You may remember Hindustan Motors' senior officers confirming to IndianAutosBlog.com that prices of the Pajero Sport would come down when the car is assembled locally, at the launch of the car way back in March this year.
Today HM announced that the production of the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport at its Tiruvallur plant near Chennai has begun, with a capacity of 400 units per month.
The CBU-route Pajero Sport was priced at Rs. 24.43 lakhs (ex-showroom New Delhi) and its price following local production is 22.56 lakhs, a slash of Rs. 1.87 lakhs.
Hindustan Motors has localized components such as tyre, battery, window glass, seat belts, lamps, wiper assembly, alloy wheels and headlining. The current localization is about 14%, but HM has promised to raise it to 30% by the next fiscal year. It has not announced further price reductions upon higher localization levels.
The company hopes to win 20% share in the SUV market with the Pajero Sport but that won't be easy with the launch of the Ssangyong Rexton and the Toyota Fortuner reinforcing its presence in this territory with the launch of the facelift at the 2012 Delhi Auto Expo.
There are no engineering changes to the Pajero Sport, it continues with the same 2.5L diesel engine that produces 178 PS power and a torque of 400 Nm, with features like 4WD technology and a best-in-class turning radius of 5.6 m.
Mitsubishi's dealer network stretches across 40 locations in India and the company said it is looking to expand it to 55 outlets by the end of the year.