Bajaj Auto, World's largest three- wheeler manufacturer unveiled its low cost four-wheeler called RE60. The RE60 is a intra-city passenger vehicle with a seating capacity of four people. The RE60 was displayed at the Delhi Auto Expo held in 2012 January. After getting a huge success in the two wheeler and three wheeler segment, the company is trying a hand in the four wheeler segment.
“We are not trying to make a car but a four wheeler meant to ferry people in cities,” said Rajiv Bajaj, the managing director, Bajaj Auto Limited. “It is not an incremental but dramatic improvement over a three wheeler. There are over 5 million Bajaj three wheelers in the country today. That's the market we are aiming for” he added.
The RE60 is mated with a water cooled DTSi (Digital Twin Spark Ignition), 4 valve, 200 cc engine that delivers a power of around 20 Bhp. The car would have a top speed of 70 km per litre and fuel efficiency is found to be more than 35 km per litre. The RE60 weighs just 400 kgs and will be available petrol and CNG/LPG fuel variants.
“In the RE 60 we have an immediate solution to pollution that doesn’t need new infrastructure, huge subsidies or time”, Rajiv added.
The RE60 is an environment friendly four wheeler with a CO2 emission of 60 gm per km, which is the lowest for a small car anywhere in the world.
Auto rickshaws and good-carrying three wheelers are facing the problems like lack of roofs and side doors as well as lack of safety features.
France's Renault SA and Japan's Nissan Motor Co, who worked with Bajaj on developing a ultra low cost(ULC) car will decide on cooperation on RE60 in the next few months, Rajiv told. The company could sell the car to Renault or Nissan Motors with minor modifications if they wish.“We are free to brand our own four wheeler and sell it anywhere in the world,” Rajiv Bajaj added.
As per an agreement with the Renault-Nissan alliance, BAL was supposed to develop and manufacture the vehicle and sold under the badge of the alliance.
"We make about 5,20,000 three-wheelers a year of which only 2,00,000 are sold in India and rest exported. So we see markets like Sri Lanka, which could be the first export market has huge potential for RE60," he said. RE60 will be produced at three-wheeler plant in Aurangabad. The initial plan is to produce 200 RE60s daily.
Bajaj auto plans to market RE60 in global markets. In Sri Lanka, the target customers could be the ordinary individuals who are looking for a cheap self owned vehicle. According to the company, Bajaj Auto already exports 10,000 three-wheelers every month to Sri Lanka and 90 percent of them are used for personal travel.
Bajaj has a good potential on African market where the public transport is extremely poor. Bangladesh and Latin America were the other major markets of Bajaj.
Bajaj RE60 would be a good competitor for Tata Nano, which is the cheapest car in the world currently. The RE60 will cost around Rs. 2.5 lakh to 2.75 lakh.
An environment friendly four wheeler at low cost
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