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 at Chennai on 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.