When Volkswagen bought a stake in Suzuki earlier this month, the German carmaker mentioned “growing emerging markets” and “innovative and environmentally friendly compact cars” and how Suzuki fit its plans. Well, it becomes clearer now as both VW and Suzuki have revealed that they will be working jointly on hybrid and electric car projects in India, accoding to a report by carazoo.com.
What can both sides bring to the table? Wolfsburg is quite advanced in its quest for a super green car – the Up! Lite Concept for instance consumes just 2.44 litres of diesel per 100km while putting out just 65 g/km of CO2. This is achieved by combining an 800cc TDI engine, electric motor, 7-speed DSG gearbox, slippery aerodynamics and a 695kg weight. Suzuki on the other hand have a range of small cars and is active in fuel-cell electric car development. It’s also the market leader in India with a wide support network and established manufacturing facilities.
The two companies are looking at establishing a development base in India and it’s rumoured that they plan to build it at Suzuki’s R&D centre.
India is fast becoming the centre of the small car universe and carmakers are falling over themselves to get a piece of the action. Honda and Toyota will each launch a compact car concept at the upcoming India Auto Expo to tap this rapidly booming market. But while the others are planning basic small cars (which Suzuki and Hyundai currently dominate) VW and Suzuki are already aiming for the next level – small green cars.