Ford CEO Alan Mulally said he expects to see an increase in vehicle exports from India, as the automaker plans to manufacture more vehicles on global platforms to reduce costs and increase production.
Mulally is currently on a visit to Chennai, India, before the launch of the Ford EcoSport compact crossover, which will be exported to India from Europe. The model is expected to hit the market later this year. This year the US automaker plans to build more than 85% of its vehicles on 9 global platforms.
The gloom economy in India, increasing fuel costs and high interest rates have all drastically affected demand for vehicles in a market where automakers have expected a booming growth.
“The economy is not doing well … giving negative signals to consumers,” said Sugato Sen, senior director at the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), which compiles the sales data. “Car purchase is always a discretionary purchase, I can always postpone it. That is what is happening.”
The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers expects sales to increase between 3% and 5% this financial year ending March 2014. In April automakers sold 150,789 units in India, a decrease of 10.4% from April 2012.