Land Rover is an iconic brand in Europe, specifically in the UK – And now this brand will sport a tag of “Made in India,” according to a report in TOI. Tata Motors has done wonders to the sagging fortunes of Land Rover & Jaguar brands after it acquired the company in June 2008 from US carmaker Ford, in the midst of the recession.
This is significant news for Indian automobile market and we might very well get to see the newer models of Land Rover such as Freelander 2, at a lower price range. The truck major Tata Motors is expected to assemble the new cheaper model through the completely knocked-down route in India.
The said new launches of the locally assembled models from the company’s Pimpri facility near Pune are expected to be rolled-out by July 2011.
As per the data, the company has sold 242 units of imported JLR models in India since June last year.
JLR already has three showrooms in India. The demand for the premium Jaguar and Land Rover models is said to have high potential in India with rising affluent class working group people. For the early part of the FY 2009-10, many of the markets in which JLR operates experienced a negative GDP growth on the back of lack of demand due to severe global recession.
These JLR steps of having an assembly plant outside UK to increase its sourcing from low-cost countries is expectedly triggered on account of reducing input costs and make them competitive in the fast emerging Indian market.
The Freelander 2, which is currently produced at Halewood in North England, arrives in the country as fully-built unit attracts over 100% duty, while the same, if assembled in India could bring down duties to 50%.
Tata Motors in this case will pass on the cost benefit to consumers (hopefully). Currently the lowest-priced Land Rover model in India, carries an ex-showroom tag of Rs.33.5 lakh in Delhi and 33.3 lakh in Mumbai.
One thing that needs to be seen, if this model works successfully – Whether Tata Motors will reduce their workforce / plants in U.K and move production to India. That surely wouldn’t go down too well with Britishers !