The country’s largest automaker Maruti Suzuki, will make a second round of investment - Rs 1,900 crore in next two years i.e. March 2019, to strengthen its research and development centre in Rohtak. The fresh round of investment will help with faster product development as well as expand infrastructure for evaluating vehicle safety. Prior to this, the Indian automaker has invested around Rs 1,900 crore in the first phase.
Speaking about plans, C V Raman, MSI Executive Director R&D said, “In the second phase we will have facilities dedicated for transmissions, engines, emissions controls among others. These will come up at the centre over the next few years.” The centre is spread across 600 acres and will help the company in complying with the new safety regulations that is likely to come in October this year. Among the current lot the Ignis, S-Cross, Ciaz, Baleno and the Ertiga confirm to safety norms in terms of full frontal impact, offset frontal impact and pedestrian protection. In order to comply with the safety, each of the five models have undergone 35-40 test at the Rohtak centre during design and development over 3-4 years.
The Vitara Brezza from Maruti Suzuki which had instantly shot to fame since its launch last year was designed and developed in India and came into production form due to the Rohtak facility. Moving forward, Maruti Suzuki believes that 75-80 per cent of cars in its portfolio would become compliant to these norms, about a year ahead of regulations becoming mandatory in the country.
The fresh roadmap for vehicle safety from the Indian government, stipulates that the new models will have to comply with full frontal impact and offset frontal impact from October this year. Existing models will have time till October 1, 2019. For pedestrian protection, the deadline for new models would kick in from October 2018 and for existing models the deadline is October 1, 2020. Moreover, the make in India benefit will further help the brand offer modern technology at a competitive price, with which the brand has always impressed potential buyers in the country.