The Nano effect seems to have shaken the US car giant General Motors, which has charted a new strategy with its Chinese partner to manufacture an ultra-low-cost-car. This car will be pitted against the Indian Tata Nano in emerging markets across the world particularly in South East Asia and African countries.
GM holds a minority stake in the Chinese-owned SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Company which manufactures small cars and mini vehicles. The company has not specified the date of the car launch or the time required for developing the car.
GM China representative, Rob Leggat said that they are already producing a $3500 car for the Chinese market and that GM can come up with a cheaper vehicle if needed. GM also has a strong presence in Latin America and Asia Pacific regions. The company plans to tap these markets after launching the ultra cheap car.
The emergence of the small car has opened a new market for car companies, who till now considered the production of an ultra-low-cost-car as financially unfeasible. They had even criticized the Nano as lacking in safety and emission standards. However, the unveiling of the Nano has spurred many car manufacturers to consider making ultra-cheap small cars. Some of the earliest who took keen interest in such projects were Bajaj and Nissan-Renault. A rumour of the Maruti Suzuki also trying to make a car costing lower than the Maruti 800 was recently disproved in an official statement by the company.