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Maruti eyes 150% rise in exports

New Delhi, Sept. 26: Powered by the success of the new Suzuki Alto in Europe launched in March this year, Maruti Udyog has targeted a 150 per cent increase in total exports during this year.

The company plans to export over 31,000 vehicles during 2002-03, compared with 12,232 vehicles in the previous year and 15,000 units exported during 2000-01. Maruti officials attributed political problems in the global markets as the reasons for the drop in sales during 2000-01.

During 2002-03, the company aims to export 24,000 Altos, with the Maruti 800, Zen, Omni, Gypsy making up the remaining 7,000. During 2001-02, the company had exported 6,000 units of the Zen, 3,000 of the M-800 and the remaining 3,000 were divided among Alto, Omni, and Gypsy.

Maruti has also enhanced its export target Alto to 24,000 units in 2002-03 following the enthusiastic response to the model in European markets. The company’s cumulative export sales crossed the 2.5 lakh mark with more than 70 per cent of these vehicles being exported to Europe.

The Maruti Suzuki Alto, sold as Alto 1.1 in India, was launched in Europe at the Geneva Motor Show in March and is manufactured at Maruti’s facility in Gurgaon. Based on the initial discussions with distributors, Maruti had planned to export 14,000 units of the Alto. It was introduced in Germany, Netherlands, Finland, Greece, Austria, Ireland and the UK.

“Maruti has decided to increase its export targets as orders from these countries swell with increasing popularity,” said a company spokesperson.

After a successful launch in these countries, more European markets are likely to be added to the list by the end of the year, a company spokesperson said.

The company claimed it was the largest exporter of completely built cars (CBU) in the country during 2001-02, both in terms of volumes and value. The company has an international presence that spans over 70 countries across the globe.

Maruti products, including Maruti 800, Omni, Zen, Alto and Gypsy, were exported to nearly 40 countries last fiscal. Significantly, cumulative exports of the Zen crossed one lakh units in December 2001.

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