BMW India initiates localisation of all vehicles to 50 per cent

Thursday, Apr 30, 2015

Luxury car major BMW India has increased localisation in its vehicles to 50 per cent, which is in keeping with the Make-in-India programme, a top company official said today.

"The higher localisation has enabled us to address challenges like inflation in emerging markets such as India," BMW Group India President, Philipp Von Sahr, told reporters here. He was replying to a specific query on the company's contribution to Make-in-India programme.

Sahr said BMW has localised production of engines and gearboxes at its Chennai plant with a capacity to produce 14,000 vehicles per year and added that about 95 per cent of cars sold in India are produced in Chennai.

BMW currently assembles eight models from its Chennai plant, including the flagship 7, 5 and 3 series sedans, he said, adding that the capacity utilisation, at about 60-70 per cent, could go up in future in line with the demand.

Asked about year-on-year growth, Sahr said the group believes in long-term growth of Indian market. "India is one of the few bright spots in the global economy and the demand for luxury cars is quite good. There are not many markets where growth is still good. The market is growing here. We expect growth here for the next 10 years," he said.

He also outlined a plan to launch 15 models this year and expand the group's presence in tier-2 locations. "We will bring the M series here. We will launch both entry-level models as well as high-end ones", Sahr said.

On the proposed TVS-BMW motorcycle, he said it will be rolled out next year. The dealer network will be increased to 50 by this year, with focus on tier-2 markets, Sahr added, who was here to inaugurate KUN Exclusive, BMW' s first dealership in the city and second in Tamil Nadu.

On higher market share, he said BMW is not merely looking at volumes, but focusing on profitable growth.

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