Isuzu expecting sales in India to grow around 60 pct this year
The company has already started manufacturing engines from the plant in Andhra Pradesh, Takashima added.
Japanese automobile maker Isuzu expects its sales in India to grow around 60 percent this year riding on strong demand for pickup trucks in smaller cities and towns, according to a senior company official.
"In the short time that we have been present in India, we have been able to make gradual progress. Last year we doubled our sales to around 5,000 units. This year we are expecting a 60 percent growth over it," Isuzu Motors India Deputy Managing Director and Executive Vice-President Ken Takashima told PTI.
Isuzu manufactures and sales pick-ups (passenger and commercial variants) and SUV here in the country. Its plant in Andhra Pradesh, which has an initial capacity of 50,000 units, became operational in April 2016.
When asked about the growth drivers, he said, "We are seeing an equal demand for both commercial and passenger variants."
In the last five years since its entry in India, Isuzu has sold a total of 10,000 vehicles in the country.
At present, the company has 35 outlets in different cities across India.
"Our intention is to strengthen service network as well so that we develop a long-standing relationship with our customers," Takashima said.
Commenting on the company's plans for exports from India, he said, "Right now, Isuzu's main plant in Thailand takes care of exports to most of the markets globally. What we are looking at is neighboring countries like Nepal and Bhutan, which we have started in a small way."
Moreover, he said, the company would consider countries like South Africa or markets in the Middle East, mostly the regions which are not served by the Thailand plant.
"We have around 100 vendors in India now and we have reached up to 70 percent localization in our single-cab pick-up. We intend to increase it further," he said.
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