New Small Car from Ford coming to India in early 2010

Ford India will be launching a small car sometime in early 2010, in a bid to step up its presence in the country.

The company showcased the prototype, codenamed B517, recently at a dealers meet in Chennai.

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The small car is expected to compete with the Hyundai I20 and the Suzuki Swift, two people close to the development said.

Ford India is currently present only in mid-sized cars and SUV segments, not seen as volume-pushers in the automobile industry.

At the recent dealers meet, Ford gave a pep talk to dealers whose sales have been under pressure due to competition in the recent past. The company is also planning to launch the new Endeavour to taken on Toyota's Fortuner which is expected to be launched this month.

The small car will be a 4-door hatchback, powered by an indigenous diesel engine manufactured at its Chennai plant.

A company spokesperson said.

"We regularly meet with our dealers, as we grow our dealership base and are seeing even greater support and enthusiasm from our dealer body supportive of our future plans. As announced previously, we are on track to bring the new small car to India in early 2010. Unfortunately, we are not able to reveal the timing of our future product introductions."

The US auto major also plans to make India an export hub for its small car. Global markets, other than the US, will be a focus area for the company.

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