More bad news for Detroit: Pickup trucks from India will arrive in 2010

ScorpioThe last thing Detroit needs is more competition, but car makers around the world are still looking to follow the Japanese and South Koreans into this market. The Mahindra TR20 and TR40 pickups, built in Nashrik, India, will begin showing up in domestic showrooms as soon as early 2010, according to R.L. Polk & Co. An SUV also from Mahindra & Mahindra, Ltd, the Scorpio, is expected to follow late in the year or early in 2011.

The trucks will not be inexpensive, however, with prices starting around $20,000. They will feature turbo diesel engines (the only diesel in this class) that get up to 30 mpg. The two- and four-door models will compete in the compact class with pickups including the Chevy Colorado, Ford Ranger, the Ridgeline, Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier. While the Ridgeline retails for $30,000 or more, the other brands are in the same price range as the Mahrinda. However, demand in this market segment has been dropping steadily over the past five years.The company reportedly hopes to sell 50,000 in its first 12 months. Last year, however, only around 375,000 compact trucks were sold in the U.S., and the notion that the company will grab a 13% market share overnight is ludicrous.

Mahindra first made its way into vehicle manufacturing by assembling Willys jeeps after WWII, and now makes a variety of work and farm vehicles as well as trucks and SUVs. The company is a huge player in the Asian market, with strong international aspirations. Don't be surprised to see a Mahindra drive down your street in the next couple of years.
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