The Telegraph
Tuesday , February 25 , 2014
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Honda steps on gas

Employees work at the Tapukara plant on Monday. (Reuters)

New Delhi, Feb. 24: Honda Motor today inaugurated a Rs 3,520-crore car manufacturing facility at Tapukara in Rajasthan, with a production capacity of 1.2-lakh vehicles per annum.

The Japanese automobile major had been producing engine components at this plant since 2008.

The development reinforces the company’s efforts to emerge as a major player in the Indian market, which is dominated by rivals Suzuki and Hyundai. This is Honda’s second car-making factory in the country.

Initially, the facility will roll out the Amaze compact sedan. The company will manufacture both the diesel and petrol variants of the Amaze.

According to Hironori Kanayama, president and CEO of Honda Cars India Ltd, the company has around 3,200 employees working in a single shift. An equal number of employees will be either hired or transferred from its Greater Noida facility when the company starts its second shift.

“We will manufacture 60,000 units to begin with and according to demand, will utilise the full capacity of 1.20 lakh units per year. It is at this plant that Honda first began manufacturing diesel parts, which helped us launch Honda’s first diesel engine in the country,” Kanayama said.

Depending on the demand, the company will use the plant to manufacture cars ranging from the small car Brio to the CR-V sports utility vehicle.

The new manufacturing unit will help the company cope with the growing demand for the Amaze. It will reduce the waiting period for the entry-level sedan that has sold around 65,000 units since its launch in April last year.