Kia Motors set to enter India in the next two or three years; targets affordable entry-level and subcompact segments
The South Korean automaker, Kia Motors, is all set to enter Indian market soon according to a report from ET Auto. Rumours emerged in January 2015 that Kia is looking to set up a manufacturing facility locally to rightfully bring down the production cost and supply the market with affordable small cars in the ever booming entry-level segment.
This was said to offset the downtrodden growth in sales encountered at Russia and China and our domestic market offering plentiful opportunities with local manufacturing. Kia Motors has grown tremendously in recent years especially in the European space with its hatchback models and there’s no better time to enter such a vast country like India with so much untapped potential.
Kia’s product line-up currently has a successfully-running Cee’d hatchback, Optima sedan, compact SUV called Sportage, Rio and Picanto small cars, Soul crossover, etc. The aforementioned hatchbacks could play a key role in the brand’s interest in venturing into the Indian market. India has been projected to be the third-biggest car market worldwide by 2020 and for a brand that has widespread audience globally, it only makes sense to invest heavily. Moreover, Kia Motors is a subsidiary of the Hyundai Motor Co, which is the largest exporter of passenger cars in the country.
The South Korean company will be a standalone brand when it enters the Indian market and it’s speculated to be already looking at potential models and suppliers whilst seeking a suitable premise to set up a production facility. Tada in Andhra Pradesh could be the most viable option as it’s close to Hyundai’s base in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu.
Hyundai might utilise the production base for some of its own future models as well as the Chennai factory is running on its full potential already says the report. With Kia completing the feasibility study, it’s believed that the cars will be rolled out in the next two or three years’ time with localising of parts and honing the global models to suit India consuming the majority of that time period.
There will be obvious similarities in the raw material procurement and supplying of parts but both the brands will compete against each other as separate outfits to deliver the optimum outcome. As Toyota could be planning to introduce new small cars designed and developed by Daihatsu under its own batch and Lexus more likely to debut this year, the Indian market will see so many fresh new faces in the upcoming years.
Source: ET Auto