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Old 9th March 2004, 23:45   #1
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The ubiquitous Morris Oxford-based Hindustan Ambassador is still in widespread service as a taxi in India - a living symbol of a bygone age. However, the venerable 'Amby' is experiencing declining sales in the face of more modern competition. But what about the future for the Amby's maker, Hindustan Motors? Well, the company is now offering spare plant capacity to other makers and an opportunity has been identified at HM's relatively modern Thiruvellore plant. Deepesh Rathore and Tilak Swarup report.

I feel Mitsubishi shud use the plany to manufacture EVO. What say guys??? Or at least get in the new Lancer and the Cedia.

Source : http://www.just-auto.com/features_detail.asp?art=936
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Old 10th March 2004, 01:35   #2
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JUST SHOOT 'EM! When will those Hindustan Motors babus ever learn?

First they sell a world war II contraption for 60 years, then upgrade it with an Isuzu engine while retaining the same lego build quality (Ambassador)...wake up, no one but the guys with red lights on their cars is going to pay fiat palio money for your antique! Next they design "inhouse" a utility vehicle that is so pathetic that even villagers from villages without electricity and water find it to be outdated! Finally Mitsubishi hands them the Lancer...they screw the build quality, de-tune the engine (1.5) and offer a slush box in the more powerful variant (1.8). Worse still, the pricing doesnt change over 6 years and they expect the Lancer to occupy a "dominating" position in the market. As if to cut the branch that they find themselves sitting on, HM goes ahead and prices the new 1.8 straight in Octavia and Optra territory.

HM has excess capacity at their plants, and deservedly so. Instead of asking Mitsubishi for better cars or thinking up modern products (beyond their scope), they offer that capacity to others

Havent they also been manufacturing the Ikon engine since long?

HM deserves to die...just like a certain Premier Automobiles Ltd. did

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Old 10th March 2004, 15:24   #3
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Long ago I had read somewhere that growing paddy at their Uttarpara factory, West Bengal would benefit HM more than producing the Ambassador. A sensible management would have seen the Ambassador become a cult car, like the Mini / Beetle..... I mean incorporating a powerful engine and the latest technology in a retro styled yet new body shell. It would have also seen small and more socially acceptable cars from Mitsubishi being introduced in our market. That's just not happened and HM will suffer for it.
If you think of it, they've been really stupid. The Amby, which was a Morris was sourced from BMC. The Mini was also called manufactured by the BMC. If HM had any planning or foresight, they should have obtained a licence to manufacture the old Mini alongside the Amby. This would have worked even as late as 1979 - 80. The Mini would have been small and cheap and would find many buyers. HM's profits would have soared and they would have money for development and ungradation.
I am convinced, India's first car manufacturer is on its last legs. Sad but true.
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