The country’s oldest car manufacturer, Hindustan Motors Ltd, hopes to sell around 12,500 Ambassador cars this fiscal.
“Last year we sold around 11,000 units. Now fitted with more fuel-efficient diesel engines that meet Bharat Stage 2 (BS2) and BS3 emission norms, we hope the taxi segment would find the Ambassador as a good value proposition,” Amar Singh Rathore, national sales manager of Hindustan Motors said.
Hindustan Motors rolls out the Ambassador fitted with petrol, diesel and compressed natural gas (CNG) engines from its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata.Within that broad category, the company offers two variants – the 1.5-litre and two-litre engines – that meet BS2 and BS3 emission norms.
According to Rathore, the new diesel engines give a mileage of 16 km a litre, as against 11 km a litre with the earlier engine. He said the company has invested around Rs.60 million to upgrade its engines to meet BS3 emission norms.
Hindustan Motors sells around 1,000 Ambassadors per month, of which 70 to 80 are fitted with CNG engines, around 250 with petrol engines, and the remaining with diesel engines. To boost its sales, the company has offered that an existing Ambassador owner can buy a new model at a discount of Rs.35,000 in return for his old car. “There are around one million Ambassadors in India. We are targeting people with very old models who still swear by the car,” Rathore said.
We wonder who will prefer to buy the Ambassador when there are much better alternatives available.