Tata, Fiat ink JV for passenger cars, engines

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New Delhi, Oct 11 (UNI) Fiat Group Automobiles and Tata Motors today said it has signed an agreement to form a Joint Venture (JV) to manufacture passenger cars, engines and transmissions for the Indian and overseas markets.

The assembly for the new JV will be from the Ranjangaon Maharashtra, Tata's existing plant and the production of the new Fiat Palio has already commenced, said a statement.

The JV will manufacture Fiat's premium cars like Grande Punto and Linea (in the B and C segments respectively), its successful 1.3 litre Multijet diesel engine, 1.2 and 1.4 litre fire gasoline engine and matching transmissions.

The JV will also manufacture one of Tata's next generation vehicles.

The Ranjangaon facilities are expected to exceed an overall output of 1,00,000 cars and 2,00,000 engines and transmissions.

The overall investment will exceed 650 million dollars with a headcount of more than 4,000 people.

The statement said the distribution and service of Fiat branded cars in India will continue to be managed by Tata Motors in line with the agreement signed in March 2006.

The Tata-Fiat dealership network, which is currently distributing and servicing the Fiat Palio, today numbers 65 dealers and is meant to expand to 100 dealers by mid-2008, when the new Fiat models are expected to be launched.

The JV will be governed by a Board with equal representation from the two partners.

The Managing Director of Tata Motors, Ravi Kant, will be the Chairman of the JV. The Vice Chairman will be Fiat Powertrain Technologies CEO and Senior Vice President Business Development of Fiat Group Automobiles Alfredo Altavilla.

Earlier Tata Motors President (Passenger Cars) Rajiv Dube said Fiat may showcase its new line of cars at the Auto Expo in January ''Fiat may also choose to display more products in the expo, where it will gauge customers reaction to its products. However, it will be a mutual call on the products to be launched,'' Mr Dube said.


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