The Great Wall Motors (GWM) announced its India debut at the Auto Expo Show 2020.
The Chinese auto giant has stepped into India at a time when the Indian automobile sector is in the midst of a crisis. Sales of cars dropped up to 42 percent in 2019 due to a slowing of consumption, according to data.
Hardeep Brar, director of marketing and sales for the GWM’s Indian branch said to Entrepreneur in India that, despite the slump in the automobile market, the sports utility vehicles (SUV) sector is expanding. “GWM is China’s number one SUV company. As the SUV segment is largely unaffected by the slowdown, the company has nothing to worry about,” Brar said.
Plans for India
GWM is bullish about the long-term future growth prospects of the Indian automobile market, Brar said. “GWM had set up its first R&D unit in India in 2016. We were conducting global as well as local project development in that centre and we plan to invest more in R&D over the next few years.”
The Chinese automobile maker has 14 manufacturing facilities across the globe. It is hoping to bring the same level of success on its Indian market, and is planning for a $1billion investment (INR 7,700) crore in the nation’s automobile industry for the similar. The funds will be focused on manufacturing plant as well as research and development for vehicles as well as the manufacturing of power batteries, electric drives, as well as production of components and vehicles.
GWM has reached an agreement with the US’s General Motors to acquire the General Motors’ Talegaon factory to manufacture their vehicles. “Under Make in India program, we also plan to manufacture in India and export globally,” Brar stated.
The company plans to launch 2 brands within India, Haval and GWM EV. While Haval will manufacture a range of vehicles for SUVs, GWM will focus on the electric vehicle (EV). GWM’s debut SUV is set to be launched on the Indian market by the beginning of 2021.
GWM in Auto Expo 2020
At the autoexpo event, GWM unveiled its Haval brand with two of its show-stopping concept cars: Vision 2025 and Concept H. While the latter is an electric vehicle, Concept H is a plug-in hybrid SUV.
In addition to the concept cars GWM’s compact electric vehicle R1 –the world’s most affordable passenger electric vehicle unveiled during the event. The R1 is available for sale only in China.