Renault’s small car Twizy has India inputs

Indian design houses are playing a crucial role in the development of new automobiles many of which are for markets overseas.

Renault’s small car Twizy, which is “neither a two-wheeler nor a four wheeler, but seats two and has four wheels,” was partly developed with India design teams.

“This electric vehicle may not even be considered for India, but Indian design teams have contributed significantly to its design,” according to Mr Len Curran, Vice-President of French carmaker Renault in India.

Mr Curran said the Mumbai design house worked also on the Twingo and the Duster that was unveiled recently. Some of these cars may not come to India, but the role of design houses is vital for the overall car development. The Duster has been re-designed by the local teams. The company is also relying on the design teams here for its small car.

PLATFORMS

The other important contribution of the designers here has been the ability to quickly adapt the existing platform for other models. Therefore, the Renault platform, used by other manufacturers, gets design inputs here.

Mr I.V. Rao, Managing Executive Director, Engineering, Maruti Suzuki, told Business Line: “Indian designers have been working with global teams on new cars. Several cars from the Maruti stable have been designed with engineers here. Maruti is working on a global car developed out of India.”

The other important aspect is the use of the same platform to develop different models. “We did this with the old Swift platform on which we had Ritz and Old Swift Dzire. The new Swift platform is being used for Swift/Dzire and Ertiga MPV,” he explained.

The R&D centre of Korean carmaker Hyundai in Hyderabad has played a significant role in development of the small car Eon, now in the market.

Mr P. Balendran, Vice-President, General Motors India, said the Indian R&D centre in Bangalore has played a vital role in bringing about changes and localisation of the Cruze and the Tavera. The mandate of the design team is increasing. One day we may see a fully India designed car for global operations.

vrishi@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on July 10, 2012)
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