Nissan to make diesel engines in India

November 17th, 2011 - 9:35 pm ICT by IANS  

State Bank of India Chennai, Nov 17 (IANS) Japanese automobile major Nissan Motor Company will start making diesel engines in India next year in its effort to increase the local content of its cars made here, said a senior official of its Indian subsidiary.

“We plan to make diesel engines at our plant here so that the level of localisation of all our vehicles goes up to 80 percent. The investment in the diesel plant will be part of our overall investment of around Rs.4,500 crore,” Sunil Rekhi, chief finance officer at Nissan Motor India Pvt Ltd, told reporters here Thursday.

Nissan Motor, along with its global alliance partner and French auto company Renault, has set up a 200,000 units per annum vehicle manufacturing facility under the company Renault Nissan Alliance India Pvt Ltd at Oragadam near here.

The car manufacturing company started manufacturing petrol engines in May 2010. The plant makes 1.2 litre and 1.5 litre petrol engines.

Currently the plant rolls out Micra and Sunny models for Nissan.

According to Rekhi, the plant’s production line is flexible to make petrol and diesel engines and there will not be any major additional investment. Exports of diesel engines may be considered in the future, he said.

Though the investment of Rs.4,500 crore was planned to be made over period of seven years, the company would be completing that much before that timeline, Rekhi said.

He said Nissan hopes to close this fiscal achieving 80 percent of its targeted number of 40,000 units and plans to double the current year’s number the next fiscal.

“We will be launching diesel variant of our Sunny model early next year and also increase our dealerships to 70 by the end of this fiscal from the current 44 units,” Rekhi said.

Earlier Nissan Motor India announced its tie-up with public sector bank State Bank of India (SBI) to finance prospective purchases of its car models.

According to Rajeev Nandan Mehra, chief general manager (Personal Banking), the SBI is the second largest auto financing bank in the country and offers cheapest car loans in the country.

SBI offers auto loans to Nissan car buyers at 11.25 percent (floating) and 11.75 percent (fixed).

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