India is becoming a hot auto market; Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai, etc are looking to zoom operations

India is becoming a hot auto market; Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai, etc are looking to zoom operationsGlobal automakers are eyeing Indian auto market life never before. The country is becoming a hotspot for auto majors such as Toyota, Hyundai, Volkswagen, etc who want to increase their investments and operations in India.

The interest of these global auto companies can be assessed as they are lining up to meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Latest was when Toyota Motor president Akio Toyoda and Suzuki Motor chairman Osamu Suzuki met Modi.

Even world's largest automotive group Volkswagen is exploring a partnership with India's largest automobile company by revenue, Tata Motors.

The likes of Kia, PSA, SAIC and others are also queuing up. Maruti Suzuki accounts for half the Indian market while Toyota's Innova and Fortuner head their respective segments.

“India is critical for the Japanese parent with 50% of global sales coming from the country. So whatever technology it gets from Toyota will surely be deployed in India,” Maruti Suzuki chairman RC Bhargava told ET, adding “Nobody wants to miss the opportunity and the size. They don't see the kind of potential growth in any other market like in India. It's just not the growth rate, but the base is also very high.”


When Bernhard Maier took over as Skoda Auto's global CEO, he visited India soon after taking over. General Motors CEO Mary Barra has visited twice in less than a year. Ford Motor executive chairman Bill Ford visited India last year to inaugurate the New Product Development Centre that will create the foundation for India products.

Hyundai Motor chairman Chung Mong-Koo is also expected to visit soon to announce the launch of the Kia brand in India. Carlos Ghosn, global CEO of the Renault-Nissan Alliance and a frequent visitor, told ET he has always been bullish on the Indian market.
With the passenger vehicle market set to cross the 3 million mark by the end of 2017, India is seen as a future growth centre by all manufacturers.