Ford India sees game changer in EcoSport
Plans to make the country as export hub for the compact SUV and other models Hyderabad: Ford India, which is leaving no stone unturned to create...
Plans to make the country as export hub for the compact SUV and other models Hyderabad: Ford India, which is leaving no stone unturned to create buzz around Ford EcoSport, is counting on the forthcoming compact sports utility vehicle (SUV) as a game changer for it on the lines of Ford Figo, its compact car launched three years ago. "Like Ford Figo, the EcoSport will feature many firsts in the compact SUV segment. It will be a game changer for us in India," Joginder Singh, President and Managing Director, Ford India, told media here on Friday after unveiling the new SUV for public display at Inorbit Mall in the city. Ford India, as a part of the pre-launch exercises, has embarked on EcoSport Urban Discoveries campaign road show, displaying the new compact SUV at shopping malls in 12 cities across the country. The automaker brought the road show to Hyderabad for this weekend. "We strongly believe that a new segment will emerge once we launch the product. There will be high localization in the model, allowing us to price it very competitively," he explained. The automaker plans to open bookings and launch the model in a couple of months after completing the pre-launch campaign. "As part of the campaign, 100 consumers across India will have the opportunity to drive the EcoSport through May, prior to its market launch. The unique initiative has received overwhelming response with over 75,000 registering online ," Singh added. The compact SUV, which will compete against Renault Duster, will be available with three engine choices � two petrol ones and one diesel. Notable among them is 1.0 litre Ecoboost turbocharged engine that powers the entry-level petrol version. Petrol variants will be available both with manual and automatic transmission options, while diesel version comes only with manual setup. "EcoSport will be the first vehicle in the segment to sport a voice-enabled interactive system known as SYNC which Ford has co-developed with Microsoft," he said. According to him, Ford is planning to make India as an export hub for its models. "We are exporting Ford Figo to 38 countries now. EcoSport will also be sold in all those countries and beyond," he added. The production capacity at both its existing plant in Chennai and the upcoming plant near Ahmedabad, which is slated to become operational next year, will be 440,000 per annum. "Nearly 25 per cent of the installed capacity will be exported overseas," he explained. Replying to a query, he said the recent controversial advertisements, which created uproar, would not adversely affect the company's sales.