Tag: Mahindra

By on November 24, 2010

The drawn-out drama of who would get what was left of the busted SAIC-Ssangyong deal has come to an – at least preliminary- end.  Oneindia reports that India’s Mahindra & Mahindra bought the pieces of Korean Ssangyong. TTAC readers are not surprised. (Read More…)

By on November 5, 2010

The road to the US market has been a rough one for Mahindra, with lawsuits, delays of EPA certification and more holding up a launch that should have taken place over a year ago. And after the Indian automaker rejected an order this summer from its US distributor, Global Vehicles, we basically gave up hope on seeing the diesel-powered, 4X4 pickups and SUVs in the land of the free. Luckily, Mahindras are used to rough roads, and if an email that just landed in my inbox is anything to go on (please note the Wild Ass Rumor heading on this post), the venture may just be pulling through. Or perhaps it’s just pulling our leg. Hit the jump for a letter from Global Vehicles president John Perez…
(Read More…)

By on October 13, 2010

Mahindra may have screwed up its US distribution deal (OK, somebody screwed it up), but perhaps the problem was simply that the Indian firm hadn’t sufficiently motivated the American public. After all, we may love simple, rugged diesel-powered pickups here at TTAC, but third-world-chic isn’t exactly a mass-market trend in the US (yet…). No, what Mahindra needs to get its US-market plans back on track is this, the Mahindra Bolero Attitude, a “custom concept” that Mahindra has been teasing on Facebook. It’s got all the Eff-Off attitude of a Hummer (RIP), but Facebook users report between 30 MPG (13 km per liter in the city) and 35 MPG (15 kmpl) on diesel fuel. With numbers like that, America’s love affair with obnoxiously brash SUVs could just make a comeback…

By on August 26, 2010

Since Mahindra doesn’t seem to be giving its self-destructed US distribution channel much attention, we couldn’t help but wonder what exactly is more important to the Indian firm than a little PR the world’s second [sigh] largest car market in the world. The answer, of course, is its acquisition of Ssangyong, a South Korean automaker known only to Americans as the maker of the legendarily ugly Rodius (to be fair, regular TTAC readers may also recall Ssangyong’s bid for world’s ugliest bankruptcy declaration). But the meeting point between Ssangyong and Mahindra isn’t styling, it’s diesel and four-wheel-drive.

Despite the fact that Ssangyong is still technically in receivership, there are still 25 dealers selling its products in Australia on the strength of the motto “We Live Diesel,” while Mahindra has 40 diesel-only Australian dealers. Recently Ssangyong revived the nameplate given to its original product, Korando, for a new model that reportedly launches in Australia later this year. Looking at the evolution of the Korando, from original CJ7 clone to the forthcoming model (which reportedly boasts a 174 hp, 337 lb-ft “German-designed” diesel engine, and available FWD or AWD), one can’t help but wonder where Mahindra sees itself going.

(Read More…)

By on August 26, 2010

Just days after Mahindra’s diesel-powered compact pickups were approved by the EPA for sale in the US, the Indian automaker apparently canceled its distributor agreement with Global Vehicles according to the message above that was posted to Mahindra’s Media site. Global Vehicles has had a deal to distribute Mahindra pickup and SUV models in the US since 2006, and has signed up 350 dealers to sell the Indian imports. Recently cracks in the relationship surfaced when GV sued Mahindra alleging that the manufacturer was delaying homologation for the US market. GV claims to have spent $35m preparing for Mahindra’s US launch, and dealers were said to have paid $200k apiece to obtain franchises. Meanwhile, Automotive News [sub] notes

The statement by Mahindra hangs a question mark over the 300 to 350 U.S. retailers who have signed franchise agreements directly with Global Vehicles, if the Alpharetta, Ga., company no longer is the distributor.

Nor is it clear that Mahindra has the power to terminate the agreement without a court fight.

By on August 20, 2010

After numerous delays and a lawsuit by Mahindra’s US distributor, the Indian firm’s diesel-powered compact pickups have been approved by the EPA, reports the WSJ [sub].
(Read More…)

By on August 12, 2010

I know that stories about who will buy a down and out Korean carmaker called Ssangyong are not a major click-through magnet. Therefore, just for the record: Ssangyong selected India’s Mahindra & Mahindra as the preferred bidder to acquire a majority stake. And just in case, they named India’s Raghav Industries as the secondary preferred bidder, says The Nikkei [sub]. (Read More…)

By on August 7, 2010

India’s Mahindra & Mahindra is putting in a binding bid to buy a majority stake in troubled South Korean automaker Ssangyong Motor. Ssangyong went bankrupt in 2009 after China’s SAIC dropped the ball. They nearly went up in flames, when militant workers incited a riot and threatened to blow up the paint shop. (Read More…)

By on June 28, 2010

Since EPA certification has not been obtained, we were worried the delays would continue. We want to begin sales in December as Mahindra stated to the press on May 17th. Our sole intent was to get Mahindra focused on not missing another deadline. We simply wanted to protect you, our dealers, and your investment in the Mahindra brand.

