and manpower recruitment. Maruti’s expansion is known to not be limited to just urban areas. In the last year their reach has gone from 44000 to 60000 villages and it doesn’t end there. Plans are in full swing to almost double that reach in Q1 2014. Rural sales grew by 18% from the 2nd  quarter of  2013. (With even Lamborghini launching their tractors it’s no wonder that Maruti is tapping this demand)

Maruti Suzuki’s plans to introduce more models could see India & Sri Lanka turning into the primary hubs in south-east Asia. A new plant that is taking shape in Gujarat may be operational by early 2015 along with an R&D centre in Rohtak, Haryana. The existing plant in Manesar, Haryana has already become a primary supplier of models like the Swift to several international markets. Apart from this the auto-maker will also start focusing entirely on affordable commuter vehicles. In what could be called the “My first was a Maruti” philosophy, the company will be focusing on its brand image’s strength and veering away from high end models.

After the Kizashi failed to see a strong reaction (both in India and overseas) the car giant will be producing more cars for the masses. At the moment MSIL offers around 16 different models for sale in India, from which the best-sellers remain well under the Rs 10 lakh price bracket.

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