New Maruti Suzuki for EU to be built in Hungary
Combine Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s official visit to India last week with this week’s positive news for auto manufacturers Audi and Opel. Then add to this the Hungarian vehicle manufacturing subsector buoying the nation’s overall industrial output in 2013 plus the government’s recent hardcore emphasis on its “Eastern Opening Policy,” this story seemed predestined to break.
India-based news outlet Financial Express has scooped news of Maruti Suzuki’s next major product launch, a premium hatchback code-named YRA that seeks to compete with upcoming Honda and Hyundai models. The big news locally is that India’s leading vehicle manufacturer will be producing the “YRA” exclusively in Hungary for its European market.
Financial Express quoted an anonymous industry source as stating that “Development is in the advanced stages both in Japan [at parent company Suzuki Motor] and in India,” and the model is expected to roll out in India in the fourth quarter of 2015 with European release shortly thereafter; this would seem to imply that assembly work in Hungary would begin by mid-’15.
Said assembly would presumably be contracted to the Suzuki Motor Corporation in Esztergom, which Orbán credited last month as helping “provide a livelihood for 30,000 Hungarian families.”
On a trip to Mumbai in September, Foreign Trade Secretary Péter Szijjártó announced that talks on cooperation between associations of Hungarian and Indian automotive industry suppliers had begun in anticipation of having an agreement ready for Orbán’s approval on his visit. Orbán stated to a Mumbai business forum that a pair of high-level deals had been signed with large India-based companies, but declined to name them.
At the same function, Orbán cited the vehicle industry first on a list of “the most important areas for Hungary-India economic cooperation.” The PM touted his country’s success in automotive manufacture as “result[ing] from the high standard of local engineers and low labor costs.”
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