That’s what John Perez, President of Mahindra’s US-market distributor Global Vehicles wants to know. Perez is suing the Indian manufacturer of the compact diesel pickups and SUVs to make sure his dealers dealers don’t miss a fourth blown sales deadline. Mahindra, according to Global’s suit, has not yet filed official EPA paperwork for any of its vehicles. December launch, huh?

(Read More…)

By on May 12, 2010

When something that sounded too good to be true (say a cheap, compact, diesel-powered pickup) keeps getting delayed, you eventually just make your peace with the whole “too good to be true” part. That’s the only explanation for our recent lapse in Mahindra coverage: the news is depressing enough as it is. We last updated our Mahindra tag back in December, with news that a “Middle Spring” launch would be the latest of several delays for the Indian pickup venture. A news clipping [PDF] touting a March launch is still available at the Mahindra USA website. The latest from an actual human being? Mahindra’s US distributor John Perez tells Automotive News [sub]:

I don’t want to speculate anymore

Ruh Roh!

(Read More…)

By on April 21, 2010

The emerging car market in India isn’t emerging fast enough to keep some car companies alive. Three years after Renault started to build its low-cost Logan in India, Renault is pulling out. The ho-hum sales come as no surprise to the attentive TTAC reader. As previously noted, India sells in a year what China consumes in a month in terms of cars. (Read More…)

By on December 28, 2009

Or 2010. Or, perhaps even 2011. Who knows? (courtesy:dfwmahindra.com)

Not long ago we wondered what the hell Mahindra was up to, as the Indian firm had delayed its US launch seemingly indefinitely. Thanks to Pickuptrucks.com, we’ve learned that Mahindra still has yet to file paperwork for federal standards compliance, and that the launch date for its diesel Pickup has been pushed back to the nebulous date of “middle spring 2010.” Federal testing is complete, but Mahindra won’t submit compliance paperwork to the feds until January. The company reckons this bureaucratic hurdle will be complete by February, clearing the way for a product launch sometime around April. According to pickuptrucks.com, Mahindra will be offering two-door and four-door versions of its pickup at launch, both powered by a 2.2 liter diesel engine. Mahindra intends for its trucks to achieve 30 mpgs and 1.3 ton hauling capacity.

By on December 16, 2009

Fiat's factories are currently staffed by lego figures

In Italian tradition, there’s not a lot of love lost between the Southern and Northern parts of the country. In part, because the North has always held the majority of the wealth and in part, because the two cultures are so very different. In this light, Sergio Marchionne’s plans, straight from Fiat’s Turin headquarters, to end production at their plant in Sicily, probably didn’t do much to help North-South relations. But don’t worry, the Italian government (and possibly Indian automakers) are here to help. The Times of India reports that the minister for economic development, Claudio Scajola, invited Indian firms to invest in the Italian automotive industry. More specifically, the invite was to take over Fiat’s unprofitable car unit in Sicily, which is being eyed for closure. “We are absolutely happy and open to any Indian investment in the automotive industry as well as in any other industry,” Claudio Scajola told reporters in Mumbai. “We do hope that Indian investors come to Italy.” Tata Motors declined to comment and Mahindra & Mahindra said they do not comment on speculation. Chinese firm Chery has denied being in talks to buy the plant. Looks like Claudio Scajalo needs a harder sell to bring those Asians westward.

By on November 18, 2009

Yes, but where are they actually?

Autoblog ran this picture purporting to show the locations of future dealers of Mahindra and Mahindra pickup trucks. This piqued our interest because we’ve been curious to see how the Indian firm’s plans to bring diesel-only compact pickups and SUVs to the US market would play out for some time. Over a year ago Mahindra said it would be delaying its US launch (originally planned for Spring 2009) until the fourth quarter of 2009 because, as Mr Mahindra himself put it “my family’s name is going onto this vehicle, and it’s not going to fail.” Well, here we are in the fourth quarter, and Mahindra is still calling the dots on the map “potential” outlets. They’ve also apparently pushed back the launch date again, to the first quarter of 2010. Automotive News [sub] reported way back when that Mahindra’s distributors (Global Vehicles USA) were asking for $200,000 in franchise fees. Maybe finding folks willing to pay that amount for the honor of selling diesel-only compact trucks and utes are hard to come by. Either way, it’s getting to be defecate-or-get-off-the-pot time.

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