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Old 7th April 2012, 13:29   #46
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Nice thread, brought back memories from the mid 90's when I visited the Surajpur Daewoo plant along with an older cousin who worked there at the time. He brought me along one day when we were visiting them in Delhi and I got to see this plant as a young boy. There is something about these pictures, they make you stop and take notice. Strange feeling, looking at them now, after all these years.
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Old 7th April 2012, 14:19   #47
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Still remember the 's.p.i.c.e' ad from daewoo for Matiz. Its still a good looking car - and looks better than the current avatar chevy spark..
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Old 7th April 2012, 14:41   #48
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Thanks for sharing SID, I still remember somewhere in 2000 I used to go to LG Factory passing this one, I guess that was the time they were closing the shop. Its a huge factory I would say. I felt bad for workers at that time, heard they used to run some buses to pick them, but one fine day they stop all. Really Sad.
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Old 7th April 2012, 15:54   #49
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

I bought my Red Matiz SD in 1999. It gave me sterling service till 2008 when it developed it's first problem of AC loosing cooling when engine heated up. Apart from non availability of spares, main problem was lack of trained technicians so the root cause of the problem could not be traced. Any how I kept Matiz for 3 months even after buying Altis in 2009. I finally sold it fearing that it would get rusted due to very less use. Matiz had become a part of our family for 10 years and brought tears to our eyes, when she departed with the new owner.

It was a very spacious (for it's size), comfortable and maintenance free Car. AC was a real chiller and car had a very tough safety cage. Only problem was small engine Had Daewoo continued it's operations in Indian, Matiz would surely have become one of the top selling small cars.

It is sad to see the current pictures of the factory. If I remember correctly, after the factory closed down, multiple government department like Banks, Customs, Excise etc., got into picture of selling the plant demanding their unpaid dues. They fixed the price very high to cover their dues, ignoring the market value. Also the intending buyers were not willing to grease the right palms so the plant could not be sold and was allowed to rust. I don't know what price the current owner has paid for this but I am sure it must have been a fraction of the price originally demanded after closure.

Few years ago One Noida dealer had bought about some finished cars and lots of spares from the closed factory, which were quickly sold off. It will still be a good idea if some body buys the balance inventory of parts and cars which I am sure will find ready buyers.

Last edited by akj53 : 7th April 2012 at 15:57.
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Old 7th April 2012, 16:27   #50
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Daewoo and B V R Subbu bring back a flood of memories of the days when Hyundai and Daewoo entered India. Sad to see a 'ghost' of a factory gathering dust. It would be a real nightmare securing this plant from pilferage, with so much of equipment lying around. B V R Subbu was to Hyundai what Jagdish Khattar was to Maruti, both were 'high' profile bosses who became synonymous with their respective companies and didn't find too much success after they left them (or were eased out of them: I think that was the case with BVRS after Hyundai eased him out after he had toiled so hard and made Hyundai India a force to reckon with). I think Koreans took over the reins from BVRS. Argentum must have bought out this facility for a 'pittance', if they are able to put it to good use it would be nice. Argentum and Carnation are a far cry from Hyundai and Maruti, respectively.

Last edited by Durango Dude : 7th April 2012 at 16:33.
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Old 7th April 2012, 18:32   #51
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Thank you Sidindica for this requiem.

The pictures brought a lump in my throat. I owned a Cielo, my first big car. What a pleasure it was to drive.

Finally sold off for a mere Rs. 60000.

Generally companies do not attempt to revive a closed shop. May be it is the fear of unknown labour issues or merely the cost involved to resurrect it that holds them back.
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Old 7th April 2012, 19:15   #52
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

@Sid: I have known the state of the facility and the current management as my BIL (A Marine Engineer) joined Argentum for 7-8 months in late 2009 as Maintenance Chief. He was deployed to head the team who was responsible to start the huge generators powered by Ship Engine. They had the plan to generate electricity and sell it to UP govt. There was a cat fight in the management related to operations and business motives. As explained, it was a state of a head-less chicken. Salaries of Important personnel were intermittent and my BIL had tough time to recover his salary. At that time few SUV CBU's from UK were also being tested but god knows how they decided to manufacture electric scooters. I don't see a good market demand for those scooters at present.

I hope the space and facilities are utilized well and generate good amount of employment.
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Old 7th April 2012, 20:49   #53
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

It really feels bad and one thing I must say. What a waste of natural resources and so much of thinking and effort going drain vain..
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Old 8th April 2012, 10:44   #54
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

A very nice photo story. Very similar to the Yezdi-Jawa story in Mysore.
I remember seeing few Cielo's with the DCM-Daweoo badge as well. Guess. it was. on the
first few batches.
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Old 8th April 2012, 10:58   #55
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

This is one of the best threads on the forum. Although sad, but what a sight!. Ready engines waiting to be put into a car, wow!. Thank you sidIndica for the pictures and great narration.

I always pass by the premier plant located on the kalyan road which is similarly deserted. I don't think they would have maintained it as this daewoo plant. It would be great if anybody went inside that plant.
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Old 8th April 2012, 14:59   #56
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Sad to see a behemoth of a manufacturing facilty gathering dust. Any reasons why Daewoo went bust? A company does not invest crores without doing some future planning.
When GM took over Daewoo then how come the factory was left out?
It seems work was in full swing yesterday and then poof! everyone disappeared just like that.
Thank you thread Sid & the wonderful pictures
This reminds me of reading Behram's thread on Fiat's plant at kurla.
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...es-thread.html (The Premier Automobiles Ltd - The Remembrances Thread)
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Old 8th April 2012, 23:00   #57
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Some sets of miscellenous pics clicked by my friend.

Its not just another sunday...
Today is the day of joy and goodwill, the joy of celebrating the easter.
Maybe somewhere, somehow, sometime the dear lord will wake up someday and make it alive...yet....again?

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Old 8th April 2012, 23:05   #58
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Final set of pics....a chapter, 10 years old, lost in the pages of history books...

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Old 8th April 2012, 23:47   #59
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

1. Firstly, credit where due. EXCELLENT thread! This captures the Indian automotive history at a crucial turning point. Thank you for the efforts, time and commitment in capturing this.

2. Secondly, it a very sad read. In human terms, it is like reading about a fond person who has passed on and there are only memories to connect to.

The Matiz was one of the best cars in India comparitively at the time, considering the arrogant take-it-or-leave it Maruti 800, the obsolete Padminis/Ambassadors or the very hideous 1st-gen Santro.

The Cielo/Nexia also represented a glimpse into the developed automotive world at the time of the "luxury" segment of the Maruti Esteem.

Being an automotive aficionado, I truly hope this entire Daewoo facility is treated well with by any new owner.
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Old 8th April 2012, 23:57   #60
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Default Re: Visit to Daewoo Motors (Argentum) plant, Surajpur, UP: a Chronicle in Pictures

Fantastic Thread Sid, This coming from a True Matiz Fan

One for this thread, Presenting our Factory Fresh 2001 Matiz SD.
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