Companies

Sonalika's International Cars to launch Rs 15-lakh sedan by mid-2012

Roudra Bhattacharya Mumbai | Updated on November 17, 2017

File photo of Sonalika Group Chairman, Mr L.D. Mittal (right), and Managing Director, Mr Deepak Mittal, with the Rhino Rx.

To roll out Rs 8-10 lakh SUV later





International Cars & Motors Ltd (ICML), the passenger vehicle division of the tractor, agri-implement and engine component maker Sonalika Group, is planning to launch its first car by mid-2012.

This will be a sedan priced around Rs 15 lakh and will be powered by an improved version of its two-litre CRDi diesel engine.

The company, which currently makes only a utility vehicle (UV) – the Rhino – is also working on a mid-segment sports utility vehicle priced at Rs 8-10 lakh.

“We are coming up with many new models very shortly,” Mr L.D. Mittal, Chairman, Sonalika Group, told Business Line. “We're developing a world car – a sedan, which is scheduled for launch around middle of next year. This car will promise all the premium features one sees in European luxury sedans, but at half the price. When we launch this new passenger car range, we may also look at unveiling a new brand altogether.”

For the design of the sedan, ICML is working with the famous Italian design house Pininfarina, while other European experts are supporting other areas of product development.

Pininfarina has designed many iconic models for marquees such as Ferrari, Maserati, Rolls-Royce and Jaguar.

Punjab-based ICML's plans for a largely indigenously developed passenger vehicle portfolio mirrors that of Pune-based automaker Force Motors, which is launching its first passenger vehicle — the Force One SUV — this month. This will be part of the second wave of domestic companies aspiring to become a full-scale car manufacturer after Mahindra & Mahindra and Tata Motors.

Incidentally, Sonalika supplies the same diesel engines to General Motors India for the Tavera UV.

In this fiscal, the Rs 4,000-crore (2010-11) group plans to invest Rs 200 crore in adding capacity at home, product development and setting up new assembly units in Eastern Europe and a few African nations.

“We're also negotiations with some private equity funds to raise money. We are looking to raise Rs 800 crore through a 20 per cent stake dilution in Indian Tractors Ltd – our biggest group company. We hope to complete this within a few months,” Mr Mittal said.

>roudra.b@thehindu.co.in

Published on July 08, 2011

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