Johannesburg: India's auto major Tata Motors is expanding its product portfolio in South Africa to increase sales by nearly four-fold in the combined passenger and light commercial vehicle segments by 2018.
Describing South African market as its focus area, the company today unveiled the cross-over vehicle Tata Aria and two trucks from Tata Prima and Tata Ultra range at the Johannesburg International Motor Show, 2013. These new vehicles will hit the market here early next year.
It plans to have a total of six passenger vehicle models in the country in the next few months, up from two at present.
"We are aiming to sell a combined total of 30,000 units of passenger and light commercial vehicles (LCV) by 2018 in South Africa," Associated Motor Holdings CEO Manny De Canha said here.
Associated Motor Holdings has been the exclusive distributor of Tata Motors' passenger vehicles and light commercial vehicles for the last 10 years.
Tata Motors sold a total of 6,500 passenger and LCV vehicles last year and this year the plan is to sell 8,000 units.
"We are aiming to sell 12,000 units in the next year," Canha said, adding that "addition of the new models and new products will give us a push to achieve the target".
At present, the South African market for passenger and LCV combined is around six lakh units annually, out of which passenger vehicles account for about 4.8 lakh units.
Associated Motor Holdings has 48 outlets in South Africa and it would be raised to 100 by 2018, Canha said.
Highlighting the significance of the South African market, Tata Motors Managing Director Karl Slym said: "It is one of the focus markets for Tata Motors. We see tremendous potential in the market needs and are confident of designing products to cater to the consumer needs here."
The new Tata Aria, Tata Prima and Tata Ultra trucks will be launched in South African market in 2014, which will bolster "our extensive vehicle portfolio in the country", he added.
On future model launch programme, he said, "we are raising our product portfolio in passenger vehicles to four from the current two and in the next few months it will be raised to six" without sharing details.
Currently, Tata Motors sells Indica Vista and Tata Manza in the South African passenger vehicles segment.
Tata International Managing Director Noel Tata said Africa is a focus market for the Tata group.
"We see a tremendous potential in this region. We began our relationship with Africa in 1977 with the import of Tata Motors vehicles for Zambia. Today we sell our vehicles in over 11 African countries."
First Published: Thursday, October 17, 2013, 17:51