Manufacturers and businesses all over the world have been choosing developing countries like India and China for outsourcing their businesses. Realising the potential, even auto makers have joined the fray and have started exporting vehicles and components manufactured in the country, taking advantage of the low-cost labour and resources. Now, according to a report in Economic Times, car manufacturers Renault and Ford are contemplating making India their manufacturing hub for their global engines. The engines in question would be produced by the companies’ respective manufacturing units in Chennai.
Ford has been working on a new generation of small-capacity petrol engines. Called ‘Dragon’, the engines will be manufactured at both the Sanand plant in Gujarat and the Maraimalai Nagar plant in Chennai. The 1.2-litre and 1.5-litre engines would be ready by 2016-17, with the Detroit-based company planning to produce 1.5 million units a year globally, 4 lakh of which would be produced here.
Renault’s R&D facility in Chennai has been developing a 986cc petrol engine, codenamed B4D, in collaboration with its research units in Brazil and Europe. An enhanced version of the, 0.8-litre engine that Renault will be using in its small car, the engine would be a product for Renault’s global market. Once developed, Renault might start the production here, though the company is still looking at its other manufacturing bases for best-cost sourcing.
Ford currently exports its Figo hatchback and the EcoSport crossover from India. Ford India already exports 40 per cent of the 3.4 lakh engines produced in India each year. The Sanand facility with a capacity of up to 6.1 lakh unitswill be ready by 2015 and play a major role in Ford’s export strategy.