When i saw these pics for the first time, i thought i was looking at face-lifted Force One. This beast is looking massive, however, i am highly doubtful of the car doing even decent numbers in our market, if launched in this clothing. If Isuzu is going to launch itself as a brand in India, i feel it should have come up with something interesting. Only a good engine cannot help a company without proper equipment especially when the product is being targeted for the premium segment.
The Isuzu MU-7 SUV, known as the Alterra in the Philippines, was seen on road tests in different parts of the country. Previously, it was thought that this vehicle would be available only in 2014, but going by the testing, the SUV may just be available in 2013. When available, it is expected to compete against the Toyota Fortuner, Ssangyong Rexton and Ford Endeavour.
Japanese utility vehicle maker Isuzu Motors has reportedly firmed up its plans to have a manufacturing plant in India at Sri City, Andhra Pradesh. According to a report in The Economic Times, Isuzu will invest nearly Rs 1,000 crore in the greenfield plant that can make nearly 50,000 vehicles a year.
The company is planning to roll out MU7 Choiz SUV and V Cross, a 2.5-litre engine, mounted pick-up soon and has completed homologation of the vehicle a few weeks ago at ARAI in Pune.
Isuzu's move to set up a plant in Sri City is a big gain for Andhra Pradesh, which is struggling to get a car plant in the state for the last two decades. Isuzu is likely to make an announcement in Hyderabad on March 15.
Malaysia's Proton and Volkswagen had explored setting up units in the Southern state in the past but did not materialise. Mahindra and Mahindra, India's largest maker of sports utility vehicles is planning to set up its car plant in Andhra Pradesh. Andhra's gain is a blow for Chennai, the Detroit of India. Mahindra and Mahindra is struggling to kickstart its testing facility for cars in Cheyyar near Chennai due to bureacratic hurdles and now is looking out. It has plans to invest Rs 1800 crore in the facility.
For the record, the Isuzu plant will be ready for commercial production by 2015 and till then Isuzu will initially use Chennai as a base to produce its vehicles at Hindustan Motors' Chennai car plant at Tiruvalluvar.