Indian automotive manufacturer Tata Motors plans to introduce its Bolt hatchback and sedan passenger vehicles to the South African market this year.
The vehicles were launched in India in February and were also available in Nepal.
Addressing an African media delegation at the Tata Motors manufacturing facility, in Pune, India, passenger vehicle business unit programme planning and project management senior VP Girish Wagh said the Bolt hatchback was unique, as its design offered a higher seating point and enhanced interior.
Features included an advanced touchscreen with SMS readout, Bluetooth connectivity and USB connectivity for navigation, he noted.
The vehicles, which would be exported to South Africa fully assembled, sold for about $7 000 in India.
Although Tata Motors did not have immediate plans to manufacture passenger vehicles in South Africa, it would explore the possibility of establishing a passenger vehicle manufacturing plant in the country, depending on the volume uptake of its vehicles.
Tata Motors already had an established truck assembly plant in Rosslyn, near Pretoria.
Meanwhile, Wagh said only a manual transmission version of the Bolt vehicles would initially be exported to South Africa.
Tata Motors sold a manual-automatic version of the vehicle, the Tata Zest, in India, and would also consider exporting these vehicles to South Africa should there be demand.