Renault-Bajaj plan 2,500-dollar car for India: report

4th May 2010, Comments 0 comments

A low-cost Indian car made by domestic vehicle maker Bajaj Auto and Renault will cost 2,500 dollars, about the same price as the Tata Nano, now the world's cheapest model, a report said Tuesday.

Bajaj Auto managing director Rajiv Bajaj said his firm had agreed that the car being developed with Renault and its Japanese alliance partner Nissan would sell for 2,500 dollars (110,000 rupees), the Indian Express newspaper said.

The snub-nosed hatchback Nano, produced by leading Indian vehicle maker Tata Motors, is available in a price range of 123,000 to 172,000 rupees, depending on accessories.

The new Bajaj-Renault model was due to hit the market this year but the launch has been postponed to 2012.

The design, engineering, sourcing and manufacturing of the unnamed new model will be handled by Bajaj Auto, India's leading motorbike and rickshaw maker, while the marketing and selling will be done by the Renault-Nissan alliance.

French automaker Renault has teamed up with Bajaj to produce the car, which would challenge the Nano as automakers worldwide try to tap into India's fast-growing car market.

The Indian car market -- forecast to triple to six million cars annually from two million in a decade -- is fast turning into a global battleground, especially in the small vehicle segment, as automakers seek new growth regions.

Late last year Renault president Carlos Ghosne said the cost of the car would be "amazing" and "lower than any car today made in India" when taking into account fuel and other running expenses.

© 2010 AFP

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