India buys 10 new SUVs from Japanese manufacturer
By Vishal UpadhyayPublished February 02, 2017 07:21:05The government on Wednesday bought 10 new sedans from Japanese carmaker Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, adding to a wave of purchases of vehicles in India, where a recent government-backed sales campaign has focused on expanding foreign ownership.
The vehicles are part of a new program that will see foreign buyers buy up to 10 new vehicles in the next three years, said an official who declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the deal.
The sales push is part of the government’s drive to build an auto sector that can compete with Chinese and other domestic manufacturers, said Amitabh Chandra, an analyst at brokerage Citi.
The government hopes to boost exports by attracting foreign investment, and with the recent sales campaign, the government is betting on that.
A Mitsubishis sedan can sell for about $40,000, which translates into about $1,800 to $2,500 per vehicle.
It has been sold for about 10 years.
The Mitsubashis new vehicle will have a powertrain that Mitsuboshis has used in the last two models, and will be powered by a 1.8-liter turbocharged engine, a Japanese supplier said.
Mitsubishi has been buying SUVs in India for more than 30 years, and the country has a growing domestic market for SUVs.
In 2015, India’s sales rose by 17.6% to 3.7 billion units, the biggest leap in the world, according to a Bloomberg survey of market research firms.
India’s government, which has been trying to boost its foreign-exchange reserves, has been selling more than half its foreign currency reserves since March 2016, to $3.1 trillion.
The International Monetary Fund estimates India will need to raise $6.4 trillion to meet its debt obligations by 2019.