India’s largest automobile company Maruti Suzuki will supply its latest compact car A-Star to Volkswagen AG . The car, which will undergo some modifications and design changes, will be sold in India and Asian markets under a new brand, according to senior officials in the automobile industry.
The agreement to supply A-Star, Suzuki’s fifth global model after Swift, Ritz, SX4 and Grand Vitara will be inked soon. Volkswagen holds 20% stake in Maruti’s parent company Suzuki.
Volkswagen’s decision to choose A-Star comes after two years of Maruti’s success of supplying A-Star to another Japanese carmaker Nissan Motors, which re-badges the same car as Pixo for sales through its own network in Europe. A-Star sold as Alto in overseas markets is exclusively made by Maruti Suzuki at its Manesar plant in Haryana. It’s a futuristic product specifically developed by parent Suzuki Motor Corp (SMC) for developed markets meeting all its stringent crash safety tests, emission norms and environment regulations.
Maruti’s engineering team would work closely with VW to tweak the car as per its global market needs, said a senior official from the automobile industry. “There could be some changes in the basic design though the overall technical specs won’t be altered,” the official added.