Automotive

BMW to use more local components

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Philipp von Sahr (right), President, BMW Group India, with Robert Frittrang, MD, BMW plant Chennai, at Gurgaon in Haryana. - KAMAL NARANG
Philipp von Sahr (right), President, BMW Group India, with Robert Frittrang, MD, BMW plant Chennai, at Gurgaon in Haryana. - KAMAL NARANG

Decision to help in long-term business

Soon BMW car owners would see seats, wire harnessing, door panels and air conditioning that are made in India.

The luxury carmaker on Tuesday said it will put more components to its cars made here and in order to do that, it is roping in companies specialising in certain components.

The company that used to source only few components from India (80 per cent import and 20 per cent local) would now have 50:50 in terms of local and import for components.

It has tied up with eight different component companies including Force Motors, ZF Hero Chassis, Tenneco Automotive India, Valeo India and Lear India.

"These companies specialise in each components like Force Motors for engine and gear box, ZF Hero Chassis for axles and air conditioning and cooling modules from Valeo India," Robert Frittrang, Managing Director, BMW plant Chennai, told Business Line.

He said BMW Group also wanted to make sure these suppliers are within 25 kilometres to its plant in Chennai so that components can come on real time basis as and when required.

The company said it is its long term commitment to the Indian market and increase in localisation would also help in long term business.

"With strong portfolio of locally produced cars, it is now the appropriate time for us to partner with major Indian auto component suppliers who will play a significant role in the future strategy of BMW Group in India," Philipp von Sahr, President, BMW Group India said.

He also said most of the cars that will be launched this year will have components supplied by these companies. The company plans to launch 15 models (including new and refresh versions of existing ones) this year as compared to nine models in 2014.

It will soon launch the plug-in car i8 slated to be launched on February 18.

The Chennai plant of BMW makes cars including 1, 3, 5 and 7 Series, X1, X3 and X5.

The company has 37 outlets right now, which it plans to expand to 50 outlets by end of this year, Philipp added.

(This article was published on February 3, 2015)

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