MG Motor plans second India unit, may launch affordable EV shortly

MG Motor's first model in India, the Hector, has already crossed 50,000 units
In the backdrop of the growing demand for its cars in the country and to manufacture newer models, MG Motor is planning to ramp its capacity and set up a second facility in India. The future launches including a possible affordable electric car for the Indian market.

The brand is planning to make its full-size SUV MG Gloster available in the market by Diwali 2020. The vehicle is likely to be in the Rs 40-50 lakh proce bracket. The company will have four products in the market in one-and-a-half years of its operations in India. It is planning another SUV as the fifth product in 2021 and would require a new plant to cater to the market after that. 

MG Motor's Halol plant in Gujarat, previously owned by General Motors India Pvt Ltd, can produce around 80,000-100,000 units. The company ramped up production from 3,000 Hector vehicles a month to 3,500 and now looking to expand to 4,000 per month, said Gaurav Gupta, Chief Commercial Officer, MG Motor India. The waiting period for the Hector, the company's first model in India, has come down to 3-4 months from six earlier. The production ramp up is likely to bring it down further. 

On the impact of the coronavirus, Gupta said production in the month of February has been affected and the company isn't able to ramp up production as planned. If supplies don't open up, then production in March will be impact as well, said Gupta, without disclosing the extent.

MG Motor's first model in India, the Hector, has already crossed 50,000 units. The company claims it is India’s first internet car and that it has emerged as the segment leader in the C-SUV segment with nearly 20,000 units sold since its launch in India last year.

The proposed second plant, which can even come up in South India, will have a higher capacity than the one at Halol, as the company is looking at launching new products, including electric vehicles and batteries, Gupta said.

He did not disclose investments numbers for the proposed facility. MG Motor had committed about Rs 5,000 crore for Halol and so far invested around Rs 2,000 crore. The rest will be invested in the coming months.

MG has showcased a sedan, a hatchback, and MPVs, so the future line up can be from these segments, said Gupta.

"We are excited about electric vehicles, as the EV revolution in India is likely to happen faster than what we expected," he added.

The company has launched ZS EV, touted to be first electric internet SUV in India. While the product is in the Completely Knocked Down (CKD) format, going forward MG Motor is planning to manufacture it in India, at earmark a part of the plant for battery manufacturing.

MG expects greater policy support to make electric vehicles in India and set up charging infrastructure. Today, according to Gupta, Fame-II supports more commercial usage of electric vehicles.

MG continues to build on this momentum by opening brand outlets closer to prospective customers in tier-I and II cities. The firm plans to expand its footprint to 300 such cities this year from 200 currently.



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