It seems to be a season of recalls for the automobile industry with Maruti Suzuki now deciding to call back some 100,000 A-Star cars from the Indian market for a faulty fuel pump.
“In November 2009, we came across an anomaly reported in the fuel tank in some of the vehicles and by December 2009, we started contacting the customers through letters,” the company said in a statement.
“These vehicles belonged to a lot made till Aug 22, 2009 only. In case fuel is filled to the brim, beyond the fuel auto cut off position, a possible fuel leakage from the fuel pump mounting area may take place. No problem has been reported by customers.”
But as a matter of caution, the company said it decided to check all vehicles from the lot and the fuel pump gasket and ring were being replaced for around 100,000 cars including those exported overseas.
Original post credit: IBNLive
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., Hyundai Motor Co. and Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. Thursday reported higher September sales as easing loan rates and the ongoing festival season in India lifted demand for cars and sport-utility vehicles.
Sales at Maruti, the local unit of Suzuki Motor Corp., surged 17% from a year earlier to 83,306 vehicles in September, boosted by higher demand in both local and overseas markets.
Maruti’s local sales grew 11% to 71,594 vehicles while exports surged 85% to 11,712 vehicles.
Demand for automobiles generally rises during the festive season, when it is considered auspicious to buy new products in many parts of India. The two-month season usually begins in October, but started in late September this year.
original post @ WSJ
At 6:46 p.m. Thursday, R. Sampathkumar signed a check for 3,809 rupees ($78) and ordered his first car: a Tata Nano.
Bookings for the ultracheap car, which retails for 100,000 rupees ($2,050) plus tax and transport fees, opened Thursday across India.
Sampathkumar, who is 30 years old and single, makes about 20,000 rupees a month ($410) as a goldsmith and says he wants a Nano for “status.”
“Automatically, women will come forward,” he said, grinning.
Dozens gathered Thursday to gawk at the silver Nano sitting on a red platform with pink satin skirting at the Tata dealership in Coimbatore, a mid-sized manufacturing hub in southern India. Two DJs blasted Backstreet Boys, Ricky Martin and Madonna songs, while college kids snapped photos of the snub-nosed car on their cell phones.
Despite the festivities, analysts say Nano sales won’t do much in the short term to help debt-strapped Tata Motors, which is facing falling sales and is in talks with banks to refinance a $2 billion loan it took out to buy Land Rover and Jaguar from Ford last year.
Originally posted on Yahoo Finance
President Barack Obama last month handed his auto-industry team a seemingly impossible task: to engineer the most complicated industrial restructuring ever attempted by the federal government, and to do it fast.
With almost no experience in the car business, the team’s dozen core members have undergone a crash course in the myriad woes plaguing the U.S. auto industry. Within days, just over a month after setting to work, they’ll begin announcing decisions.
Interviews with task-force members indicate that the administration doesn’t want to let General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC slip into bankruptcy protection, a course advocated by some critics of the industry. Instead, the task force is expected to say that it sees viable futures for both GM and Chrysler, but only if there are sacrifices from their managements, unions and GM’s bondholders. The team will also lay out a firm timeline for action.
Originally posted on WSJ.com
Tata Motors looks set to harness massive demand for its Nano, the world cheapest car, helping it raise funds to cover bridge loans for last year’s purchase of the luxury Jaguar and Land Rover brands.
Interested buyers need to front up most of the cost of the new car in April, potentially giving Tata Motors $1 billion for at least three months and at least $200 million against the delivery of the first 100,000 units – which could take more than a year.
“We are expecting lakhs of applicants, judging from the initial reaction,” said Chairman of top bank State Bank of India (SBI) OP Bhatt.
SBI has a tie-up as a preferred financier for Nano bookings. Tata Motor’s cash needs are pressing. It has $100 million of cash left in its books as of the end of 2008 and is finding it hard to raise Rs 70 billion for working capital.
This article was originally posted IBNLive.com
Daimler AG, the second-largest maker of luxury cars, said the sale of a 9.1 percent stake to an Abu Dhabi investment fund gives it an advantage over rivals that have yet to seek additional cash as automotive markets shrink.
Daimler raised 1.95 billion euros ($2.66 billion) selling new shares to Aabar Investments PJSC. The money will be used to finance fuel-saving technology such as development of battery- powered vehicles, Chief Executive Officer Dieter Zetsche said today at a Stuttgart, Germany, news conference.
The investment buttresses Daimler’s resources as the worst auto-industry crisis in decades forces the maker of Mercedes- Benz cars and trucks to cut hours for 54,000 German assembly- line workers and close two plants in North America. Carmakers need capital as deliveries fall, and Daimler has a “first-mover advantage” in winning Aabar as a shareholder, Zetsche said.
“We are not surprised by the capital increase and indeed expect similar moves” by auto manufacturers across Europe, Adam Jonas, a London-based Morgan Stanley & Co. analyst with an “overweight” recommendation on Daimler, said today in a research report.
This article was originally posted on Bloomberg
Shares of Tata Motors soared as much as eight per cent on the domestic bourses in the morning trade on Monday as the company is scheduled to launch its much-awaited and the world’s least expensive car, Nano, later in the day.
On the Bombay Stock Exchange, Tata Motors opened on a firm note and surged over eight per cent to touch an intra-day high of Rs 173.85.
Similarly, on the National Stock Exchange, the scrip opened at Rs 165 and soon witnessed a rally and jumped 7.76 per cent from its previous close to touch a high of Rs 173.40.
Marketmen said the surge in the counter is largely due to the fact that Nano’s commercial launch would mark a milestone in a journey and the car has the potential to redefine the personal transportation in modern India.
This article was originally posted on IBNLive.com