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Rays of recovery - Ford to increase Indian output by over 30pct

American car major Ford said it will increase vehicle production in India by over 30 per cent from this month to meet increased demand in the upcoming festival season. Mr Michael Boneham president & MD of Ford India told reporters that "We have been producing about 130 vehicles a day but this will be increased to 174 vehicles a day this month.”

He said that demand has increased for its entry level sedan Ikon, which was given a facelift last November, mid-sized sedan Fiesta and also for SUV Endeavour. The company today launched an advanced version of sports utility vehicle Endeavour, priced between INR 1.599 million and 1.799 million (ex showroom, New Delhi).

Mr Boneham however said that the company expects its overall vehicles sales in 2009 to remain more or less similar that in the last year at around 31 000 units. He said that "While things are improving, we also need to be a bit cautious while the Indian government has done a good job to boost the auto sector, issue like extra INR 15,000 duty on big cars need to be addressed.”

Ford India last year announced a USD 500 million investment plan spanning over three years to expand its manufacturing facility, setting up of a new diesel engine plant and also on new product development, including a small car for the Indian car market.

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