Another Mahindra US-Market Effort Collapses

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer
another mahindra us market effort collapses

Back in May, when Mahindra took over the Indian EV city car firm REVA, we reckoned that the much-maligned (by Top Gear) G-Whiz would soon be sold from Mahindra’s dealer network, which was being developed by Global Motors. But with Mahindra’s deal to sell its diesel pickups through GV’s US dealer net in tatters, it seems that plans to sell REVAs in the US has hit a stumbling block. Syracuse, New York-based Bannon Automotive had made a $26.5m investment in local REVA production, an investment that was underscored by $7m in state grants and the promise of $52m in federal loans. Now Bannon is suing Mahindra, alleging that the Indian firm has broken its contract for US-based REVA production. Bannon reps tell

This material change in the representations made by Reva and Mahindra signaled the death of Bannon Automotive. Unfortunately, Mahindra/Reva did not deliver as promised. Accordingly, Bannon and its investors have been compelled to take legal action. Bannon will continue to try and follow through with the project as planned. We remain committed to bringing an affordable, U.S. manufactured electric vehicle to the American marketplace

Bannon says the Mahindra has not yet issued a license to produce REVA vehicles, although Mahindra did warn that it would delay the rollout of the REVA NXR until 2011 in order to polish that product. After all, Bannon had signed a deal with REVA last October, but delays to the NXR’s rollout date only to Mahindra’s takeover of the firm. Mahindra insists that its reason for delaying the issuance of a license to Bannon is due to the fact that the NXR is “still a work in progress,” while Bannon simply notes that its communications with REVA has been sporadic. If the facts of the matter are correctly reflected in’s write-up, it would seem that Bannon is pushing Mahindra to give it a license to produce a vehicle that is not yet ready for production… that would seem to make Mahindra the more responsible party in this dispute.

Meanwhile, as far as those government incentives are concerned,

Robert Simpson, president and CEO of Syracuse-based CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity, said none of the government benefits were paid to the project because they were contingent on Bannon obtaining a license from Reva and the investment of Bannon’s own money into the assembly plant.

Mahindra may be in the right to delay production of a vehicle developed by a company that doesn’t have the greatest reputation, but in the context of the Global Vehicles fiasco, Mahindra risks hurting its own reputation by backing out of its second US-Market partnership. Though we’re less worried about not being able to buy REVA city cars than Mahindra’s rugged diesel pickups, Mahindra is certainly not winning many friends among American automotive enthusiasts.

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  • Obbop Obbop on Dec 27, 2010

    It isn't your grandfather's Tucker Torpedo

  • Philadlj Philadlj on Dec 28, 2010

    While those aren't as horrendously awful-looking as the classic G-Wiz, they come pretty close. I'm more disappointed a diesel pickup that weighs less than seven tons can't be had in the U.S.

    • Joeaverage Joeaverage on Jan 18, 2011

      +1 on the lack of sub-freight train sized trucks with a diesel engine... I'd like to have a smallish TDI type crew cab truck.

  • Kat Laneaux Agree with Michael500, we wasted all that money just to bail out GM and they are developing these cars in China and other countries. What the heck. I understand the cheap labor but that is just another foothold the government has on their citizens and they already treat them like crap. That is pretty disgusting to go forward to put other peoples health and mental stability on a crazy crazed, control freak, leader, who is in bed with Russia. Thought about getting a buick but that just shot that one out of the park. All of this for the greed. They get what they lay in bed with. Disgusting.
  • Michael500 Good thing Obama used $50 billion of taxpayer money to bail them out and give unions a big stake. GM is headed to BK again with their Hail Mary hope of EVs. Hopefully a Republican in office will let them go BK the next time, and it's coming. The US economy is not related/dependent on GM and their Chinese made Buicks.
  • MaintenanceCosts "Rural areas hardly noticed COVID at all."I very much doubt that is true in places like the Navajo Nation or the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska, some of which lost 2% or more of their population to COVID.No city had a death rate in the same order of magnitude.Low-density living is a very modern invention. Before cars, people, even in agricultural areas, needed to live densely to survive.
  • Wjtinfwb Always liked these MN12 cars and the subsequent Lincoln variant. But Ford, apparently strapped for resources or cash, introduced these half-baked. Very sophisticated chassis and styling, let down but antiquated old pushrod engines and cheap interiors. The 4.6L Modular V8 helped a bit, no faster than the 5.0 but extremely smooth and quiet. The interior came next, nicer wrap-around dash, airbags instead of the mouse belts and refined exterior styling. The Supercharged 3.8L V6 was potent, but kind of crude and had an appetite for head gaskets early on. Most were bolted to the AOD automatic, a sturdy but slow shifting gearbox made much better with electronic controls in the later days. Nice cars that in the right color, evoked the 6 series BMW, at least the Thunderbird did. Could have been great cars and maybe should have been a swoopy CLS style sedan. Pretty hard to find a decent one these days.
  • Inside Looking Out You should care. With GM will die America. All signs are there. How about the Arsenal of Democracy? Toyota?