Monthly Archives January 2008

Foundation stone laid for Ceat’s new radial tyre plant at Halol

The foundation stone for Ceat’s Rs 700 crore radial tyre plant at Halol (about 40km from Baroda) was laid today by the Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi. Also present at the function were RPG Enterprises chairman, Harsh Goenka, and Ceat’s Managing Director, Paras K Chowdhary

This plant, a greenfield project, will provide employment to over 1,000 people in the first phase of operations, which is 2009-2010. The first tyre from the plant will roll out by May 2010. The Ceat radial tyre plant will be spread across 125 acres of land and is expected to manufacture four million tyres in phase 1. Subsequently, the capacity will be increased to 12 million in the next 10 years.

The investment of Rs 700 crore from Ceat will be made in two phases – in the first phase (2009-2010), Rs 50...

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Honda Insight Hybrid: More details revealed

The all-new Honda Insight Hybrid. For the first time ever, the Toyota Prius is going to have some serious competition to deal with…!

Honda has released more details on the Insight Hybrid, a five-door family hatchback that looks all set to take on the Toyota Prius on its own turf. Fitted with Honda’s petrol-electric Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) system, the Insight is supposed to be one of the most affordable hybrids on the market, with low emissions and great fuel economy in real world driving conditions.

The Honda Insight 1.3 IMA SE also proves that hybrids don’t have to be dull. With 87bhp from its 1...

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GM loses no.1 crown to Toyota, but continues to do well in emerging markets

General Motors, which saw an 11% decline in its total sales worldwide in 2008 and which has now lost the ‘no.1 car maker’ position to Toyota, actually witnessed a 9% increase in sales in the Indian market last year.

Even as its US operations struggle to survive, GM is doing reasonably well in countries like Brazil, Russia, India and China. In 2008, GM’s sales increased by 10% in Brazil, by 30% in Russia, by 9% in India and by 6% in China. That was still not enough, though, to stop GM from sliding to the no.2 position – the company sold 8.36 million vehicles worldwide in 2008, while Toyota managed to sell 8.97 million vehicles during the same period.

In the meanwhile, General Motors India (GMI) has a few new car launches lined up for this year, including a brand-new small h...

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Ford India appoints Suneil Shetty as brand ambassador for Endeavour SUV, hikes prices of all its cars

Ford Endeavour
The Ford Endeavour is now more expensive by Rs 25,000

Ford India has announced the appointment of Hindi film actor Suneil Shetty as the brand ambassador for the Ford Endeavour SUV. ‘Cars have always ranked high on my priority list and the Ford Endeavour is a dream come true for any car buff looking for a true blue SUV,’ says Shetty.

In order to pay Mr Shetty for his services, Ford India has also hiked priced of all its cars, except the Ikon. Er… no, we’re just kidding. Ford has raised prices of its cars in order to offset the increase in import costs and increases in the prices of locally sourced components.

The Ford Fiesta will be now be more expensive by Rs 5,000-10,000 (depending on the variant), the Fusion’s prices have been increased by Rs 15,000 and the Endeavou...

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Bajaj Auto plans to cover both ends of the motorcycle market spectrum in India

Bajaj Auto is looking at launching new entry-level bikes as well as higher-end sports-oriented bikes in a bid to have both ends of the market covered. The Pune-based two-wheeler manufacturer plans to launch a new range of low-cost, entry-level bikes which would not be branded as ‘Bajaj’ machines. Instead, the company will develop a new brand name for these low cost bikes.

This new range of low-cost bikes will, in all likelihood, be developed with inexpensive components sourced from China. With engines of 100-150cc and Chinese-built components, these bikes will also benefit from the ‘Nano effect,’ which is in-house engineering developments geared towards keeping costs low.

Expect to see the Kawasaki Ninja 250R in India by mid-2009

While the low-cost bikes are one end of the spect...

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