Nissan on Monday said it has started commercial production of small car ‘Micra’ from its plant in Chennai.
Nissan Motor India will start selling the car from July and bookings open tomorrow. The first shipment will begin from September, 2010.
“The start of commercial production of Nissan Micra is the beginning of a new chapter for us in India. In an exponentially growing and challenging Indian automobile industry, we are introducing a product that has been specifically designed keeping in mind the discerning consumer needs of India,” Nissan Motor Company Chief Operating Officer Toshiyuki Shiga said. The India-made Micra will be exported to strategic markets like Europe, the Middle East and Africa as part of its plans to sell the car in over 100 countries.
In March, Renault-Nissan inaugurated its manufacturing plant at Oragadam near Chennai in which the two partners will together invest Rs 4,500 crore to produce four lakh units by 2015. “We always had a clear strategy for India and this has been clearly reflected in our investments in the first manufacturing plant for the alliance in Chennai,” Nissan Motor India Managing Director and CEO Kiminobu Tokuyama said.
Nissan will display the new car from tomorrow in its showrooms across India. Bookings will begin against an initial amount of Rs 50,000. To boost sales, Nissan will aggressively market the car and it will be supported by a comprehensive print, digital, radio and TV campaign shortly.
Renault-Nissan has made an initial investment of Rs 2,900 crore for production of 200,000 units annually, which can be scaled up to 400,000 units. 80,000 units may be produced in the first year. Pitted against Maruti’s Swift, Hyundai’s i10 and i20, the Micra will come with a 1.2-litre petrol engine and will have 85 per cent localization in components. The car was designed on the new ‘V' platform.
The new Micra will be produced in Thailand, India, China and Mexico. A fifth location is yet to be decided.