BMW mulling to assemble the Mini range in India
Last Updated at
- 09:17 am, July 16, 2012
The entire range could be locally assembled at BMW’s Chennai plant by the middle of next year.
Ever since its first appearance at the 2012 Auto Expo, the iconic British brand, Mini has become an instant hit with the Indian enthusiasts. The whole range has amassed quite a fan following and is cherished by many. Despite all of this, you hardly ever see a Mini, which makes you think why aren’t there more of these on our roads.
Well, the reason is simple. BMW India sells the Mini Cooper range as CBUs. The cars are fully imported from England (the four-door Countryman is made in Austria) and are charged with heavy import duties. The current rate of duties on cars imported is over 100 per cent which doubles the price tag; which is why the cheapest Mini in India, the standard Cooper, costs a rather steep Rs 26.15 lakh. The high-performance Cooper S costs Rs 29.30 lakh while the convertible version coming in at Rs 31.5 lakh, is even more expensive. The four-door Countryman though, at Rs 33.6 lakh, is the flagship Mini. (All prices, Ex-showroom, Mumbai)
These high prices really won’t do much good in terms of sales. With other retro-classics and hatches like the new Volkswagen Beetle and the Mercedes Benz A-class and the Audi A3 also on the cards, the competition will get tougher in the coming months. The obvious solution then is to locally assemble the entire range in order to bring the prices down; which is what BMW India is looking to do in the coming months. The Mini range could be locally put together at BMW’s plant in Chennai where the X1, the 3-Series and the 5-Series are currently assembled.
First Published on 09:17 am, July 16, 2012
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