Now, a ‘Made in India’ Ford car. We sure do like the sound of it!


The one year old Narendra Modi govt at the centre is doing wonder, at least on the ‘Make in India’ front. Coming to power in last May, Modi has stressed on the fact that manufacturing units in the country need to be revamped, which would escalate India’s position as investment friendly nation on the global map.

Modi’s baritone having crossed the Atlantic has reached Ford Motor Co. in the US. As per a news report in The Economic Times, Ford has decided to invest another Rs 4,000-5,000 crore in an R&D centre in Chennai, after investing a billion dollars in a second plant in Sanand, Gujarat.

In an exclusive interview with the ET recently, Fields had expressed interest in increasing the product development capability in the country.

This development comes 10 months after its Global CEO Mark Fields promised Prime Minister Narendra Modi that he will do his bit for the government's Make in India campaign.

"There's a tremendous engineering talent here, and we want to tap into that and grow our product development capability here methodically over a period of time," Fields had said.

With this fresh investment, Ford India will be increasing its investment in the country by almost 50% of its cumulative investment so far.

ET has learnt that the announcement on the Chennai R&D centre is likely to be made in the second half of this year, and the agreement with the Tamil Nadu government is expected to be signed in the next few months.

People close to the company have told the financial daily that development of new B500 project, which will spawn a new midsize segment sedan to take on the Honda City somewhere around 2018, will be the first project on which the Indian R&D base will play an important design, development and engineering role.

With a huge talent pool of skilled engineering workforce, India can become an important development hub for Ford India. Its rivals such as Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai Motor India, Renault Nissan already have sizeable development hubs, not only serving the local markets, but also contributing to the global markets as well.

However, the company is yet to officially make any statement regarding the same.

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